The Institute for Clinical Social Work

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2017 Alumni Relations Workshop

Great Conversations in Psychoanalysis: Deconstructing Confusion in Clinical Practice

Psychoanalysis can be thought of as a long conversation.  Since its beginnings, practitioners and theoreticians have responded to each other based on clinical practice, new findings, expansions of theory, and even external events.  We continue this tradition today. 

One of the great conversations in psychoanalysis was between Freud and his protégé Sandor Ferenczi.  A complex relationship, as Ferenczi was Freud’s patient, friend and colleague, Ferenczi’s ideas were controversial even as many considered him one of the most gifted of pioneering analysts.  Yet, for a long time, Ferenczi was written out of the history of psychoanalysis.  Now his work is being rediscovered as foundational for theory and clinical practice.

Ferenczi’s paper “Confusion of the Tongues Between the Adults and the Child,” written for the 1932 Wiesbaden Congress but not published until 1949, presents seminal ideas relevant for contemporary clinical practice.  Ferenczi asks in this paper, how can anyone recognize truth, sincerity and authenticity when this is so often covered over with words, language or presentation that masks what is real and true.

We will trace the conversation between Freud and Ferenczi and do a close reading of “Confusion of Tongues” (International Journal of Psychoanalysis 1949 30:225-230).  We will look at how this illuminates our understanding of the therapeutic relationship, transference, and the unfolding of clinical process.  Thus, we will join the conversation.

ICSW Alumni and Advanced Standing students welcome!



Erika Schmidt, MSW, is President of the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis, a Training and Supervising Analyst, an Associate Supervising Child Analyst, a faculty member at the Chicago Institute and ICSW, and in the private practice of child and adult psychoanalysis and psychotherapy.  When elected to lead the Chicago Institute in 2013, she was the first woman and first social worker in this position.

When & Where

Saturday, February 4, 2017
11:00 – 3:00pm

411 10th St.
Wilmette, IL 60091

Registration & CEUs

Registration: $50.00

Three Continuing Education Credits Available for LSW/LCSWs, LPC/LCPCs, et al.


For questions or more information contact LaTrina Gamer or (312) 935-4245.

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