Transgender, Gender & Psychoanalysis

The SITE for Contemporary Psychoanalysis and The Freud Museum present:

Transgender, Gender and Psychoanalysis

A two-day conference

11 – 12 March 2017

9.30am – 5.00pm


This event is now FULLY BOOKED.
Click here to be added to the waiting list






The struggles of people of transgender identity have exploded into mainstream consciousness. By crossing the ‘gender divide’, the trans movement has radicalised the question of what it means to be a man or a woman, uncovering a fertile and conflicting arena in which the emancipatory deconstruction of sexual identity flirts with the certainties of essentialism.

Such a reshuffling of binary and non-binary categories confronts psychoanalysis with new clinical, political and theoretical challenges that push it out of its comfort zone. How can contemporary psychoanalysis meet the demands and the needs that such challenges yield? What does psychoanalysis have to lose? And what does it stand to gain?

The 2017 SITE Conference in collaboration with the Freud Museum will approach these questions critically while exploring new horizons from which to address the complex issues of sexual identity and gendered positioning.



Click here to find out about the Conference Fringe



Patricia Gherovici
Jaywalking: Is Psychoanalysis Ready for a Transition?

Jo Clifford
Learning to love myself as my neighbour: one individual’s reflection on being transgendered

Domenico di Ceglie
The Use of Metaphors in Understanding Atypical Gender Identity Development and its Psychosocial Impact

Damian McCann
The Couple in Transition

Julie Walsh
Establishing the Lines between Trans-Gender-Feminisms

Clinical Round Table with James Mann, Francesca Joseph and others, chaired by Stephen Gee.


Dina Al-Kassim
Transnational Subjectivities from Tehran to Laplanche

Sheila Cavanagh
Tiresias and the Other Sexual Difference: Bracha L. Ettinger and Jacques Lacan

Juliet Jacques
The Woman in the Portrait

Dany Nobus
Choose Your Gender! Tyrannical Freedom and Trivial Selectivity in 21st Century Sexual Identity Politics

Henry Strick van Linschoten
Ways in which Gender can be Embodied: Psychotherapeutic Considerations

Plenary discussion and thinking time


Click for all Conference abstracts



Patricia Gherovici, Ph.D. is a psychoanalyst and analytic supervisor. She is co-founder and director of the Philadelphia Lacan Group and Associate Faculty, Psychoanalytic Studies Minor, University of Pennsylvania (PSYS), Honorary Member at IPTAR the Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research in New York City and Member at Apres-Coup Psychoanalytic Association New York. Her books include The Puerto Rican Syndrome (Other Press: 2003), winner of the Gradiva Award and the Boyer Prize, and Please Select Your Gender: From the Invention of Hysteria to the Democratizing of Transgenderism (Routledge: 2010). She has published two collections (both with Manya Steinkoler) Lacan On Madness: Madness, Yes You Can’t (Routledge, 2015) and Lacan, Psychoanalysis and Comedy (Cambridge University Press, 2016). Her new book Psychoanalysis Needs a Sex Change: Lacanian Approaches to Sexual and Social Difference is forthcoming by Routledge.

Jo Clifford is a writer, performer, poet and teacher based in Edinburgh. She is the author of about 80 plays, many of which have been translated into various languages and performed all over the world. She is an Associate Artist of Chris Goode and Company. Her transition from John to Jo has enabled her to become an actor and performer. She will be performing the London premiere of her renowned play “The Gospel according to Jesus Queen of Heaven” inaugurating the 2017 theatre season at Draper Hall, produced by Infallible Productions Ltd and part of The Fringe events of the conference

A humane, mischievous and loving solo show, where the world is reimagined as a far better, kinder and more tolerant place‘ Lynn Gardner – The Guardian

Domenico di Ceglie is Lifetime Honorary Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at the Tavistock Centre, London. In 1989 he founded the Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS), a specialist service for children, adolescents and their families facing gender identity issues, now based at the Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Trust. He was service Director until March 2009. He teaches in the Department of Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology at UCL and at La Sapienza University, Rome. He has published papers about his work and edited a book A Stranger in My Own Body – Atypical Gender Identity Development and Mental Health (Karnac Books, London).

Damian McCann is a couple psychoanalytic psychotherapist working as head of learning and development at Tavistock Relationships. He is also a consultant systemic psychotherapist working in a child and adolescent mental health service and is an associate of Pink Therapy where he teaches on the diploma in relationship therapy for gender and sexual diversities. His doctoral research was concerned with understanding the meaning and management of violence in the couple relationships of gay men.

Julie Walsh is a Global Research Fellow at the University of Warwick, and a psychoanalyst in private practice in North London. Her first book Narcissism and Its Discontents was published with Palgrave in 2015; she has published numerous articles on different facets of psychoanalysis and their relation to culture, literature and politics, and has a particular interest in thinking psychosocially about clinical work. Julie is a member of the Site for Contemporary Psychoanalysis, and of the College of Psychoanalysts UK; she also co-convenes the British Sociological Association’s study group for Sociology, Psychoanalysis and the Psychosocial.

Dina Al-Kassim is a critical theorist who works on political subjectivation, sexuality and aesthetics in transnational modernist and contemporary postcolonial cultures, including the Middle East, Africa, Europe and the United States. She is an Associate Professor at the Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver (Canada) and the author of On Pain of Speech: Fantasies of the First Order and the Literary Rant (University of California Press, 2010).

Sheila Cavanagh is Associate Professor of sociology at York University, Toronto (Canada). She is chair of the Canadian Sexuality Studies Association and co-editor of the Somatechnics journal. Her research is in the area of gender and sexuality with a concentration on queer, cultural, and psychoanalytic theories. She is currently editing a special issue on transgender and psychoanalysis in Transgender Studies Quarterly. She is also the author of Sexing the Teacher: School Sex Scandals and Queer Pedagogies (UBC, 2007) and Queering Bathrooms (UTP, 2010).

Juliet Jacques is a freelance author based in London, a journalist, critic and writer of short fiction, known for her work on the transgender experience, including her transition as a trans woman.

Dany Nobus is Professor of Psychoanalytic Psychology and Pro-Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs at Brunel University London, where he also convenes the MA Programme in Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Society. In addition, he is the Chair of the Freud Museum London, and the author of numerous publications on the history, theory and practice of psychoanalysis. In April 2017, he will be presented with the Sarton medal of the University of Ghent for his contributions to the history and theory of psychoanalysis, and this will coincide with the publication of a new book entitled The Law of Desire: On Lacan’s “Kant with Sade”.

Henry Strick van Linschoten is a psychotherapist in private practice, based in London, UK. He is an attachment-based psychoanalytic psychotherapist, specialising in relationships, sexual, gender and relational diversity, trauma and dissociation. He is an Advisor to Confer, and has made contributions to Confer and the Open University. He is a registered member of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP), a member of the European Society for Trauma and Dissociation (ESTD) and registered with Pink Therapy. In his earlier career, he graduated in Development Economics, Econometrics and Statistics, and was an international businessman. Preferred pronouns: he / his.