The Guntrip Trust Lecture 2017: Alistair Ross, ‘Psychoanalysis and religion: auld enmity or new alliance?’ (Edinburgh)

Revd Dr Alistair Ross, ‘Psychoanalysis and religion: auld enmity or new alliance?’ 

Date: Wednesday 26th April 2017, at 6.30pm

Location: Lauriston Hall, 28 Lauriston Street, Edinburgh

Charge: £12 including refreshments

Increasingly, we live in a world of binary distinctions, with little place for nuance or inhabiting the ‘space between’. Yet inhabiting the ‘space between’ is central to the psychoanalytic quest and to the practice of religion. Alistair’s lecture will draw on his doctoral research on the emergence of spirituality in contemporary psychoanalysis. This involved interviewing psychoanalysts in the UK, Dublin, New York, Boston, Los Angeles and San Francisco. He will highlight what we can learn from both traditions that engage with what it is to be fully human.”

Alistair Ross is Director of Psychodynamic Studies, and Associate Professor in Psychotherapy at the Department for Continuing Education at Oxford University.

Alistair trained as a psychodynamic counsellor at Leicester University, and as a psychodynamic supervisor at Birmingham University. He led the MA in Psychodynamic Counselling at the University of Birmingham. He is a senior accredited counsellor and supervisor with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), was Chair of BACP’s Professional Ethics and Quality Standards Committee (2010-2015) and is Chair of BACP’s Expert Ethics Reference Group. He has also trained as a Psychodynamic Interpersonal Therapist and a Dynamic Interpersonal Therapist (accredited by the British Psychoanalytic Council). He is an accredited Baptist minister and on the editorial board of the journal Practical Theology and an international board member of the Society for the Exploration of Psychoanalytic Therapies and Theology (SEPTT). He is an associate member of the theology faculty in Oxford.

Alistair’s research focusses on the relationships between the sacred, spirituality, religion, psychoanalysis and psychotherapy. His latest book is Sigmund Freud: pocket GIANTS (The History Press, August 2016). Other recent books include Research Ethics for Counsellors, Nurses and Social Workers (with Dee Danchev, Sage 2014) and Counselling: A Practical Guide (Icon 2014). Lectures/articles/chapters include: ‘Michael Eigen – Psychoanalytic Mystic’, ‘Letters from Vienna: Freud and his friend Pastor Pfister’; ‘Sacred Psychoanalysis’ – the emergence of spirituality in contemporary psychoanalysis; ‘Spiritual factors in therapy’; ‘Harry Guntrip: an early relational psychoanalyst’; and ‘Winnicott’s analysis of Guntrip revisited’.

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