Psychoanalysis on the Edge / Of Nervous Breakdown

deadline for submissions: 
February 22, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
ASAP/13 Conference

ASAP/13 Call for Papers


Psychoanalysis on the Edge / Of Nervous Breakdown

What kind of edgework (psychic, somatic, pleasurable, unpleasurable) does psychoanalysis entail, and how can it be leveraged to think about breakdown in its myriad saturating forms today? This panel invites papers focused on the unique edgework that psychoanalysis enables and prompts consideration of the edging that occurs between psychoanalysis and related theoretical, political, and aesthetic disciplines: between, for example, Lacanian and object-relations psychoanalysis; the metapsychology of the drives and political theory; sublimation and aesthetics. The edges shaped by psychoanalysis are numerous. Thus, we encourage work that looks to the past and future of psychoanalysis to imagine new horizons, where the boundary between what psychoanalysis was and can be is still undecided. For instance, what might psychoanalysis look like when edged by Black studies, queer and trans theory, or ecocriticism? How might psychoanalytic protocols need to be revised? Finally, what conceptual force might psychoanalysis offer to theories and histories concerned with breakdown at multiple scales—psychic, infrastructural, environmental?

Not coincidently, we take inspiration for our title from Pedro Almodóvar’s film, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (1988) and welcome papers working at the edges of psychoanalysis and aesthetics (including literary, cinema, and sound studies, and the plastic arts) and psychoanalytic genres, including comedy.

We encourage papers to reflect on psychoanalytic edgework both as a supplement to other theoretical traditions, including Marxism and feminism, and as a way of cutting against these traditions and carving out new conceptual possibilities. Please send expressions of interest, with an abstract of up to 300 words and a brief bio, to Lakshmi Padmanabhan ( and Steven Swarbrick ( by February 22nd.