• Home
  • Half-Day Conference - Siding with the Resistance: Psychoanalysis and Political Action Featuring Steven Reisner, PhD

Half-Day Conference - Siding with the Resistance: Psychoanalysis and Political Action Featuring Steven Reisner, PhD

  • April 24, 2021
  • 9:50 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Virtual using Zoom
  • 97



"There is no love of truth without an unconditional acceptance of death" –Simone Weil

The promise of psychoanalysis is simple: understanding leads to change. If there is no change, there has not been understanding. The analyst’s tool is the ability to smell denial, repression and dissociation, the particularly where these inhibit Eros: the capacity to love and to act on that love.

Freud provided us with this tool and with a value system to guide us both in understanding the sources of our fears and the mechanisms of our liberation. Over the decades, Freud increasingly expanded the reach of psychoanalysis to include political analysis and change. Starting in 1915, he applied the theory of narcissism, and the life and death drives, as a response to the greatest threat of the 20th century: war.

Today, we must use Freud’s tools and values to combat the threats of the 21st century: mass fear and denial in the face of the devastating effects of neoliberal capitalism. Because what neoliberal capitalism (the economic philosophy associated with free market capitalism) has unleashed - the climate emergency, the pandemic, racism, economic disparity, and the increasingly widespread desire for authoritarian government - are today’s equivalent of the world wars of the 20th century. Now, like then, civilization is facing a mortal threat; and if we are to avert it, our society desperately needs psychoanalysis.


  1. Explain the origins of the development of psychoanalytic theory as it applies to social and political issues.
  2. Explain the development of Freud’s theories of narcissism, Eros and death to provide a context of activism and hope for our patients and colleagues.
  3. Utilize psychoanalytic theory to facilitate the pursuit of social justice.

Presenter Biography: Steven Reisner, Ph.D. is a psychoanalyst and political activist. He is a founding member of the Coalition for an Ethical Psychology, Advisor on Psychology and Ethics for Physicians for Human Rights and past-President of Psychologists for Social Responsibility. He was a leader in the successful movement to prohibit psychologists from their central role in abusive CIA and military interrogation and detention processes. As a result of these efforts, psychologists were removed from detention operations at Guantanamo Bay in January 2016.

Dr. Reisner has been a consultant on issues of trauma, torture, political violence, disaster and resilience in the face of catastrophic events for the United Nations, the International Criminal Court, the International Organization for Migrations and other international humanitarian and mental health organizations.

He has published in the New York Times, Slate, Huffington Post and in various academic journals. He has been interviewed on NPR, Al Jazeera, CBC, and the BBC, and has been on the teaching faculty of the Clinical Psychology Program at Columbia University, the International Trauma Studies Program at New York University, the NYU Medical School, the Psychoanalytic Association of New York, and the Women’s Therapy Center Institute.

In an earlier career, Dr. Reisner was an Obie-award winning director and actor. More recently he was a co-producer of Michael Moore’s documentary, Fahrenheit 11/9.


Registration is required. The Zoom link will be emailed to registrants 24 hours before the event. Registration closes at 10:00 AM MT on April 23rd.


  • DPS Members: $45
  • Non DPS Members: $55

Cancellation and Certificate Replacement: There will be NO refunds after April 20, 2021. If awarded a CME certificate, please retain for your records.  There will be a $3 charge if the Society office has to resend a certificate.

Confidentiality: During conferences, we will follow rules of confidentiality for clinical case material including disguising identifying information. No recording of case material is allowed. Please do not discuss any case material outside of this conference. 

CME Certificates:  In order to receive a CME certificate, the attendee must: pre-register, pay in full, attend the entire session, and complete an online evaluation within 14 days after the program.  CME certificates will be sent by email within a month following the event after attendees are cross referenced by registration, payment, attendance, and completion of the evaluation.  

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation require-ments and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of American Psychoanalytic Association and The Denver Psychoanalytic Society. The American Psychoanalytic Association is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The American Psychoanalytic Association designates this Live Activity for a maximum of 2.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION FOR ALL LEARNERS: None of the planners and presenters of this CME program have any relevant financial relationships to disclose.

 About Us  Quick Links Join & Connect 

We are a psychoanalytic institute and society dedicated to educating mental health professionals and the public

Affiliations include:   University of Colorado Psychiatry DepartmentAPsaAAAPE

About - Institute
About - Society
Legal Disclaimers

Sign up here for the newsletter and stay up to date on event

Become a Society Member here

1890 N. Revere Court, Mail Stop F546, Aurora CO 80045    (303) 724-2666 | (303) 845-8657 fax   | office@denverpsychoanalytic.org

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software