The theme of this Congress will address a topic that is both wide ranging and foundational, particularly apt to discuss many of the critical core issues of today’s psychoanalysis.
As a matter of fact, to address the theme of the unconscious implies not only working through the development of its conceptualization from the birth of psychoanalysis until today - according to the more or less recent and controversial models – but it means also to investigate, with renewed spirit of inquiry, on the plural locations and multiples scenarios of psychic reality where the unconscious reveals itself and inhabits, even outside the subject. This will inevitably lead to reflect on the interpretive tools we need today for giving authentic meaning to the manifestations of that unconscious located outside the intrapsychic, in order to make them not only conscious but truly integrated into the psychic experience both of the patient and the analytical couple.
The title of the Congress, Unconscious/Unconsciouses, deliberately stresses a multiplicity and heterogeneity of positions related not only to the ever more sophisticated theoretical models - built in the course of the development of psychoanalytical theories - but mirroring as well the psychoanalytical aspiration to always new elaborations regarding forms and times of an unconscious even more frequently seen as the outcome of an interaction between individual and group dimension. That is, an unconscious seen as a mind agency that is singular in itself, but that at the same time has inevitably been plural from the beginning of its existence and development within the interpersonal links.
Therefore, this Congress aims to highlight the complex path of psychoanalysis from Freud and his original topographic formulation of the unconscious – that he transformed and developed through the elaboration of the tripartite structural model and complemented with the insight of the existence of a group psyche – until the further developments by his followers. With regard to the birth of the mind these developments stress its bipersonal and group dimension, and have further elaborated the Unconscious System assigning it increasingly complex transformational roles and functions.
Following the scientific guideline of our Executive Board and Scientific Committee – the idea that research is ingrained in the analytic situation – we will discuss contemporary psychoanalytical practice focusing on the main manifestations of the unconscious in the session (repetition, acting and representation). We will examine the issue of the unconscious paying great attention to its potential interdisciplinary facets as well.
In order to investigate, confront and discuss on such a wide ranging topic, we invited international guests and introduced new formats in the structure of our Congress, whose preliminary program is under completion.
On Friday and Saturday mornings we will have firstly plenary sessions on the main issues of the topic, and later on in the morning the same issues will be discussed in a few main panels – this format is quite new for our Congresses. In the afternoons , as usual, we will have our traditional panels where new papers will be presented, and other sessions are planned in order to provide further opportunities for meetings and exchanges between members and candidates. Another plenary session and a final round table will close officially the Congress on Sunday morning, the former focusing on the relation between Consciousness and the Unconscious according to the most recent neuroscientific researches too, and the latter will host a discussion on how different theoretical models try to define the status of the Unconscious today.
Chair of SPI Scientific Committee