In the Journals

Special issue of Clio’s Psyche on “Psychoanalytic Anthropology”

I recently edited a special issue of Clio’s Psyche on “psychoanalytic anthropology” which may be of interest to Somatosphere’s readers.  The issue contains 18 brief and accessible articles on a range of approaches in psychoanalytic anthropology as well as personal reflections from anthropologists working from a variety of psychoanalytic perspectives, including contributions from Robert LeVine, Ellen Corin, Howard Stein, and Allen Johnson.  In the introduction, I note that:

“The notion of a psychoanalytic and ethnographic toolkit is an adept metaphor for this issue. The contributing authors demonstrate a range of dialogues, integrations, and overlaps between anthropology and psychoanalysis in their theoretical discussions, personal reflections and histories, and psychoanalytically oriented ethnographic cases and interpretations.”

The special issue is relevant for those seeking an introduction to psychoanalytic anthropology and those interested in the emerging research and thinking at the intersections between anthropological and psychoanalytic method and theory.  Scholars interested in subjectivity, mental health, and medical anthropology will find several relevant articles.  Due to their size and format, many of the articles would also be useful for teaching.  The issue can be found here.

The table of contents is below:


Psychoanalytic Anthropology
Aaron Denham


Reflecting on How We Know

Dreamwork and Fieldwork in Sri Lanka
Bambi Chapin

Participant Observation in Toxic Interactions
April Leininger

Intercultural Transference and Countertransference in a Deeply Divided Society
Ekaterina Anderson

Countertransference in an Anthropological Study of Extreme Violence in Pakistan
Nichola Khan

Formalizing the Interpersonal in Anthropological Field Research
Ute Eickelkamp


Psychoanalytic Insights in Ethnography

Reconstituting Culturally Constituted Defense Mechanisms for Globalization
Heather Rae-Espinoza

DMT, Ecocide, and the Western Psyche
Sebastian Job

A Brief Psychoanalytic Ethnography of Speech and Knowledge among the Yagwoia
Jadran Mimica

Hidden Meanings at the Masters
Matthew Richard and Matt Newsom

Meaning and Political Subjectivity in Psychotic Illness
Sadeq Rahimi

Illness as Intimacy: Rethinking the Ego and the Id
Sara Bergstresser

The Mixed Legacy of Gregory Bateson
Philip Bock


Personal Reflections

Between Geertz and Kohut: Chicago in the 1960s
Robert LeVine

My Journey Toward and Within Psychoanalytic Anthropology
Howard Stein

The Work of the Other
Ellen Corin

Argentinidad or Neurosis?
Melissa Maldonado-Salcedo

Allen Johnson


Aaron Denham is a Lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia and a former fellow in the American Psychoanalytic Association’s Fellowship Program. His research and publications have addressed topics such as intergenerational trauma, child mortality, and infanticide discourse and practice in Northern Ghana.