Cinematic Encounters with Violent Trauma and Its Aftermath

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This piece provides a context for articles by horror studies theorist Gavin Wilkinson and psychoanalytic practitioners Dr Olga Cox Cameron, John O’Donoghue and Dr Laura Tarafás through a discussion of an interdisciplinary event I convened at the Science Gallery in Dublin entitled 'Cinematic Encounters with Violent Trauma and Its Aftermath' (2016). This event brought psychoanalytic thinking into dialogue with other disciplines, including film studies, visual culture, race and ethnicity studies, creative arts practice, curatorship, clinical psychology, forensic psychotherapy, psychosocial studies, neuropsychoanalysis, and horror studies. Through a series of responses from experts in the aforementioned fields, audience members were facilitated to reflect on their experience of watching a screening of Joshua Oppenheimer’s documentary, 'The Act of Killing' (2012). The event emphasised the usefulness of registering and reflecting on the experiences evoked in us by films, such as 'The Act of Killing'. These experiences offer psychoanalysts and psychotherapists an opportunity to think together about how we approach working psychoanalytically with patients who have experienced violent trauma, and how such work might be impacting on each of us unconsciously as individuals and as a group of psychoanalytic practitioners.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92
Number of pages101
JournalLacunae: APPI International Journal for Lacanian Psychoanalysis
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - Jul 2020


  • Psychoanalysis
  • Psychotherapy
  • Violent Trauma
  • Spectatorship
  • The Act of Killing (2012)
  • Science Gallery Dublin
  • Vicarious Trauma


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