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Scientific Program -- Elizabeth Kita, PhD
Saturday, October 24, 2020, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM EDT
Category: Scientific Programs

"Repairing the Irreparable, Bearing the Unbearable: Clinical work with formerly incarcerated people who have served life sentences"

with Elizabeth (Beth) Kita, PhD, LCSW

Program Description

People who commit irreparable acts of violence are often assumed to not want to know what they have done; psychoanalysis suggests that perhaps they do not always know how to know what they have done. In this paper, I discuss my clinical work with people who, sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of murder, have now returned home. I explore the ways in which “lifers” have often spent decades developing the capacity to reckon with what they have done (and, frequently, what was done to them) despite being confined in traumatogenic institutions that functioned to thwart such growth. Using case material, I reflect on the ways in which psychodynamic theory helps me to navigate the overwhelm of violent crimes and violent punishments, and the unresolved trauma that usually precedes both. I’ll offer some ideas about how we might learn from lifers about how we can and why we should develop our collective capacities to bear and to repair - in the hopes of transforming the trauma that incarceration reenacts.

ReGister Here for the Presentation

When:  Saturday, October 24, 2020  
Where: Virtual via Zoom
Time: 10 a.m. - 12 noon Eastern
Cost: $45, No Charge for PCC members, LDC staff & board, full-time students with ID and trainees in the departments of social work, psychology, psychiatry and mental health counseling.

CME credits: 2 / CE Credits: 2 / NBCC: 2 clock hours / All others: Letter of Attendance  

Registration Closes: Wednesday October 21 at 10 p.m.

Needs based scholarships are available upon request. Contact the Programs Manager for details.

About the Presenter:  Elizabeth Kita, PhD, LCSW, is a clinical social worker in public/private practice in San Francisco, California. In her private practice, she works primarily with people contending with the effects of complex posttraumatic stress and vicarious traumatization; her work in a public clinic is with people who are returning to the community following lengthy periods of incarceration. She obtained her MSW from UC Berkeley and her PhD from Smith College, School for Social Work. In addition to her clinical work, Beth teaches in the MSW program at UC Berkeley, and is the Co-Chair of the Coalition for Clinical Social Work at the San Francisco Center for Psychoanalysis. She thinks, writes, presents and consults on the intersections of race/racism, trauma, violence, incarceration and psychodynamic social work praxis in the United States.

Leaning Objectives: By the end of the session, learners should be able to:

  1. Describe the proliferation of life sentences in the United States and its disproportionate impact on Black and Brown people.
  2. Identify some of the reasons, from a psychoanalytic perspective, why people who commit murder and are sentenced to life in prison are driven to understand and transform the harm they’ve caused.
  3. Explain why working with people who have endured and perpetrated violence can be challenging for clinicians. 
This program is intended for psychologists, psychiatrists, clinical social workers, licensed professional counselors, and other clinicians at an intermediate to advanced level.
Register Here for the Presentation

CE & CME Information:

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of American Psychoanalytic Association and Psychoanalytic Center of the Carolinas. The American Psychoanalytic Association is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The American Psychoanalytic Association designates this Live Activity for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION FOR ALL LEARNERS: None of the planners and presenters of this CME program have any relevant financial relationships to disclose

The Psychoanalytic Center of the Carolinas is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Psychoanalytic Center of the Carolinas maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

The Psychoanalytic Center of the Carolinas has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6518. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. The Psychoanalytic Center of the Carolinas is solely responsible for all aspects of the program.

If you have special needs or want information about our cancellation policy, please contact the Programs Manager at [email protected], or leave message at 919-490-3212.

Contact: [email protected]