Wednesday, October 2, 2019
2:00–4:00 p.m.


Alumni House Main Room

Integrative Individuation: An Alternative to the Separation-Individuation Model

Developmental theory is fundamental to all psychoanalytic thinking. And, in my view, culture is a fundamental determinant of development. Yet culture continues to be ignored and sidelined as a determinant of theory, and particularly, developmental theory. Bringing an Indian cultural perspective to this problem, I will outline an alternative to the deeply embedded notion of Separation-(as a prerequisite for)-Individuation. What I will argue for is a shift in our thought-paradigm. How this shift in thinking might impact clinical formulations, transference-countertransference experiences, as well as the broader cultural gestalt, will also be considered.

About the Lecturer

Gurmeet S. Kanwal, MD, is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Weill Medical College of Cornell University and Supervising Psychoanalyst at the William Alanson White Institute. He is the Past-President of the William Alanson White Psychoanalytic Society and an Editorial Board Member of the International Journal of Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Discourse. He is co-editor (with Salman Akhtar) of the books, Bereavement: Personal Experiences and Clinical Reflections (Karnac, 2017) and Intimacy: Clinical, Cultural, Digital and Developmental Perspectives (Routledge, 2019). His papers have been published in Contemporary Psychoanalysis, Neuropsychoanalysis, Psychoanalytic Review, and Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society. He is a three-time recipient of the Payne Whitney Clinic Psychiatric Residents’ Teacher of the Year award, and has lectured on psychoanalysis in India and Iran. Dr. Kanwal is a member of the Steering Committee for the 2020 Div 39 annual conference and will be chairing a panel on Trauma and Psychoanalysis. Current clinical and scholarly interests are focused on: the place of culture in psychoanalytic theory and practice; trauma in psychoanalytic theory and practice; issues related to immigration, identity and racism.


For further information, please contact:

Gordon F. Derner School of Psychology
p – 516.877.4800