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Culture, Migration and Identity Issues in the Interface with Trauma

Format Seminar/Presentation
Presenters Amanda Dowd and Nooria Mehraby
Description The Meaning of Place and Psycho-Cultural Border-Zones: reflections on migration, trauma, shame, legitimacy and identity

An immigrant is defined as someone who has moved or been moved from one familiar place to another unfamiliar place, but to be an immigrant, rather than to simply intellectually know it, "one must inhabit mental and emotional states that are not easy to endure ...The nature of [this] pain ... permits no easy definition. Although linked to feelings of loss, it is not what could be called depression nor is it, strictly speaking, anxiety though it does include elements of anguish. People usually experience it as something nearly if it lies on the border between the physical and the mental". This is a good description of the experience of the particular mental pain of being displaced; it is a state which occasions extreme anxiety, alienation and dissociation because something previously taken-for-granted can feel traumatically ruptured or even catastrophically lost. This state, which can be difficult to recognise and articulate, is camouflaged by intense shame.

In this presentation Amanda will introduce audiences to her thinking about the meaning of 'place' and the traumatic experience of displacement with special attention given to the way in which it complicates the clinical picture when working with individuals who have already experienced the traumatic effects of being cast out of the taken-for-granted realms of human contact and love by early relational failures and by the violations of abuse and torture.
About the presenter(s) Amanda Dowd
Amanda Dowd is a Jungian Analyst and psychoanalytic psychotherapist who trained in Australia and is a member of the Australia and New Zealand Society of Jungian Analysts (ANZSJA) and the International Association of Analytical Psychology (IAAP). She has a private practice comprising people from diverse backgrounds and ethnicities located in the eastern suburbs of Sydney where she has worked for almost 20 years. Amanda is a British-born migrant to Australia who spent her adolescent and University years in Christchurch, New Zealand. She has a background in ecology, ancient history and religious studies. Her theoretical orientation is developmental and relational and her particular interests are trauma and the formation of mind, self, identity and cultural identity, and especially the relationship between self and place and what happens in the interface between person and culture. She has lectured and published widely on these themes both at home and internationally, most recently in St Petersburg Russia. Her book Placing Psyche: Exploring Cultural Complexes in Australia, co-edited with Dr Craig San Roque and Dr David Tacey, was published earlier this year.
Location NSW Metro, Australia
Venue STARTTS - Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors
152-168 The Horsley Dr, Carramar

Please contact the event organiser to confirm if this venue is wheelchair accessible
Start/End Date 27 Nov 2012
Time 6-8pm
Cost Free to attend in person, $5.99 to watch the internet broadcast
Notes Please visit STARTTS' website ( for a flyer and to RSVP to attend in person or Register for the live broadcast.
Organiser STARTTS
Contact Name Melanie Leemon
Telephone 02 9794-1898
Fax 02 9794-1910