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Trauma, Shame, and Mourning (Peter Shabad, PhD)

  • 20 Mar 2021
  • (CDT)
  • 21 Mar 2021
  • (CDT)
  • 2 sessions
  • 20 Mar 2021, 9:00 AM 4:00 PM (CDT)
  • 21 Mar 2021, 9:00 AM 4:00 PM (CDT)
  • via Zoom


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  • Once you submit the registration form, you will be considered committed to the seminars for which you register for full credit and at full fee. With good reason, you may later substitute another seminar for one you are unable to take, but this must take place within the current academic year. Any changes must be discussed with and approved by Toula Kourliouros-Kalven (tkalven@ccpsa.org).
  • Registration for half-fee:
    If you have already completed the required 30 elective seminars and the clinical case conference requirement, and wish to take additional elective seminars and/or case conferences, you may do so at a reduced fee: one-half the tuition of a full credit seminar. You do not need to register in advance, but if you can, please do so. To register during the academic year, please contact Toula Kourliouros Kalven (tkalven@ccpsa.org).

    CCP Graduates and board members may also take elective seminars for 1/2 the full fee.

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Peter Shabad, PhD

March 20-21, 2021

Peter Shabad, PhD is Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Northwestern University Medical School. He is also on the Core Teaching and Supervising Faculty of the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis (CCP) and Faculty of the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis. Dr. Shabad is co-editor of The Problem of Loss and Mourning: Psychoanalytic Perspectives (IUP, 1989) and is the author of Despair and the Return of Hope: Echoes of Mourning in Psychotherapy (Aronson, 2001). Dr. Shabad is currently working on a new book entitled Seizing The Vital Moment: Trauma, Shame, and Mourning to be published by Routledge. He is the author of numerous papers and book chapters on diverse topics such as the psychological implications of death, loss and mourning, giving and receiving, shame, parental envy, resentment, spite, and regret. Dr. Shabad has a private practice in Chicago in psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic therapy.

Seminar Title: Trauma, Shame, and Mourning

Seminar Description

In this course we will explore how traumatic and chronically disillusioning experiences have profoundly inhibiting effects on the passion necessary to grow and change throughout life.  We will devote special attention to how human beings transform their traumatic experiences outside of their control into shameful failures, in which they “blame the victim” in themselves for being a victim.  After describing how the “intimate creation” of one’s unique constellation of symptoms is a means of both communicating and memorializing such traumatic experiences, we will examine how shame leads to character passivity and interrelated dynamics such as self-pity, resentment, entitlement, envy, perverse spite, and regret.  In the clinical section of the course, we will explore how the patient’s passivity and ambivalence towards therapeutic change is closely intertwined with his/her chronic struggle between the freedom to desire and obeying a tyranny of shoulds. In this regard, we will also highlight important clinical tensions between developmental determinism and freedom of will, and corresponding countertransference tensions of love versus respect in the analyst’s attitude toward the patient.  Finally, we will discuss how the mourning process of accepting and reintegrating one’s shamed desires paradoxically facilitates the generosity of relinquishing the necessity that those desires be fulfilled. In addition to analytic readings, we will also read Dostoevsky’s Notes from the Underground and Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilych. 

Selected Readings

Dostoevsky, F. (1864).  Notes from the underground.  In The Best Short Stories of Dostoevsky,  (D. Magarshack, Trans).  New York: Modern Library.

Freud, S. (1917).  Mourning and melancholia.  Standard Edition: 243-258.

Rank, O. (1936).   Illness and healing chapter, in Will Therapy. New York: Knopf. 

Shabad, P. (2001).  Despair and the Return of Hope: Echoes of Mourning in

Psychotherapy.  Northvale, N.J: Jason Aronson. 

Shabad, P. (2007).  Between determinism and self-blame:  The freedom to choose

oneself.  Contemporary Psychoanalysis, 43(4), pp. 587-604.

Shabad, P. (2010).  The suffering of passion.  Metamorphoses and the embrace of the

stranger.  Psychoanalytic Dialogues 20: 710-729. 

Tolstoy, L.  (1886). The death of Ivan Ilych.  New York: Signet.  1960.

Winnicott, D.W. (1949).  Mind and its relation to the psyche-soma.  In Through

Paediatrics to Psychoanalysis.  New York:  Basic Books. 1975.

"Nothing human is alien to me"  --Terrence

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