Tavistock Trauma Service: External lectures on trauma series

Course overview

This innovative series of lectures is organized by the Tavistock Trauma Service and is designed to reflect the clinical approach of the work, emphasizing an adapted psychoanalytic approach with multi-modality and trauma-informed care, using neurobiological and attachment theory to understand the impact of trauma.
The series will present a range of external speakers, experts in the field, who will bring their own understanding of trauma in a presentation, followed by an audience question and answer session.
It is aimed at all professionals working within the mental health field who have an interest in trauma. This would include psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, mental health nurses, support workers, counsellors and therapists.

To enable access to the widest possible audience these lectures are planned to be delivered live, but remotely, as webinars. Where we are able, a recording will be made available to all booked delegates although we encourage live attendance wherever possible. Please see the individual listings for details of which lectures will be recorded.

6th May 2021: Dr Daniel Taggart - ‘Why should we trust you when you don’t believe us - How can clinicians working with trauma survivors avoid causing more harm?’

This lecture is planned to be recorded

The establishment of trust is proposed as a central therapeutic task in working with trauma survivors and often the deficit in trust is proposed to reside in the patient. However as a number of high profile international Inquiries into historic and contemporary child abuse have shown, often Institutions are found to have acted in untrustworthy ways. While the Institutions identified have been public or religious bodies, there is evidence that a number of the ‘psy’ disciplines have a troubled history in how they respond to allegations of child sexual abuse in particular. Examples from the history of psychology, psychoanalysis and psychiatry illustrate that these disciplines have struggled to respond effectively to the importance of childhood trauma in the development of mental health problems and have sought to inspire doubt in the testimonies of survivors. While in some sense things may have moved on, there is still a need for these disciplines and their practitioners to reflect upon this history and to consider how its legacy can continue to impact trust in therapeutic relationships. Consideration will be given to what lessons clinicians can learn from processes of Transitional Justice that have shaped Public Inquiries' approach to validating survivors’ accounts of child abuse.

Dr Daniel Taggart is a Clinical Psychologist and the Academic Director of the Doctorate Program at the University of Essex. He is currently on a two year career break to work at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), where he is the Principal Psychologist and Clinical Lead for the Truth Project. The Truth Project offers adult survivors of child sexual abuse the opportunity to come and share their experience with the Inquiry to contribute to the knowledge base and to have an opportunity to have their experiences listened to. Previously Daniel has worked with adult with trauma histories in adult mental health and parent infant mental health settings. His research interests include; processes of retraumatisation for adult trauma survivors, the impacts of sexual abuse and Trauma Informed Approaches.

10th June 2021: Donald Campbell - Understanding a Pre-Suicide State of Mind

This lecture is planned to be recorded

In order to anticipate a suicide attempt, it is incumbent upon the clinician to understand the nature and function of a pre-suicide state of mind, which is influenced by a suicide fantasy that reflects the self’s aggressive relationship with its body and its primary objects. Understanding a Pre-Suicide State of Mind begins with Freud’s view in Mourning and Melancholia (1917) that, “sadism alone ... solves the riddle of the tendency to suicide...” and will explore the nature of ruthless and sadistic violence. Five common suicide fantasies will be discussed and illustrated with clinical vignettes. The father’s critical role in the outcome of a pre-suicide state will be described with particular attention to the way it is experienced in the counter-transference.

Donald Campbell is a training and supervising psychoanalyst, Distinguished Fellow, past President of the British Psychoanalytical Society, and former Secretary General of the International Psychoanalytic Association. He also served as Chair of the Portman in London, where he worked in outpatient psychoanalytic psychotherapy as a child, adolescent and adult analyst for 30 years with violent and delinquent individuals and patients suffering from a perversion. He has published papers and chapters on such subjects as adolescence, doubt, shame, metaphor, violence, perversion, child sexual abuse, and horror film monsters. In 2017 his paper “Self-analysis and the development of an interpretation” appeared in the International Journal of Psychoanalysis. Also, in 2017 he co-authored with Rob Hale, "Working in the Dark: Understanding the pre-suicide state of mind", which was published by Routledge.

1st July 2021: Prof. Peter Fonagy - Epistemic trust in relational trauma

This lecture will NOT be recorded

We have changed our mind about a number of things. For those of us working with the idea of failures of mentalizing and trauma, our original emphasis on attachment has shifted to seeing some of the failures of the challenges which childhood adversity can create into the sphere of communication. An improved evolutionary and developmental understanding of communication has helped us grasp better aspects of the sequela of relational trauma in children and adults. It has also pointed us towards an improved understanding of some of the societal problems facing us in a traumatised early first quarter of the 21st Century.

Professor Peter Fonagy OBE is Head of the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences at UCL; Chief Executive of the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, London; Consultant to the Child and Family Programme at the Menninger Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Sciences at Baylor College of Medicine; and holds visiting professorships at Yale and Harvard Medical Schools.
He has occupied a number of key national leadership positions including Chair of the Outcomes Measurement Reference Group at the Department of Health, Chair of two NICE Guideline Development Groups, Chair of the Strategy Group for National Occupational Standards for Psychological Therapies and co-chaired the Department of Health’s Expert Reference Group on Vulnerable Children.
His clinical interests centre on issues of early attachment relationships, social cognition, borderline personality disorder and violence. A major focus of his contribution has been an innovative research-based psychodynamic therapeutic approach, mentalization-based treatment, which was developed in collaboration with a number of clinical sites in the UK and USA. He has published over 500 scientific papers, 280 chapters and has authored or co-authored 20 books.
He is a Fellow of the British Academy, the Academy of Medical Sciences, the Academy of Social Sciences and the American Association for Psychological Science, and was elected to Honorary Fellowship by the American College of Psychiatrists. He has received Lifetime Achievement Awards from several national and international professional associations including the British Psychological Society, the International Society for the Study of Personality Disorder, the British and Irish Group for the Study of Personality Disorder, the World Association for Infant Mental Health and was in 2015 the first UK recipient of the Wiley Prize of the British Academy for Outstanding Achievements in Psychology by an international scholar.

The lectures will be held on 7th October, 4th November, 2nd December 2021.

Further details to follow.

It is aimed at all professionals working within the mental health field who have an interest in trauma. This would include psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, mental health nurses, support workers, counsellors and therapists. 

The talks will cover neurobiology, attachment theory and different psychoanalytic perspectives on trauma, including historical child sexual abuse.

  • Excellent, well presented and lively
  • Interesting, clear and insightful.
  • Well planned and delivered with such notable presenter.
  • Thought provoking, relevant and very interesting

The series will be delivered using Zoom. This is very easy and safe to use regardless of your level of IT skill.

You will need a device with a microphone and camera together with a suitably fast internet connection. Although mobile devices and tablets can be used, we recommend the use of laptop or desktop PC for the best experience. Some devices provided by employers may have restrictions in place. Please use this test link (https://zoom.us/test) to check your set up before booking.

You will be sent joining instructions including all the necessary login links, passwords and guidance on how to use the relevant functionality about a week before the lecture date.

Should you have any concerns about the accessibility of remote delivery please contact us at CPDEvents@tavi-port.ac.uk  to discuss how we can best help you.

We are keeping the mode of delivery for future series under careful review and will post further details here in due course.

Lectures will take place on Thursday evenings from 7pm to 8:30pm.

Summer Series: 6th  May 2021, 10th June 2021, 1st July 2021

Autumn Series: 7th October, 4th November, 2nd December 2021 

Each lecture costs £30, or £75 if all three in a series are booked together. 

To book individual lectures please click the relevant link: 

Summer Series

Dr Daniel Taggart - 6th May 2021

Donald Campbell - 10th June 2021

Prof. Peter Fonagy - 1st July 2021

To book all three summer lectures (May/Jun/Jul) please click here

Autumn Series

Bookings will open later in the Spring

Certificate of attendance
Admission status:
Course lead:
Joanne Stubley

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