Catalysis: How to Slow Down or Abort Humankind’s Leap to War

Instructor: Alice Maher, M.D.
Date: Thursday, May 31st, 2018; 2:35 pm – 3:25 pm
Location: In-person – at 115 East 9th Street, 12P, NY, NY 11366, OR Virtual participation – by Internet audio-video or phone/ audio
Continuing Education Information: 1 CE


There is a major paradigm shift in human understanding and human discourse. My goal is to intrigue you, coax you to think, and eventually behave in new ways, while ultimately convince you to become a part of a movement that will lead to a new way of communicating across human divides and find creative solutions to intractable problems.


At the end of this educational activity, its participants will be able to: 1) analyze why existing conflict resolution and empathy models are ineffective in resolving conflicts of identity; 2) discuss “transformational moments” described in history and literature that can be utilized as a conflict resolution methodology.


  • Einstein, A., & Freud, S. (1933). Why war? Geneva Switzerland: League of Nations.
  • Gat, A. (2017). The causes of war and the spread of peace. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.  
  • Kuhn, T. (1969). The structure of scientific revolutions. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
  • Maher, A. (1993). Creativity: A work in progress. Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 62(2), 239-262.
  • Maher, A. (2015).  Why Do We Have War and What Can We Do About It (Film). 
  •             Retrieved from:
  • Maher, A. (2018). Catalysis: A recipe to slow down or abort humankind’s leap to war. New York, NY: International Psychoanalytic Books.  
  • Pinker, S. (2011). The better angels of our nature: Why violence has declined. New York, NY: Viking.
  • Volkan, V. (1994). The need to have enemies and allies. New York, NY: Jason Aronson.
  • Volkan, V. (2004). Blind trust: Large groups and their leaders in times of crisis and terror. Charlottesville, VA: Pitchstone Publishing.
  • Volkan, V. (2013). Enemies on the couch: A psychopolitical journey through war and peace. Durham, NC: Pitchstone Publishing.


Alice Maher, M.D., is a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst in private practice in NYC, founded Changing Our Consciousness, which is dedicated to communication across psychological divides. Her documentary, The Hot Stove Project, addresses political and ethnic conflict from the perspective of neuroscience and psychoanalysis.