Letter of Chairperson

by Dorothee C. von Tippelskirch-Eissing

Since our last Newsletter, from February 2016, where we informed you about some of the changes of PCCA, more than a year has passed by. We used this time to adapt to our new situation and to find our way in different ways:

There were changes in the PCCA board: some members left, other joined: Karin Lueders and Hermann Beland and Veronika Grueneisen. We are grateful that all our former and founding members of PCCA have agreed to cooperate with us in specific ways on concrete projects.

Karin Lueders continues to edit our Newsletter. Veronika Grueneisen continues together with Fakhry Davids to develop a PCCA project with Palestinians. They are developing a network of Palestinians who consider our work as useful for them. Appropriate events will be designed according to expressed needs. Hermann Beland has expressed a specific interest to be involved in think about a future project of PCCA concerning the situation of refugees in Europe and elsewhere.

We have invited some colleagues to join the Board and we are very happy that they have responded with great generosity to offer their time and energy and skills and capacities in order to cooperate with us and develop the work of PCCA further. Our aim, working with the impact of societal conflict, has proofed to be a core concept that has persuaded them to join in.

We have welcomed Oren Kaplan, who has worked with us in two different conferences (2012 and 2014), Nadine Tchelebi, with whom we have worked together on staff in our last conference in Kliczków (2016), and Christoph Freytag, whom we got to know in our last conference as well. They have written a short presentation of themselves for our NL so that you can get to know some of their motivation to join us.

We will have a first opportunity to working together at the occasion of our next annual meeting, in Jerusalem, September 2nd to 4th 2017.

Ten years ago, on July 20th in 2007 PCCA has been established. We will celebrate these ten years, an important achievement for our organization during our meeting. The choice of the meeting place will allow some of us to stay for the celebration of 30 years of OFEK, one of our partners in the work and sponsors since many years. We have decided to co-sponsor the OFEK event, which has the title:  “Unstable world/s. Today’s Societal Issues through a Group Relations Lens”. It takes place in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem from September 7th-9th 2017, directed by our colleague Mira Erlich-Ginor. (For more information see the announcement in the NL or website of OFEK.)

Fakhry Davids and Veronika Grueneisen will make use of the opportunity to develop the project with our Palestinian partners.

As you know in April 2016, we hold the last of a series of three Conferences in Kliczków (Poland), all three under the directorate of H. Shmuel Erlich (see his report on the Conference in this NL). Judging by many responses, a great deal of learning seems to have taken place. We are deeply grateful to Shmuel Erlich who launched this series of conferences in 2012 with a focus on Europe, on the currently burning issues in Europe and elsewhere, taking our work to a new territory both physically and symbolically.

We also wish to congratulate him at this occasion to his 80th birthday in July.  His wife, our colleague, Mira Erlich-Ginor has edited a book, a Festschrift, for him, to which many of his colleagues, among them some of our PCCA colleagues, have contributed. The book has just been printed on time to be presented at a book launch at the IPAC in Buenos Aires these days. It can be ordered here.

In the Festschrift: “Not Knowing – Knowing – Not Knowing”, New York 2017 you will find as well the English version of his Psychoanalytic Autobiography, first published in German, under the title: “Migration und Heimkehr – eine psychoanalytische Autobiographie” (“Migration and Homecoming”) in a book, ed. by Ludger M. Hermanns, Psychoanalyse in Selbstdarstellungen, vol. XI, Frankfurt a.M. 2017. We wish Shmuel all the best for the following years to come. And we add our hopes for our ongoing cooperation with him.

We are pleased to announce our next conference. Louisa D. Brunner will direct the upcoming conference.

PCCA Conference 2018

30th August – 3rd September

Exclusion, Resentment and the Return of the Repressed.

Europe in a Globalized world.

It will take place  the Netherlands, location to be announced. See more in the announcement in this NL.

Supporting Members: As we want to make the work of PCCA known to a wider public, we are in the midst of creating a structure of “Supporting Members” of PCCA. We want to invite you to become a supporting member of PCCA. Everyone who is willing to support our work with a regular financial contribution as well as with some kind of a specific engagement can become a supporting member, we have informed you about this in the last NL.

Ekkehard Raehmer, a medical doctor, psychotherapist, with experiences in fundraising, Bettina Jesberg, a psychoanalyst and member of many of the PCCA conferences in the past, will join me in ,  creating a network of supporting members on a national and international level. We hope to find one or two supporting members in different countries and regions, who might be interested to become engaged and to help us create a network in their context. We will inform you about events that we may develop together with our supporting members.

A good start: : Allan Shafer, a colleague with whom we have worked together in two conferences in Kliczków in 2014 and 2016 and who is actually the Past President of Group Relations Australia (GRA)has agreed to become a supporting member and to cooperate with PCCA. As the key aim of GRA is: ‘to play a socially responsible role, taking up, wherever appropriate and within scope of the organisation’s purpose, current issues in society’, GRA seems to be a “natural” partner for PCCA.GRA has run a Seeking Asylum Project for 3 years which culminated in a special issue of their journal Socioanalysis on “Seeking Asylum”, edited by Allan Shafer. In the NL you can find a short presentation of this project by Allan. Veronika Grueneisen has published a paper in this volume of the journal Socioanalysis under the title: “How to Respond to Xenophobia: a Concrete Incident and Reactions and Responses it Elicited”.  We are grateful that GRA has allowed us to publish Veronika’s paper in our NL, and in publishing her paper we also wish to draw your attention to this very interesting journal of GRA: Socioanalysis. It can be purchased on a memory stick at the website of GRA. Furthermore PCCA has decided to sponsor a public lecture that Veronika Grueneisen will give in Melbourne next year: “On destructiveness in us all”.

It is this kind of network and cooperation that we have in mind in order to make the contribution of PCCA relevant for the future.

We have the sad task to inform you of the death of Adib Jarrar, one of our colleagues in two conferences, in 2008 and in 2010, both under the title: “Repeating, Reflecting, Moving On: Germans, Jews, Palestinians & Others Today. The conference in 2010 he had to leave due to his bad physical condition, leaving an open end to our work at the conference. He has been involved in our efforts to develop a network of Palestinian Partners  for PCCA, and we will miss him on this way. We will miss him and the coffee machine that he always brought with him to the work in order to serve coffee together with his generous dedication to the work. We wish to honour him in the obituary by Fakhry Davis  in this NL.


Finishing this letter we receive the sad news that our colleague and friend of many of us, Ross Lazar has passed away on July 23rd. Ross has been a member of our Advisory Board. We have worked together in the conference in Kliczków in 2014: “European Victims and Perpetrators – Now and Then”, and he had been a consultant to one of our meetings of the Board of PCCA. We knew about his severe illness but shared hopes in the last months that we might have a chance to go on working and living together. We are sad and we will miss him who has left us at the age of 72. In our next NL we will honour him with an obituary.

Dorothee C. von Tippelskirch-Eissing, Berlin

July 2017

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