public event

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10:30 - 13:00


Standard ticket £ 20.00


Investcorp Auditorium
St. Anthony's College
62 Woodstock Rd
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX2 6JF
United Kingdom

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trans-itory identities: some psychoanalytic reflections on transgender identities

bpf Wessex Event - Presented by Alessandra Lemma

The capacity of transgender as a term incorporating all gender variance and sexual preferences has become a powerful tool of activism and personal identification. Rather than being an index of marginality, ‘trans’ has become a central cultural site. Lemma will discuss how this identity label encompasses a complex range of internal psychic positions in relation to consciously stated sexual preferences and gender identifications. The aim of this event is to draw upon Lemma's work with under-18-year-olds who are seeking medical intervention for gender dysphoria in order to explore what can appear to be, in some cases, a premature embracement of the empowering potential of the transgender identification. In an external culture where to ask ‘why transgender’ (as opposed to ‘how transgender’) is felt to be pathologising, the challenge is to tread the fine line between a dialogue based on an equidistant curiosity about meaning and function that is core to an analytic approach, in order to foster a dialogue that is productive, rather than one that can be experienced as 'informed suspicion'.

21 November 2020 11am - 1 pm

Coffee/Registration from 10.30am

Investcorp Building, St Antony's College, Oxford OX2 6JF

£20 or £22 on the day

Professor Alessandra Lemma is a Fellow of the British Psychoanalytical Society and Consultant Clinical Psychologist at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families. She is Visiting Professor at the Psychoanalysis Unit, University College, London, and at the Istituto Winnicott and Centro Winnicott, Rome.  For many years she worked at the Tavistock Clinic as Head of Psychology and Professor of Psychological Therapies. She is Editor of the Routledge New Library of Psychoanalysis series and was one of the regional Editors for the International Journal of Psychoanalysis until 2018. She has published extensively on psychoanalysis, the body and trauma.


Photo credit: Bob Leatherbarrow

Artist: Bob Leatherbarrow


Standard ticket £ 20.00