SUNDAY JULY 23RD, 2023 (10AM to 4 PM EDT/NYC)
To Register for this seminar, please complete the Registration form
Continuing Education Information: 5 CE’s


Who is good and who is bad? Every communication in the family of the scapegoat is about who is to blame, and the self-righteous scapegoater suffers from the same developmental arrest as the scapegoat. Nobody can be good without the other being bad. Primal level splitting perpetually operates in the mind of the scapegoat and of the scapegoating person.

There is no ego capacity to control, channel, or modify aggression, and the internal threat is perpetual. The threat of internal rage exploding has to be turned inward. Anger is a crime, and there is no developmental capacity for self-assertion. What may seem like guilt is persecutory anxiety of the most profound kind. The external atmosphere of accusation and blame is internalized in the scapegoat, and placating the persecutory scapegoater, who is also filled with a fallacious moral superiority at the moment of accusation, is psychologically a matter of life versus death survival. Annihilation terror haunts the internal world of the scapegoated child victim, who is doomed to turn all dissociated rage against the weak and undeveloped child self within.

The “moral defense” of Ronald Fairbairn may be used by the scapegoated victim to justify the ongoing abuse of the scapegoater. The scapegoat gives justification to the abuser’s baiting accusations. The scapegoat buys into the bullying accusations, while being continually baited to placate the other, or to have a defensive denial that can be mocked by the arrogant and self-righteous scapegoater. Shame and humiliation are the daily faire, and inside the body of the scapegoat is the tension and rage of self-attack, and the wound of perpetual narcissistic injury.  Wilfred Bion’s “attacks on linking” may be taking place in one’s mind, so that any coherent perception of what is going on in the world of external/internal attack (anti-libidinal, anti-dependent self) and devastation and despair (libidinal, dependent self) is chopped up into bits.

Dr. Kavaler-Adler will be lecturing on both the Scapegoat Complex and on the more pervasive psychodynamic of Internal Scapegoating. From an Object Relations perspective, the Scapegoat Complex involves developmental arrest, and the accompanying dissociation and projective identification. Inside the scapegoat is the scapegoater, and inside the scapegoater is the arrested child scapegoat–underneath the self-righteous and contemptuous attitude.

From the Jungian perspective (Sylvia Perera, 1932), the Scapegoat Complex constellates in the unconscious psyche through a “collective unconscious” archetype. The road to recovery can be described in Object Relations developmental terms.

Dr. Kavaler-Adler will speak about her theory of Developmental Mourning (see latest book Developmental Mourning, Erotic Transference, and Object Relations Psychoanalysis, 2022), and the “abandonment depression” theory of James Masterson.

The afternoon portion of the workshop will invite participants into a meditative psychic visualization to experience and share an internal dialogue around the dynamics of scapegoating.


July 23, 2023


Readings in preparation to this seminar (mandatory for those obtaining the CEs) – will be sent to the registered participants in PDF formats.


After completing this seminar, participants should be better able to

  • Describe and analyze the phenomenon of scapegoating.
  • Contrast the outward appearance of the scapegoat versus the outward appearance of the scapegoater.
  • Identify the main defense mechanisms of the scapegoat and scapegoater.
  • Describe the problems in the scapegoat related to the arrest of the ego’s capacity to modify aggression, and to channel it into self-assertion and interpersonal communication.
  • Analyze the difference between authentic existential guilt, related to Melanie Klein’s “depressive position,” and the self-attacking persecutory anxiety of Melanie Klein’s “paranoid-schizoid position.”


Blackman, J. S. (2013). The therapist’s answer book: Solutions to 101 tricky problems in psychotherapy. Routledge.

17 Questions to which the answers are needed during evaluation. (Many of these are in Blackman, 2013).

Reading correlations (Problem # refers to the chapter in the Therapist’s Answer Book)

  • Timing of interventions: Problem 2 (2 pages); Problem 101a (4 pages);
  • The male “Yes, Dear!”: Problem 24 (2 pages);
  • Bullies (who demand medication or ask personal question about you): Problem 21 (5 pages);
  • Highly intelligent people (who doubt your ability to keep up) Problem 17 (4 pages)
  • Wealthy people: Problem 16 (3 pages);
  • Asking too few questions during evaluation (Blackman, 2004);
  • Asking too many questions during treatment (Dorpat, 2000);
  • People with vague chief complaints: Problem 4 (4 pages);
  • Setting up the working alliance and the therapeutic alliance (Greenson, Zetzel, Adatto – see Blackman, 2013), Section B introduction and Problem 3 (3 pages)
  • Planes of intrapsychic conflict: where to intervene; past vs. present unconscious (Sandler & Sandler, 1994): Problem 8 (5 pages);
  • People with high suicide risk (multiple references including Durkheim and Shneidman – in Blackman, 2004, chapter 8); also: Problem 62 (9 pages);
  • Promiscuous people (acter-outers): Problem 30 (4 pages);
  • People who are involved with someone who is driving them crazy (Blackman,2013a): Problem 96 (3 pages);
  • 17 questions to which answers are necessary during evaluation (Blackman, not yet unpublished in English). A developmental view of stages in the supervision of psychoanalytic therapies. (Attached and sent to registrants). [Blackman, J. (2019). A developmental view of stages in the supervision of psychoanalytic therapies. Journal of Shanghai Mental Health Center 2(3), 162-167.]
  • Asking too many questions during psychotherapy (Blackman, 2004, Chapter 6);
  • People who bring their own drinks to the office: Problem 54 (5 pages).

About the book:

This book is designed to help them achieve that by providing practical solutions to problems that arise in psychotherapy, such as the following: Do depressed people need an antidepressant, or psychotherapy alone? How do you handle people who want to be your “friend,” who touch you, who won’t leave your office, or who break boundaries? How do you prevent people from quitting treatment prematurely? Suppose you don’t like the person who consults you? What if people you treat with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) don’t do their homework? When do you explain defense mechanisms, and when do you use supportive approaches? Award-winning professor Jerome S. Blackman answers these and many other tricky problems for psychotherapists. Dr. Blackman punctuates his lively text with tips and snippets of various theories that apply to psychotherapy. He shares his advice and illustrates his successes and failures in diagnosis, treatment, and supervision. He highlights fundamental, fascinating, and perplexing problems he has encountered over decades of practicing and supervising therapy.


Susan Kavaler-Adler, Ph.D., ABPP, D.Litt., NCPsyA is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst, who has been in practice in Manhattan for 45 years. She is a Fellow of the American Board and Academy of Psychoanalysis, and is the Founder and Executive Director of the Object Relations Institute for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis.  She is a Training Analyst, Senior Supervisor and active faculty member at the Object Relations Institute for Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis, a NYS Board of Regents chartered psychoanalytic training institute.

Dr. Kavaler-Adler has an honorary doctorate in literature, and she is a prolific author, with published six books and over 70 articles and book chapters in the field of object relations psychoanalytic theory. Six of her seven published books are related to clinical Object Relations theories. They are: Developmental Mourning, Erotic Transference, and Object Relations Psychoanalysis (IPBooks, 2023); The Klein-Winnicott Dialectic: Transformative New Metapsychology and Interactive Clinical Theory (Karnac, 2014); The Anatomy of Regret: From Death Instinct to Reparation and Symbolization in Vivid Case Studies (Karnac, 2013); Mourning, Spirituality and Psychic Change: A New Object Relations View of Psychoanalysis (Routledge, 2003; Gradiva® Award from NAAP, 2004); The Creative Mystique: From Red Shoes Frenzy to Love and Creativity (Routledge, 1996; ORI Academic Press 2014; Gradiva® Award nomination); The Compulsion to Create: Women Writers and Their Demon Lovers (Routledge, 1993; ORI Academic Press, 2013). Dr. Kavaler-Adler received 16 awards for her psychoanalytic writing. She is also on the editorial board of the International Journal of Controversial Conversations (IJCC). In addition, Dr. Kavaler-Adler conducts ongoing groups in her practice, such as a monthly writing group, a monthly online experiential supervision group, and a monthly “Mourning, Therapy, and Support Group” with guided visualization. More information can be found at


5 CE’s Available!

NY Psychoanalysts: National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis (NAAP) is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an Approved Provider of continuing education for licensed psychoanalysts #P-0019.

NY Social Workers: National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis (NAAP) is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #SW-0168.

To receive CE certificates for the actual hours attended – please request them at the time of registration or any time prior to beginning of the conference. CE certificate fee: $25 (in addition to the registration fees). No fees charged for PD (Professional Development) certificates from ORI.


Early Bird registration (before July 11, 2023)
$60 regular/ $45 grad students & candidates/ $25 undergrad students.
If CEs are requested — please use the “regular” registration (not a “student”) option. There is an additional fee of $25 (can be paid prior or on the day of the conference).

Regular registration (from July 11 – til July 22, 2023 – before 6pm EDT)
$75 regular/ $55 grad students & candidates/ $30 undergrad students.
If CEs are requested — please use the “regular” registration (not a “student”) option. There is an additional fee of $25 (can be paid prior or on the day of the conference).

Registration ‘at the door’ (after 6pm EDT/NYC time on July 23, 2023)
$90 regular/ $65 grad students & candidates/ $35 undergrad students.

Please Note: If CEs are requested — there is an additional fee of $25 (can be paid on the day of the conference or in advance).

SPECIAL SCHOLARSHIPS are available for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as for retired or disabled practitioners, or need-based or/and those who live outside of the USA.

Full refund before the date of the event.
No refund from the day of the event, but full paid tuition will be applied to any further ORI events.