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Berkeley Psychoanalytic Society
100 Bay Place
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Oakland, CA 64610


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True Love As Love of Truth

April 20 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

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Melanie Klein’s entire endeavor might be described as a rich and unwavering effort to allow love to come to the fore, or in Klein’s words, to extricate “love [from being] buried under hate” (Klein, 1934). From the very beginning of life until it’s end, we long for the mythical union with the other, which is based on a combination of moments of near-perfect harmony between mother and infant in early infancy and unconscious phantasies concerning an ideal connection and complete satisfaction (Klein, 1963). Simultaneously, there lies a whole set of aggression toward, anxieties of and defenses against the bad, frustrating object. The struggle and balance between these two attitudes are at the roots of true love. I shall address a few main factors that stand in the way of true love, and the psychological conditions which might enable love to last: The love for the ‘otherness’ of the other; facing the ethical challenge embedded in sexual lust; and above all and most prominent – the love of truth. A clinical example will illustrate the main ideas presented and the way they are explored in the analyst’s mind through projective identification and worked through within the analytic encounter.


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Merav Roth, Ph.D

Prof. Merav Roth (PhD) is a clinical psychologist, a training psychoanalyst and an interdisciplinary researcher of psychoanalysis and literature. - A teaching professor and the current founder and future chair of a culture-sensitive academic and clinical center in the University of Haifa. - The former head of the “Psychoanalytic psychotherapy program”; former founder and chair of Melanie Klein’s advanced studies; and former chair of the Interdisciplinary psychoanalytic Doctoral unit – all in the School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University. - The scientific editor of various translated books of Klein and her successors into Hebrew: “Melanie Klein – Essential papers II” with J. Durban (Bookworm publishing house, 2013); Klein’s “Psychoanalysis of children” (Bookworm publishing house, 2022); Brenman Pick’s “Authenticity in the Psychoanalytic Encounter” (Carmel, 2021). - Roth wrote many psychoanalytic papers and chapters, including on the life and death instincts, on the interdisciplinary interface of psychoanalysis and literature and on trauma and bereavement. - Her first book in Hebrew (Carmel, 2017) was translated into English, titled “A psychoanalytic perspective on reading literature – Reading the reader” (Routledge, 2020). - Her (Hebrew) book “True love as the love of truth” was recently published (Alma publishing house, 2024).

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