Psychoanalytic Dialogues. 32(6):584-597.
When Racialized Ghosts Refuse to Become Ancestors: Tasting the "Blood of Recognition" in Racial Melancholia and Mixed-Race Identities.
Experiences of feeling haunted and of being in the presence of ghosts are prominent in narratives of patients/people of color in the United States and of mixed-race identity. A creative reading of Hans Loewald’s evocative statement on therapeutic action, the process of transforming “ghosts into ancestors,” is used to explore a way of being with and healing patients with mixed-race identities who are imprisoned in melancholic states.
Psychoanalytic Dialogues. 32(6) 615-620.m
Step Through and Command the Islands to Exist: Response to Commentaries by Lara Sheehi and Shifa Haq.
Racialized trauma and racial enactments are ubiquitous and frequently emerge in our clinical work with marginalized patients. Both Shifa Haq and Lara Sheehi develop compelling and creative explications of “racial ghosts” in my essay “When Racialized Ghosts Refuse to Become Ancestors: Tasting Loewald’s ‘Blood of Recognition’ in Racial Melancholia and Mixed-Race Identities” and offer significant clinical insights in treating racial trauma. After framing the discussion with several key questions I struggle with in the clinic, I engage with both Haq and Sheehi’s essays and their relevance in treating patients with racial trauma.
Psychoanalytic Quarterly 89: 399-413.
Dangerous Territory: Racist Moments in the Psychoanalytic Space.
Shah, D (2020).
Racism and racist fantasies are inherent to being human yet have had profound traumatic effects on an individual and collective scale. Lurking in the shadows, racist images, fantasies, and attitudes can suddenly enter the analytic space and disrupt the psychic functioning of both the analyst and patient. A personal experience with racism outside the office is presented with clinical material involving my struggle in the countertransference around racist material that is brought up by my patient.
Psyche 74: 800-825.
The Analyst Torn Apart: Jealousy in the Countertransference.
Shah, D (2020).
To experience jealousy is to experience mental torture. Jealousy feels visceral and urgent, pressing for action or relief. One literally feels torn up inside, imprisoned in a cage of longing and exclusion. Searing hot-blooded psychic pain combined with unrelenting desire feels unbearable and excruciating. Jealousy does not have the advantage of being an experience that feels noble or moral. In fact, it is quite the reverse—it feels shameful and filled with hatred.
London: Karnac Press.
Arrogance in the Countertransference.
Shah, D , In S. Akhtar, M O'Neil (eds). Arrogance.
The arrogant psychoanalyst is a pervasive stereotype in our culture. “Why are psychoanalysts so damn arrogant?” This question has haunted me in countless ways ‒ at conferences, dinner parties, and in casual conversations ‒ even by strangers upon discovering what I do for a living. In an absurd, memorable, moment ten years ago, a woman dressed in a banana costume, dancing and singing on Park Avenue in New York, began chanting: “Freud is an arrogant fraud” when she discovered I was in psychoanalytic training. It feels as though the general census within and outside of the psychoanalytic community is that we are an arrogant bunch.
London: Karnac Press.
Hopelessness in the Countertransference.
In: S. Akhtar, M. O'Neil(eds). Hopelessness: Developmental, Cultural and Clinical Realms. (pp 181-200).
In this chapter, the author describes the feelings of hopelessness within the analyst. This often unspoken experience can cause disruptions in the analyst's ability to empathize with and deepen the analytic experience for the patient. The experience of hopelessness is a frequent visitor to the analytic setting.
New York: Guilford Press
Horrified and Guilty.
In: S. Summers, J. Barber (eds) Practicing Psychodynamic Therapy: A Casebook (pp 208-224).