Play, creativity, and digital culture

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25 June 2022

Time: 10:00 - 11:30

Price: £25

Location: online


This event will be delivered via Zoom.

  1. What is the connection between childhood play and aspects of creativity in later life, and how does the capacity to play enable a greater sense of feeling creative in the world?
  2. What insights can psychoanalysis bring to understanding play and creativity, and how can these be applied at individual, group and institutional levels of the uses of technology in the digital age?
  3. How can psychoanalytic insights bring greater understanding to people’s ordinary and everyday uses of digital technologies, including social media? How is it possible to think of the uses of such technologies in terms of play?

By attending this lecture you can gain:

  1. An understanding of various approaches to theorising play and creativity within the psychoanalytic field.
  2. Further insight into the emergence of child-centred approaches with a special focus on the work of Melanie Klein and Donald Woods Winnicott.
  3. An introduction of how play in infancy builds a sense of creativity and ability to live a creative life, as well as the various impacts that this has upon cultural life.
  4. An understanding of how insights relating to play can be applied more broadly to the use of media particularly in digital and online contexts, including aspects of visual social media.

The session will be delivered as an interactive lecture with plenty of time given for reflection on contemporary culture, personal life and practice. It will begin with a brief introduction to the various contributions to understanding play and creativity that have been made by key psychoanalytic thinkers. Lots of contemporary examples of media use, ranging across the more personal to larger institutional cases will be used to generate relatable discussion.

Finally, the session will provide space for reflection on some of the less formal ways in which encounters with play and its absences present themselves within everyday life, and potentially also come to light in the clinical context.

Dr Karen Cross is a Senior Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Roehampton. She researches on topics ranging across digital culture and social media and is author of the book Toy Story and the Inner World of the Child: Animation, play and creative life (forthcoming in the Psychoanalysis and Popular Culture series at Routledge). She is also a founding scholar of the British Psychoanalytic Council.

Target Audience
This event should be interesting and accessible for anyone interested in the topic, including qualified counsellors and psychotherapists and the general public. This event is open to all.

Please note that by booking a ticket for this event, you are agreeing to our Terms and Conditions for CPD events, so please read through them carefully before making your purchase –

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