Panel Presentation (continued):
Antisemitism as Jew-Hatred: A Psychohistorical Enigma – Part 2
• Jerome S. Blackman: Differential Diagnosis of Antisemitism, Based on Psychoanalytic Views of Prejudice (60 min)

Abstract: Freud addressed the problem of prejudice from a psychoanalytic standpoint many times in his career. Perhaps his most salient work is “group psychology and the analysis of the ego” (1920). Since then, there has been considerable literature concerning prejudicial ideas based on individual, group, and mass dynamics, including transgenerational transmission of trauma (e.g., Volkan). Geographical, political, historical, and economic factors can weigh into prejudicial ideas, however, this discussion will be limited to dynamic causes, as a contribution to how unconscious functioning can lead to the irrational states of mind commonly known as prejudice.

In this extemporaneous presentation, Dr. Blackman will review 21 different causes of prejudice based on individual dynamics. He will then review six causes based on group dynamics, another six based on massive group dynamics, and three curious etiologies that emanate from psychopathic propensities. In particular, he will look at how many of these concepts contribute to antisemitism. In the United States, and around the world, antisemitism has been confounded with anti-Zionism, so that the distinction between these two ideas has fallen by the wayside. Propaganda and political manipulations have contributed to the anti-Semitic beliefs around the world, but Dr. Blackman will contend that these are necessary but not sufficient conditions to produce the vile type of anti-Semitism that is now rampant. We must look at the unconscious dynamics, determine which of these are applicable in any given case, and thereby be able better to combat these powerful irrational forces.

Bio: Jerome S. Blackman, M.D., FIPA, is professor of clinical psychiatry at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk; Training and Supervising Analyst with the Contemporary Freudian Society in Washington DC; Faculty member at the Object Relations Institute in New York, and invited lecturer at Icahn Mt Sinai School of Medicine, New York. He is past Distinguished Professor of Mental Health (2018 – 21) through Harvard – Shanxi Medical University in Taiyuan, China, twice past President of the Virginia Psychoanalytic society, and past President of the American College of psychoanalysts. His honors include the Edith Sabin MD award from the American Psychoanalytic Association. He is the author of five books, including 101 defenses: How the mind shield itself (his first) and Developmental evaluation of children and adolescents: A psychodynamic guide (co-author, 2023).