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Shame, Self-Alienation and the Power of Self-Compassion

October 5, 2023 @ 8:30pm - 10:00pm EDT

The concept of self-alienation is inextricably linked to shame. Working with adult children of traumatizing narcissists, and with others who experience narcissistic abuse, Shaw’s way of working with these clients shifted as he began to study and integrate concepts and techniques from some of the contemporary traumatologists. What he has learned has led Shaw to place problems with self-alienation, a condition largely governed by shame, at the center of the therapeutic endeavor. Shaw will give clinical examples of his work with clients struggling with self-alienation that demonstrate his way of integrating trauma theories and a relational psychoanalytic perspective.

Daniel Shaw, LCSW, is a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City and in Nyack, New York. Originally trained as an actor at Northwestern University and with the renowned teacher Uta Hagen in New York City, Shaw later worked as a missionary for an Indian guru. His eventual recognition of cultic aspects of this organization led him to become an outspoken activist in support of individuals and families traumatically abused in cults. Simultaneous with leaving this group, Shaw began his training in the mental health profession, becoming a faculty member and supervisor at The National Institute for the Psychotherapies in New York. In addition to his numerous published journal articles and book chapters, Shaw’s book, Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation, was published in 2014 for the Relational Perspectives Series by Routledge. The book was a runner-up for the distinguished Gradiva Award. In 2018, the International Cultic Studies Association awarded him the Margaret Thaler Singer Award for advancing the understanding of coercive persuasion and undue influence. Shaw’s second book, Traumatic Narcissism and Recovery: Leaving the Prison of Shame and Fear, was published by Routledge in 2021. Dan speaks on psychoanalytic topics to clinical societies around the world, and also conducts consultation groups for groups of three or four clinicians in person and on Zoom.

Debbie Steinke