The Spiritual and Depth Psychology Specialization in the MA in Clinical Psychology Department hosted their Annual Community Celebration with Keynote Speaker Fanny Brewster, PhD, MFA on June 10th in the AULA Library. The day began with Dr. Brewster’s lecture and Q&A session entitled “Honoring the Africanist Roots of Depth Jungian Psychology” which was followed by the Opening Ceremony and a communal dinner. After an open drum session, the attendees took part in a sharing circle where everyone present was encouraged to share their thoughts on the program and the event.
Dr. Brewster’s lecture focused on a subject of Jungian theory that is most often overlooked in the Depth Psychology community. Mark Silverstein, PhD, head of the SDP department at AULA, touched upon this issue in his opening remarks for the event and stressed the importance of taking action to make the community more inclusive for people of color. “Depth Psychology doesn’t have much of a future unless it evolves out of a white based paradigm,” Dr. Silverstein said. “It’s what we inherited…but now it needs to be taken up and that’s on our shoulders.”
Dr. Brewster is a Jungian analyst and author of poetry and nonfiction. Her book African Americans and Jungian Psychology: Leaving the Shadows was published by Routledge. She also has a forthcoming book, Archetypal Grief: Slavery’s Legacy of Intergenerational Child Loss forthcoming. Her poems from Journey: The Middle Passage have appeared in the Psychological Perspectives Journal in which she was a Featured Poet.
The sharing circle that took place afterward offered a chance for guests, alumni, and current students to share their thoughts. Those unfamiliar with the SDP program were pleasantly surprised by the welcoming and supportive atmosphere that was in the room, and students who chose SDP as their specialization were presented with gifts by alumni. Dr. Brewster also presented gifts to the new students as well as alumni who graduated from the program.
The opening ceremony created a camaraderie within and outside the program. Dr. Brewster’s lecture was an honest look at the challenges the Depth Psychology community at large is facing. The event was a starting point for people new to the program to delve into and those unfamiliar with the community to learn more about the field and its main goals.