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  • Receptive Listening to the Foreign Things We Hear About Ourselves from Our Patients: Radical Openness to Otherness with Anton Hart, Ph.D. (Lecture)

Receptive Listening to the Foreign Things We Hear About Ourselves from Our Patients: Radical Openness to Otherness with Anton Hart, Ph.D. (Lecture)

  • May 07, 2021
  • 6:45 PM - 8:30 PM
  • Virtual using Zoom.
  • 29



Description: Every psychoanalyst or psychoanalytic psychotherapist has had the experience of being seen by the patient in ways that are different from how the therapist sees themself. Therapeutic dialogues across the borders of racial, ethnic, or other diversities can intensify this disparity between self-perception and the perceptions of the other. It can be extremely difficult, for example, to have the subjective experience of feeling dedicated to and engaged with the patient but, in contrast, be experienced by the patient as detached or insufficiently caring. Or, similarly, we may have the challenging experience of having predominantly benevolent feelings as we strive to be of help, but being experienced, nevertheless as traumatic or malevolent. Accordingly, we often attempt to prepare ourselves for our patients' foreign or discordant experience of us in the course of the therapeutic process through bolstering our preparation for their foreignness. We do this through deliberate acquisition of knowledge about their racial, cultural or other contextual feature, or we rely on the concepts of projection and transference to emotionally protect and sustain ourselves as we attempt to manage the task of surviving the personal associated with being seen in ways that are different from the ways that we see ourselves.

This presentation offers an account of the presenter’s concept of “radical openness” as an alternative to a stance of emphasizing an orientation multicultural competence and as an alternative to interpreting the patient's apparent misrecognitions of us as transference. Radical openness will be described as a stance which seeks to receive our patients’ strange experiences, across the borders of racial, ethnic or other differences, as if they are bound to contain personal truths and insights, for both our patients and us alike, even if we at first believe that we are not implicated.


  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the anxieties associated with engaging issues of diversity, difference and otherness.
  2. Discuss the central roles of curiosity and radical openness as antidotes to cultural ignorance and insensitivity and be able to cultivate such qualities in themselves and in their patients.
  3. Discuss pitfalls and breakdowns that can occur in diversity-related explorations and find ways to use these in the service of the restoration of open dialogue.
  4. Use their capacity for receptive engagement in the psychotherapeutic process by implementing a stance of radical openness.

Biography: Dr. Hart is Training and Supervising Analyst and Faculty of the William Alanson White Institute. He has presented and consulted nationally and internationally. He supervises at several psychoanalytic institutes and at Adelphi University. He is a member of the Editorial Boards of Psychoanalytic Psychology and Contemporary Psychoanalysis. He has published papers and book chapters on a variety of subjects including psychoanalytic safety and mutuality, issues of racial, sexual and other diversities, and psychoanalytic pedagogy. He is a Member of Black Psychoanalysts Speak. He teaches at The Manhattan Institute, Mt. Sinai Hospital, the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy, the Cleveland Psychoanalytic Center, the National Institute for the Psychotherapies, the New York Psychoanalytic Institute, and the Institute for Relational Psychoanalysis of Philadelphia. Recently Chair of the Diversities Section in the Department of Psychoanalytic Education, he now serves as Co-Chair of the Holmes Commission on Racial Equality in the American Psychoanalytic Association. He is in full-time private practice of psychoanalysis, individual and couple therapy, psychotherapy supervision and consultation, and organizational consultation, in New York.


Cost: While this event is free and open to the public, there is a fee for those who would like to receive CME credit. Please choose the appropriate level when registering.

  • CME credit for DPS Members: $20
  • CME credit for non DPS Members: $30
  • No CME credit: Free - $0

Registration: This lecture will take place virtually using Zoom. Registration is required. Registration will close on May 6, 2021. The Zoom link will be emailed to registrants 24 hours before the start of the event.

Recording: Don't miss the opportunity to hear Dr. Hart speak in May as this event will NOT be recorded.

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

CME Certificates:  In order to receive a CME certificate, the attendee must: pre-register, pay in full, attend the entire session and complete an 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. 

Cancellation & Certificate Replacement Policy:  There will be no refunds of fees for cancellations within 7 days of the event.  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.

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements 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 1.5 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.

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