“It avails not, time nor place–distance avails not, / I am with you, you men and women of a generation, or ever so many / generations hence,” Walt Whitman wrote in his legendary book, “Leaves of Grass.” Today we’re talking about distance and intimacy, psychoanalysis and poetry with the genius scholar, writer, and editor Hannah Zeavin, whose work centers on the history of human sciences (psychoanalysis, psychology, and psychiatry), the history of technology, feminist STS, and media theory.
While history of poetry is harder to pin down, there is a specific history of psychoanalysis, and it draws heavily on the phenomenon of artistic creativity. That overlap will always be partly in play here on the Ode & Psyche podcast, but also today I wanted to get more specific about it, and to have Hannah Zeaivin to talk about her incredible work in these historical inquiries, particularly her new book Distance Cure: A History of Teletherapy. I feel it’s so important for listeners join in the conversation around mental health care and to address antiquated ideas of psychoanalysis, and to see the massive potentiality of this work in the psychoanalytic, psychodynamic relationship, and how as a poet. Enjoy!
Hannah Zeavin is an Assistant Professor at Indiana University in the Luddy School of Informatics. Additionally, she is a visiting fellow at the Columbia University Center for the Study of Social Difference.
Zeavin’s first book, The Distance Cure: A History of Teletherapy is now out from MIT Press, with a Foreword by John Durham Peters. She is at work on her second book, Mother’s Little Helpers: Technology in the American Family (MIT Press, under contract). Other academic work has appeared in or is forthcoming from differences: A Journal of Feminist Studies, Technology and Culture, American Imago, Media, Culture, & Society, and elsewhere.
In 2021, Zeavin co-founded The Psychosocial Foundation and is the Founding Editor of Parapraxis, a new magazine for psychoanalysis. She also serves as an Editorial Associate for The Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association and an Associate Editor for Psychoanalysis & History.