Research seminar in Cultural Anthropology with Diego Zenobi. Rewriting trauma: psychology, political commitment and victimization in contemporary Argentina

  • Date: –12:00
  • Location: Engelska parken Room Eng/3-2028
  • Lecturer: Diego Zenobi, Senior Lecturer at Buenos Aires University and Researcher at CONICET, the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research, Argentina
  • Organiser: Department of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology
  • Contact person: Mats Utas
  • Seminarium

Different kinds of victims around the world appeal to psychological categories to explain their situation. In the case of Latin America, the relationship between victims and psychology has a history related to the post dictatorial past and to the emergence of a professional field that articulates mental health and human rights.

In this paper, Zenobi addresses the political commitment of these experts related to that professional field in the current context of struggles for justice driven by so called "new victims" of gender violence, disasters, and police brutality, for example. By engaging with these struggles, these experts contest certain dominant perspectives in the field of psychology, by reinterpreting and transforming concepts that are central to their professional practice such as trauma or posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). In doing so, they produce connections between victims of different types of violence and contribute to the construction of a political aetiology. 

In his research, Zenobi focuses on the interdependent relationships between the “big struggles” for human rights, against police brutality, gender violence and the like, and the “small struggles" that cut across the field of psychological knowledge in contemporary Argentina and beyond.

Venue: English Park, room Eng / 3-2028
If you want to join by zoom link, contact Mats Utas.

Diego Zenobi holds a PhD in Social Anthropology (University of Buenos Aires) and is a researcher at the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET/ICA FFyL), Argentina. His research interests include crises and political processes the relations between social movements and the state and the political mobilisation of emotions and psychic suffering. He is currently researching contemporary political processes that involve victims of various situations and the experts (psychologists, lawyers, social workers, doctors, etc.) with whom they relate.

Among his publications are Familia política y emociones las víctimas de Cromañón entre el movimiento y el Estado (Antropofagia 2014) and Traces: Mémoires et politiques des crises en Amérique Latine edited with with S. Ullberg and T. C. da Silva (L´Harmattan, 2016).