11-07&08-12 Mary Watkins

Presentation Archives

Academic Year 2012-2013


Presenter: Mary Watkins, Ph.D., Depth Psychology Program at Pacifica Graduate Institute

Bio:  Mary Watkins, Ph.D., is a core faculty member in the M.A./Ph.D. Depth PsychologyProgram at Pacifica Graduate Institute, Coordinator of its community and ecological fieldworkand research, and Co-Chair of its specialization in community psychology, liberation psychology,and ecopsychology. She is the co-author of Toward Psychologies of Liberation and TalkingWith Young Children About Adoption, author of Waking Dreams and Invisible Guests: TheDevelopment of Imaginal Dialogues, and a co-editor of Psychology and the Promotion of Peace.She works at the interfaces between Euro-American depth psychologies and psychologies ofliberation from Latin America, Africa and Asia. She has worked as a clinical psychologist withadults, children, and families, and has also worked with small and large groups around issuesof immigration, peace, alternatives to violence, envisioning the future, diversity, vocation, andsocial justice. She was a member of a participatory research team at PUEBLO, a Latino rightsgrassroots organization. Their work collecting testimonios from immigrants without documentsin Santa Barbara has resulted in a book In the Shadows of Paradise: Testimonies from theUndocumented Immigrant Community in Santa Barbara. She is a Peacebuilding Associate ofthe Karuna Center for Peacebuilding, and a member of the national Steering Committee forPsychologists for Social Responsibility (PsySR). She is currently finishing a book with philosopherEdward Casey, Up Against the Wall: Re-Imagining the U.S.-Mexico Border, which she willdiscuss in depth in the symposium session.


Public Talk Date: Wednesday, November 7th, 2012, 4:30 - 6:00 PM, Rockwell Lecture Hall 1, Duquesne University.

Abstract: As neoliberal globalization destructively affects the lives of individuals andcommunities, other-than-human animals, and ecosystems, what kinds of psychology need to bedeveloped to address the collective traumas of our day? Beginning with her own life trajectoryfrom studying existential phenomenological psychology at Duquesne in 1974-1975 to her co-creating a doctoral program in community psychology, liberation psychology, and ecopsychologyat Pacifica Graduate Institute, Watkins will underscore the importance of participatory actionresearch and its dialogical ethics, liberatory pedagogy, community and ecopsychologicalfieldwork, and psychosocial accompaniment as ways to redress the underlying coloniality of muchof Euro-American psychology, while working toward teloi of justice, dynamic peacebuilding, andecological sustainability. She will address the impact of these ideas on diagnosis and treatment,as well as the clinician's potential contribution beyond individual treatment to community well-being and public policy.


Symposium Date: Thursday, November 8th, 2012, 12.00-2.00pm, Berger Gallery, College Hall # 207, Duquesne University

Title:  Up Against the Wall: Re-Imagining the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands

Abstract: Over the last decade Mary Watkins has literally encountered the U.S. wall at the U.S.-Mexicoborder at La Frontera, and, metaphorically encountered it in her home community of SantaBarbara, in U.S. immigration history, and in the U.S.' history of racism against Mexicanimmigrants. As a liberation psychologist, she has used a number of approaches to this work:fieldwork immersion, participatory action research, psychosocial accompaniment, participatory
visioning around walls in our communities, theoretical research, historical research, co-creatingsites of reconciliation, and community education. Beginning with her initial encounter with the wallitself at Friendship Park, she will share via a Freirean framework some of the art on the Mexicanside as a way into some of the multifaceted approaches that are necessary to create and embodya human rights based approach to forced migration.


All interested faculty, graduate students, and other parties are invited.  Refreshments will be served.