Conference: Infancy and the self/other differentiation. Perspectives from phenomenology and psychoanalysis


Thursday, October 30th, 2014

09:15-09:30 Introduction
09:30-10:45 Philippe Rochat (Emory University):
                  "Developing levels of self-other differentiation"
10:45-12:00 Vasudevi Reddy (University of Portsmouth): 
                  "Surprise: a key to self-other differentiation"
12:00-13:00 Lunch Break
13:00-14:15 Johannes Lehtonen (University of Eastern Finland):
                  "Before self/other differentiation - the matrix between the newborn and the
14:15-14.45 Coffee Break
14:45-16:00 Joona Taipale (University of Copenhagen):
                  "Interoception and the functional other"
16:00-17:15 Aikaterini Fotopoulou (University College London):
                   "The touched self: Affective touch and bodily dimensions of selfhood"

Friday, October 31st, 2014

09:30-10:45 Jagna Brudzińska (University of Cologne):
                  "Co-performative dynamics of individuation"
10:45-12:00 Gunnar Karlsson (University of Stockholm):
                  "Some reflections on the relationship between the self and the other in                    psychoanalysis"
12:00-13:00 Lunch Break
13:00-14:15 Dan Zahavi (University of Copenhagen):
                  "Anonymity and we-space"
14:15-14.45 Coffee Break
14:45-16:00 Joel Krueger (University of Exeter):
                  "Affect, entrainment, and the self-other relation"
16:00-17:15 Bent Rosenbaum (University of Copenhagen):
                  "Body, we-ness and discourse as self-other expressions of development"


The conference is free and open to all, but prior registration is required. To register, send an email to (please mark the subject field with “Registration”).


Recent decades have marked a major paradigm shift in research on early self/other differentiation. The popular view today is that infants are equipped with a sense of differentiation from birth, and this view has often been interpreted as replacing the classical psychoanalytic account in which the infant/caretaker relation was rather discussed in terms of symbiosis and undifferentiation. However, it is unclear as to whether the new paradigm ought to be interpreted as substituting or complementing the old one. 

The objective of this conference is to combine insights and resources from phenomenology, psychology, and psychoanalysis in order to investigate whether there could be room for both views, thus aiming at a more comprehensive account of infantile experience.

Click here to download the conference poster