The APT-Birmingham Public Lecture

Saturday 9th November 2019


Professor Brett Kahr

Although Sigmund Freud wrote extensively about death wishes in the family, he devoted far more attention to the child’s desire to kill the parent of the same sex as well as any unwanted siblings, rather than upon the parent’s desire to murder the child. Donald Winnicott elaborated upon parental death wishes, especially in his classic essay “Hate in the Counter-Transference”, albeit rather briskly. Building upon these foundational contributions, I will draw upon his work with psychotic and forensic patients and, also, with normal-neurotic individuals, to explore the many ways in which maternal and paternal death wishes and death threats towards babies and children become internalised over time and ultimately contribute to the development of severe psychopathology. I will explore the concept of the “infanticidal attachment”, examining how early death threats can damage the very foundations of the ego structure, resulting in psychosis, suicidality, criminality, severe eating problems, life-threatening addictions, and a host of other extreme psychological states. Drawing upon extensive case material, I will consider how intensive, long-term psychoanalytically orientated treatment can contribute to the neutralisation of such toxic “infanticidal introjects”.

Professor Brett Kahr has worked in the mental health profession for over forty years. He is Senior Fellow at the Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology in London and, also, Senior Clinical Research Fellow in Psychotherapy and Mental Health at the Centre for Child Mental Health. A Consultant Psychotherapist at The Balint Consultancy and a Consultant in Psychology to The Bowlby Centre, he is also a Trustee of the Freud Museum London and of Freud Museum Publications.

Kahr is the author or editor of twelve books, including D.W. Winnicott: A Biographical Portrait, which won the Gradiva Award for Biography, as well as the best-selling Sex and the Psyche, a study of the traumatic origins of sexual fantasies. His most recent book is entitled How to Flourish as a Psychotherapist. He is also Series Editor of over fifty-five further titles on forensic psychotherapy; the history of psychoanalysis; and couple and family psychoanalysis. His forthcoming book is entitled “Bombs in the Consulting Room: Surviving Psychological Shrapnel”.

Formerly Resident Psychotherapist on B.B.C. Radio 2, Kahr maintains a long-standing interest in the dissemination of psychological knowledge to the general public.

He currently serves as Trustee of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy and, also, as Chair of the Scholars Committee of the British Psychoanalytic Council.

Time and Place

This event will be held between 10.15am and 2.45pm at Staff House, University of Birmingham.


Please email your application form and make payment by BACS or send your cheque with your application form by post.

APPLICATION DETAILS FOR NOVEMBER 2019: This event will be held between 10.15am and 2.45pm at Staff House, University of Birmingham.The cost for the lecture (incl. lunch) is £95.00 (Student rate £70). Bookings must be made by 31st October 2019.

Please make BACS payments as follows:
Bank: Barclays, Sort Code: 20-08-44, Account No: 03737950
Account Name: The Training in Jungian Analytical Psychotherapy
(Please use your name as a reference)

Alternatively please send cheque made payable to ‘The Training in Jungian Analytical Psychotherapy’ and return with the completed form to:
Sue Harford, Administrator to the Training Committee, Unit 1A, West Stockwith Park, Stockwith Road, Misterton, Nottinghamshire. DN10 4ES.

For further details and queries contact:

Sue Harford, Administrator to the Training Committee,
telephone: 07789 545908, email:

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The APT-Birmingham
Public Lectures

For enquiries contact Sue Harford,
Administrator to the Training Committee
Unit 1A, West Stockwith Park,
Stockwith Road, Misterton,
Nottinghamshire DN10 4ES.

Telephone: 07789 545908

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