This talk opens up the question of how and which Freud came to California’s shores, what Fernando Castrillón is terming ‘Freud’s seduction‘. As such this historical question sets the background for the theoretical and clinical formulations Castrillón is advancing in his multi-volume book project, California Psychoanalyst: Subjectivity and Clinical Praxis in the Far West, in which he journeys through what he calls the Californication of psychoanalysis – a kind of reformulation of analytic praxis and priority – so as to say something about the subject of the unconscious and contemporary (and future) clinical practice both in the far American West and globally. While an analysis of Freud’s reception is an interesting question to ask of any place, in other words how psychoanalysis came to take root (or not) in a specific locale and time, it becomes a particularly noteworthy interrogation when one considers the peculiar case of California and its history of émigré analysts, such as Siegfried Bernfeld, Ernst Simmel, and Otto Fenichel, who fled to the state in the 1930s. For as the audience will see, the history of psychoanalysis and that of California (at least in its Anglophone iteration) are nearly coterminous. Or by way of a tease, Freud came to California precisely because California came to be…

Fernando Castrillón, Psy.D. is a personal and supervising psychoanalyst and Editor-in-Chief of the European Journal of Psychoanalysis. He is a member of the Elvio Fachinelli Institute for Advanced Studies in Psychoanalysis, based in Rome, Italy, serves as faculty with the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PINC) and is on the Board of Directors of the Berkeley Psychoanalytic Society. He is also a Professor in the Community Mental Health Department at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) and served as the founding director of CIIS’ The Clinic Without Walls. Recent publications include No Leaders/No Masses: Virtuality and Contemporary Group Life in the Shadow of Freud and Denying Death its Due: Ecological Discourse, Technology & the Unconscious. His latest book, Coronavirus, Psychoanalysis, and Philosophy: Conversations on Pandemics, Politics, and Society, co-edited with Thomas Marchevsky, was published in 2021. Fernando Castrillon maintains a private psychoanalytic practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. Home page:

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The lecture series is a cooperation of the Berlin Institute for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis (BiPP), the Cultural Science Institute of the Humboldt University Berlin, the International Psychoanalytic University (IPU), and the ICI Berlin, organized by Wilhelm Brüggen (BIPP), Monika Englisch (BIPP) and Andreas Gehrlach (HU Berlin), funded by the Friedrich Stiftung.

KV Castrillon Psychoanalytische KW

Photo Credits © Walid Abdelnour