Panel IAAP/IPA: Symbols and Symbolisation in Clinical Practice and in Elisabeth Márton’s Film

Introduction to the Panel

Murray Stein
Goldiwil, Switzerland
Schwizerische Gesellschaft für Analytische Psychologie
(Chicago Society of Jungian Analysts, Honorary Member)

It is a great pleasure to welcome you to this panel made up jointly of IAAP members and IPA members. Let me say just a few words about this historic occasion.

I met Alain Gibeault at the JAP conference in Prague several years ago and found him to be an open and friendly person with a genuine interest in what we Jungians are doing and thinking. At the time, he was Secretary General of the IPA, a position he held with great distinction until last year. (He is now on the Executive Committee of the Paris Psychoanalytic Society.) He had been deeply involved already at that time for many years in setting up psychoanalytic training opportunities in Eastern Europe, especially in Russia. When at the end of the conference I asked him if it might be possible to change the strained relations between the IAAP and the IPA, he was open to the question and we agreed to meet again sometime in Paris where he lives and works as a psychoanalyst. This was the beginning.

Several months later, when I was in Paris on IAAP business, I invited him to dinner along with Christian Gaillard and Joe Cambray, and at that point we discussed the possibility of creating some jointly sponsored events such as this one. It was at his initiative that a joint panel was set up for the IPA Congress held last March in New Orleans (originally scheduled for the summer of 2003 in Toronto but changed due to SARS). Christian Gaillard and I participated on that panel with Alain Gibeault and Svi Lothan, chaired by Marcio Giovannetti. This marked the first time IAAP members have participated officially as such at an IPA Congress, and it was probably the first time Jungians have spoken at an IPA Congress since Jung resigned in 1914.

Today we have the opportunity to reciprocate this gesture of cooperation by hosting IPA members Alain Gibeault and his wife Monique, who is also a practicing psychoanalyst in Paris and who will read Marcio Giovannetti’s paper since he cannot attend the Congress due to illness. On the panel, as well, are IAAP members Jean Kirsch from San Francisco and Gert Sauer from Stuttgart. The topic of the panel, symbolization in clinical practice and in the film Ich hiess Sabina Spielrein, continues the theme that was touched upon and begun in New Orleans at the IPA Congress. We hope that this panel will be stimulating and will lead to more of the same type of cooperative exchanges in the future.