On this episode of Rendering Unconscious, host Dr. Vanessa Sinclair speaks with Dr. Meredith Friedson about her new book Subjective Darkness: Depression as a Loss of Connection, Narrative, Meaning, and the Capacity for Self-Representation, as well as about the current state of the mental health system, including the treatment of depression and psychosis.
Dr. Meredith Friedson is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the state of New York (and soon to be licensed in New Jersey). She is author of the book Subjective Darkness: Depression as a Loss of Connection, Narrative, Meaning, and the Capacity for Self-Representation (featured in this podcast) as well as the articles Subjective Darkness: Depression as a Disintegration of Meaning in the Core Narrative and Psychotherapy and the Fundamentalist Client: The Aims and Challenges of Treating Jehovah’s Witnesses. Her areas of research include depression, trauma of all forms, the clinical treatment of schizophrenia and other forms of psychosis, loss, subjectivity, alienation, and social justice issues including the effects of police stops on Black and Latino individuals. Meredith is drawn to clinical work with some of the most vulnerable populations and believes that her position as Psychologist is a privilege that carries with it the responsibility to treat each individual she works with humanely, with respect, dignity, and compassion. Listening to the space between what can be said and fostering a safe place in which creativity and play can develop are vital to her approach. Most importantly, she believes that a tremendous amount of psychological suffering comes from feeling unrecognized, misunderstood, denied, rejected, or unseen. She therefore strives to be present with each individual and engage with them on their terms, without imposing her own views, judgments, or agenda. Meredith is active in the academic community and has a private practice in Manhattan. She hopes one day to teach and to create a new treatment setting for working with schizophrenic adults who have been institutionalised for many years that values their autonomy, agency, creativity, and basic human dignity. Her professional website is meredithfriedsonphd.com and she recently started a blog there.
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The track playing at the end of the episode is “Dark Moon” by Vanessa Sinclair & Carl Abrahamsson from their album CUT TO FIT THE MOUTH available on cassette in the US from arcanamachine.com and in the EU from trapart.net as well as digitally via highbrow-lowlife.com
Artwork by Vanessa Sinclair. A book of her cut-up poetry SWITCHING MIRRORS is available through trapart.net and CHAOS OF THE THIRD MIND with artist Katelan Foisy is upcoming from Fulgur.