Where Is the Unconscious Today?

Conference in English and German


Saturday, 18 March, 9:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. at the Sigmund Freud Museum, Berggasse 19, 1090 Vienna

Free admission, please register below

In this international conference, we intend to examine the different aspects of the unconscious, its history, its effects and importance in todays’s analytic, sociopolitical and aesthetic discourses. While the unconscious was traditionally thought to be located in dreams, slips of the tongue, parapraxes and jokes, and linked with the psychic operation of repression, nowadays the unconscious is conceptualized more horizontally: it is thought to be experienced more in the in-between of the analytic dyad, at least for psychoanalysts identified with the Bionian, Winnicottian and Relational School. In contrast, the schools of Lacan are more bound to Freud’s early model of the unconscious and locate it in the signifiers of the spoken language of the analysand. Is the unconscious thus to be detected in words or in the in-between or how are we to think of these ‘princely’ roads to the unconscious? Given the fact that not a few of those processes which guide and limit us do not reach consciousness, other disciplines than psychoanalysis – the so called “Science of the Unconscious – have also searched for the unconscious. Some claim that art and literature is the most privileged “playground” of the unconscious, others think that it is possible to find it in the brain. The conference approaches these discourses and attempts by an interdisciplinary perspective.


Programme (PDF):


10:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.: Panel I (English):

Giuseppe Civitarese: The Un/Conscious as a Psychoanalytic Function of Personality

Bernard Toboul: Language and the Real

Moderated by Jeanne Wolff Bernstein


2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.: Panel 2 (German)

Jan Lohl: ‘Ich will mein Deutschland wiederhaben‘. Zur psychoanalytischen Sozialpsychologie der Fremdenfeindlichkeit

Helmut Dahmer: ‘Jews‘ und ‘Alis‘. Um-Adressierung eines Vorurteils

Moderated by Markus Brunner


4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.: Panel 3 (German)

August Ruhs: Das Unbewusste zwischen Festplatte und Bildschirm

Edith Seifert: Das Unbewusste als 'Missing Link'. Über den 'Gap' zwischen Neurowissenschaft und psychoanalytischer Theorie

Moderated by Daniela Finzi


For information about the opening lecture Freudianism and the Twentieth Century Left by Eli Zaretsky on Friday, 17 March, 8 p.m., Billrothhaus, Frankgasse 8, 1090 Vienna, click here …





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Currently closed.

Open every day (Monday – Sunday)
10.00 a.m. – 6.00 p.m.