Barcelona 2004 : Editor's Preface

Editor’s Preface

Lyn Cowan

Barcelona, the old, old city that is ever-renewing and changing its lovely face, was the setting for the Sixteenth International Congress for Analytical Psychology. More than 700 registrants convened from forty countries, more than 100 papers were presented, and the extraordinary range of subjects addressed took us to nearly every edge imaginable, in keeping with the theme of our Congress.

While this volume cannot recapture the immediacy of the emotional experience of that week, it represents the ongoing tradition of preserving our intellectual contribution to the field of psychology, adding to the already exceptional body of work that has emerged from the work of analytical psychologists around the world. It must be kept in mind, too, that the papers presented at this Congress represent less than half the number of proposals submitted, but this in no way reflects on the quality of those proposals – on the contrary, it testifies to the wealth of ideas and experience and the vitality of our collective Jungian enterprise.

We have indeed entered the digital age. This Congress marks a significant change in the way in which the Proceedings volume is produced: for the first time, the entire collection of papers, including illustrations, photographs, charts and drawings, is available on a compact disc. Owing to the much higher than usual number of presentations, it became economically unfeasible to print a single book; thus only the plenary session papers, and as many abstracts of shorter papers as authors wished to submit, have been included in this volume.

It should be noted that due to the very large number of papers, time did not permit the re-formatting of each individual author’s style of listing bibliographical references; the concern here was for completeness rather than conformity. The broad range of topics led to the decision to arrange the order of papers chronologically, as they were presented on the program schedule, rather than topically.

A word of thanks for providing helpful guidelines goes to my predecessor in this task, Mary Ann Mattoon, who served as editor for fifteen years, and whose work set a standard difficult to meet. Thanks also to Robert Hinshaw, publisher, whose support of the Proceedings publications is clearly a labor of love. Robert Imhoff has proven himself invaluable in helping me with torturous technological questions. I am grateful for the confidence Murray Stein expressed when he asked me to take on this work, and Beverley Zabriskie, in the midst of the Herculean task of organizing the program, kept me informed and connected from the beginning. Ursula Egli, who recently retired as Administrative Secretary to the President, was truly heroic in providing information, details, and constant encouragement.

The Congress in Barcelona took us, as members of a global psychological community, to the edges of experience and carried us back and forth in memory. It left us with a sense of the importance of our continuing emergence in a world tormented by terror and injustice, where we must speak for the recognition and understanding of psychic reality. And in such a world, as reflected so eloquently in the city which welcomed us, we were reminded that beauty, artistry, and the infinite variety of imaginal life are not merely extraneous luxuries, but the very foundation on which we build our human community.

Lyn Cowan
St. Paul, Minnesota USA
1 December 2005