Development of psychoanalytic theory: lecture series

Course overview

This lunchtime lecture series will offer you a systematic introduction and overview of the development of psychoanalytic theory from Freud to the present day.

This lunchtime lecture series will offer you a chronological overview of the development of psychoanalytic theory. It begins with two introductory lectures that situate psychoanalysis within a broad cultural and epistemological context. This is followed by a systematic overview of key concepts in the development of Freud’s theory. The second half of the course covers contemporary developments and includes the work of Anna Freud, Klein, Winnicott, Segal, Rosenfeld and Bion

This course will provide you with a thorough knowledge of psychoanalytic theory in a way that will be relevant to any kind of work in the mental health field. 

What our students say:

"Great lecture series – creative and thought-provoking. David Bell’s style of explanation was very good – he brings a sense of personal engagement which adds nuance and opens space for personal exploration of the concepts."

"I loved the way that clinical, political and literal examples were weaved together to illustrate psychoanalytic concepts and ideas, it has really brought them alive"

"Excellent course expertly  delivered, it was useful and important, thought provoking and leaves you wanting a lot more"

This course is for you if you are interested in gaining a thorough introduction to psychoanalytic concepts. You do not need any prior knowledge of psychoanalysis, though it could be useful. You might be a psychotherapist, a psychologist, a psychiatrist, a social worker, an academic (from the humanities or sciences) or a professional who already has some knowledge of psychoanalytic theory but would like to revisit it in a systematic way.

In order to undertake this course, we ask that you have an interest in psychoanalytic concepts.

The lecture series takes place weekly on a Wednesday, from 11.45am - 1.10pm, throughout the 2019-20 academic year. A full timetable will provided here in due course.

Included in your course fee, you will receive full membership of the Tavistock’s internationally-renowned library for the duration of your course.

Our friendly and knowledgeable library team will help to support you through your specialist CPD course, whatever your level of professional or academic experience. You will have access to an extensive range of eBooks, online journals, all the relevant key databases and our specialist audio-visual collection plus reference access to all our print books. Our Information Skills Trainer has made lots of material available on Moodle to help you to navigate our comprehensive electronic collections.  PCs and photocopiers are also available for your use.

Library staff curate various online resources, such as Audio/Video Playlists and Subject Updates, to help you stay on top of latest developments, as well as regularly sharing helpful news and research on Twitter and Facebook. Find out more on the Library website:

Certificate of attendance
Course length:
1 year
Tavistock Centre, 120 Belsize Lane, NW3 5BA
Admission status:
October 2018 to July 2019
Course lead:
David Bell

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