Wednesday 1 January 2020

Mutual Analysis: Sándor Ferenczi, Elizabeth Severn, and the Origins of Trauma Theory. Peter Rudnytsky conducts Inner Circle Seminar 256 (1 March 2020)

Mutual Analysis

Sándor Ferenczi, Elizabeth Severn,
and the Origins of Trauma Theory

Peter Rudnytsky
Inner Circle Seminar No. 256
introduced by
Anthony Stadlen
Sunday 1 March 2020
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sándor Ferenczi
Elizabeth Severn

On 1 April 2012 Professor Peter L. Rudnytsky conducted the electrifying Inner Circle Seminar No. 175, The Aetiology of Psychoanalysis: Freud’s Abuser, Sibling Incest, and the Affair with Minna Bernays.
Angela Buxton, an existential therapist who attended, wrote:
Many thanks for another excellent seminar. This one has shaken to its foundations the way I think about Freud and his writings. I found Prof. Rudnytsky’s work particularly convincing because it fits so well with what I hear when I work phenomenologically with clients who were abused as children.
Today Peter Rudnytsky  continues to report his fundamental researches into the relationship between the early development of psychoanalysis and the sexual abuse of children. His focus in this seminar moves from Freud to Ferenczi.
Sándor Ferenczi’s experiment in mutual analysis with Elizabeth Severn has hitherto been known from Ferenczi’s Clinical Diary, where Severn appears as R.N. But in his new edition of Severn’s 1933 book, The Discovery of the Self, Professor Peter Rudnytsky has shown that Severn gives us the other side of the story by providing disguised case histories both of herself and of Ferenczi. In todays seminar, Rudnytsky will lead us in a consideration of how Ferenczi and the woman whom Freud called his evil genius together revolutionised psychoanalysis by reviving trauma theory, modifying technique, and formulating a theory of the mind based on dissociation rather than repression.

Venue:  ‘Oakleigh’, 2A Alexandra AvenueLondon N22 7XE
Cost: Psychotherapy trainees £132, others £165, some bursaries; coffee, tea, biscuits, berries, nuts, mineral water included; payable in advance; no refunds or transfers unless seminar cancelled
Apply to: Anthony Stadlen, ‘Oakleigh’, 2A Alexandra Avenue, London N22 7XE
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8888 6857   iPhone: +44 (0) 7809 433250
E-mail:  or:
For further information on seminars, visit:

The Inner Circle Seminars were founded by Anthony Stadlen in 1996 as an ethical, existential, phenomenological search for truth in psychotherapy. They have been kindly described by Thomas Szasz as ‘Institute for Advanced Studies in the Moral Foundations of Human Decency and Helpfulness’. But they are independent of all institutes, schools and universities.

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