Tue, Apr 2, 2019 to Tue, May 7, 2019
7:30 - 9:00 pm

St. Clement's Episcopal Church

2837 Claremont Boulevard
Berkeley, CA 94705
Robert Bartner, Ph.D.
CE Credits: 
Participant Limit: 

$315 General Public
$225 Full Members
$198 CMH Members
$180 Associate Members
$135 Student Members
$135 Scholarship (prior approval required to register at this fee)

Tuition listed above is for early registration ($40 discount off full fee, $15 discount for NCSPP Student Members). For registrations received after the deadline, full tuition will be applied to all registrations.

Tuition does not include the cost of readers.

Early Registration Deadline: 
March 19, 2019
All major credit cards, as well as checking account debit payments, are accepted.


Opening to and Healing Desire

Course Overview: 

There is nothing in psychoanalytic theory as central as the Oedipal Complex. This is the case not only because Freud used the classical myth of Oedipus to describe what he discovered to be the central developmental conflict of his patients, but also because as psychoanalytic theory has evolved, the myth of Oedipus has come to be seen as having an even more important role: that of elucidating the central organizing principle of the mind itself. Psychoanalysis began as a technique for freeing up blockages in desire that Freud thought created neurosis. In this class, we will take a fresh look at Oedipal dynamics in an effort to understand how the inhibition or liberation of desire works to either free the mind and its development, or constrict it. Through this study, I hope students will gain an understanding as to why the Oedipal Complex remains of central value both theoretically and clinically.

Course Objectives: 

At the conclusion of this course participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the central themes of the oedipal complex as envisioned by Freud.
  2. Discuss the differences between the positive and negative oedipal and describe the importance developmentally between each.
  3. Describe a least three aspects of the oedipal myth which describe the central conflicts which Freud and others identified as core challenges which must be worked through developmentally.
  4. Explain several important aspects of the oedipal myth which express the need to withhold the truth from oneself.
  5. Discuss the differences between the female experience as described by the myth of Persephone with the male experience of the oedipal. They will also be able to understand the central feminine conflicts which girls struggle with in their development  through the oedipal conflict.  
  6. Clinically assess various levels of desire which are either repressed, or supported and expanded through the experience of oedipal development .
Empirical Reference: 

Bazan, A, K. V. Draege, L. D. Kock, et al. (2013). Empirical evidence for Freud's theory of primary process mentation in acute psychosis. Psychoanalytic Psychology, 30(1), 57–74.

Leichsenring, F., & Rabung, S. (2011). Long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy in complex mental disorders: update of a meta-analysis. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 199, 15-22.

Maat, S. de, F. deJonghe, R. deKraker, et al. (2013). The current state of the empirical evidence for psychoanalysis: A meta-analytic approach. Harvard Review of Psychiatry, 21(3),  107–137.


Robert Bartner, Ph.D., MFT, is a faculty member and personal and supervising psychoanalyst at PINC and adjunct faculty member at SFCP. Dr. Bartner has a private practice in Oakland where he practices psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psycho­therapy with individuals and couples. He teaches widely, provides clinical consultation, and leads private study groups. 

Target Audience & Level: 

This intermediate class is for clinicians with some basic understanding of and appreciation for psychoanalytic theory. It will focus on theoretical models as well as clinical implications. Priority will be given to students who completed the first segment of the course in Fall.

Cancellation & Refund Policies: 

Enrollees who cancel at least SEVEN DAYS prior to the event date will receive a refund minus a $35 administrative charge. No refunds will be allowed after this time.  Transfer of registrations are not allowed.

Contact Information: 

For program related questions contact Cameron Murphey at murpcam@gmail.com or 425-652-2673.

For questions related to enrollment, locations, CE credit, special needs, course availability and other administrative issues contact Michele McGuinness by email or 415-496-9949.

Education Committee

The Education Committee is responsible for the development of a variety of courses and workshops given throughout the year in San Francisco and the East Bay.

Asya Grigorieva, Ph.D., Chair
Clara Brandt, Psy.D.
June Lin-Arlow
Cameron Murphey, MFTi
Jonathan Willett, MA
Anna Zozulinsky, Ph.D.