The New School for Social Research Office of the Dean presents an upcoming lecture by the the 2011-12 Theodor Heuss Visiting Professor in Psychology, Dr. Tilmann Habermas from University of Frankfurt a.M.
Dr. Habermas’ lecture is titled “The Development of the Life Story: Creating continuity across Change.” Professor William Hirst, Professor of Psychology, The New School for Social Research will offer his comments.
Wednesday February 8, 2012
2:00-3:30p.m., with a reception to follow
Wolff Conference Room 1103
6 East 16th Street, 11th Floor, New York City
Reservations are required for this event. Click here to request one.
Here is some information about the talk from a circulated flyer:
The life story is arguably a modern communicative-cognitive format for understanding and presenting individuals’ identities. From a psychological perspective, Professor Habermas will make four claims: 1) The diachronic format of the life story is better suited than categorical formats to represent mixed social, ethnic, or racial identities; 2) identity is more than an ephemeral, ever-shifting, situation-specific construction, but has a relatively stable core narrative that creates continuity across personal change; 3) the ability to do so develops only in adolescence, and requires constructing four kinds of global coherence; 4) reconstructing the foundations of their life, narrators have to use parental narratives and attributions, which they can rely on or challenge. Illustrations will be drawn from the public realm by looking at the use of life stories in politics (in the 2008 presidential elections), which will be supplemented by examples and quantitative evidence from an ongoing longitudinal developmental psychological study of brief life narratives from a lifespan sample.
Tilmann Habermas received his doctoral degree in 1988 and Habilitation in 1995 in Psychology from the University of Heidelberg. He worked at the Psychosomatic Clinic Heidelberg 1984-86, taught Medical Psychology at the Freie Universit√§t Berlin and Charit√© Berlin from 1987-2001, and teaches since 2002 Psychoanalysis and Clinical Psychology at the Psychology Department of the Goethe University Frankfurt a.M.. Professor Habermas has published numerous articles in psychological and psychoanalytic journals, and his books include: Hei√ühunger: Historische Bedingungen der Bulimia nervosa [Ravenous appetite: Historical conditions of bulimia nervosa], Fischer 1990; Zur Geschichte der Magersucht [On the history of anorexia nervosa], Fischer 1994; Geliebte Objekte [Beloved objects], Suhrkamp 1996; editor of The development of autobiographical reasoning in adolescence and beyond, Wiley, 2011. His present research areas are a) the development of the life story as reflected in life narratives and autobiographical reasoning, and b) relations between emotion and narrative in terms of expressing, coping with, and inducing emotions.