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Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation with Daniel Shaw, LCSW

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Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation with Daniel Shaw, LCSW

Saturday, March 2, 2019 9:00am to 3:00pm
Seattle Pacific University
Demaray Hall
509 West Bertona
Seattle, WA 98119
Sponsored by: 

Division 39 is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists.  Division 39 maintains responsibility for this program and its content. This presentation also meets the requirements of WAC 246-809-620 (definition of recognized categories of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors, marriage and family therapists and social workers). 

Daniel Shaw presents away of understanding the traumatic impact of narcissism as it is engendered developmentally, and as it is enacted relationally. Focusing on the dynamics of narcissism in interpersonal relations, Shaw describes the relational system of what he terms the 'traumatizing narcissist' as a system of subjugation – the objectification of one person in a relationship as the means of enforcing the dominance of the subjectivity of the other.

Shaw illustrates the workings of this relational system of subjugation in a variety of clinical vignettes, theorizing traumatic narcissism as an intergenerationally transmitted relational/developmental trauma; and exploring the clinician's experience working with the adult children of traumatizing narcissists.

Bringing together theories of trauma and attachment, intersubjectivity and complementarity, and the rich clinical sensibility of the Relational Psychoanalysis tradition, Shaw demonstrates how narcissism can best be understood not merely as character, but as the result of the specific trauma of subjugation, in which one person is required to become the object for a significant other who demands hegemonic subjectivity.

Daniel Shaw, LCSW, is a psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City and in Nyack, New York; and Faculty and Supervisor at The National Institute for the Psychotherapies in New York. His papers have appeared in Psychoanalytic Inquiry, Contemporary Psychoanalysis, and Psychoanalytic Dialogues, and most recently, his book,Traumatic Narcissism: Relational Systems of Subjugation, was published by Routledge for the Relational Perspectives Series.  Click here to listen to an interview with Daniel Shaw on his book. There will be copies of this book for sale at the conference.  

Saturday's Schedule: 

          9 - 10:30 am  Overview of the relational system of the traumatizing narcissist

                10:30 - 10:45 break

          10:45 - 12:00 - clinical material interspersed with theoretical 

               12:00 - 1:00 pm lunch

         1:00 - 3 pm - Case of a severely dissociated patient with complex PTSD coming from a significant narcissistic 

                 abuse/relational trauma background 

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will be able to demonstrate the ability to identify and define the dynamics of the traumatizing narcissist's       relational system.
  • Participants will be able to apply a contemporary relational psychoanalytic approach to the treatment of the symptoms typical of the patient who has been subjugated by a traumatizing narcissist.
  • Participants will have the ability to define subjugation trauma and its clinical implications.

Recommended Readings

  • Ghent, Emmanuel  (1990)  Masochism, Submission, Surrender1—Masochism as a Perversion of Surrender.   Contemp. Psychoanal., 26:108-136.
  • Benjamin, J.  (2004). Beyond Doer and Done to: An Intersubjective View of Thirdness. Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 73:5-46.
  • Shaw, D.  (2010) Enter Ghosts: The Loss of Intersubjectivity in Clinical Work With Adult Children of Pathological Narcissists. Psychoanalytic Dialogues,:46–59, 2010.


The conference is appropriate for professionals interested in the practice of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic psychotherapy. The instructional level of this conference is intermediate.

Directions: Click here for an SPU campus map.  Free parking is in the lot numbered #45 and the event is in the building numbered #8, Demaray Hall. 

Refund Policy: Refunds less a $15 handling fee will be given up until one week before the conference. 

This program, when attended in its entirety, is available for 4.75 continuing education credits.  Division 39 is committed to accessibility and non-discrimination in its continuing education activities.  Division 39 is also committed to conducting all activities in conformity with the American Psychological Association's Ethical Principles for Psychologists.  Participants are asked to be aware of the need for privacy and confidentiality throughout the program.  If program content becomes stressful, participants are encouraged to process these feelings during discussion periods. If participants have special needs, we will attempt to accommodate them. Please address questions, concerns and any complaints to Erin Carruth 206-267-3090.  There is no commercial support for this program nor are there any relationships between the CE Sponsor, presenting organization, presenter, program content, research, grants or other funding that could reasonably be construed as conflicts of interest.  Participants will be informed of the utility/validity of the content/approach discussed (including the basis for the statements about validity/utility), as well as the limitations of the approach and most common (and severe) risks, if any, associated with the program's content.  


Contact Person: 
Erin Carruth
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