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DPS Lecture: The Erotic Self: Bringing Self-Psychology and Freud Together, featuring John Riker, PhD

Friday, April 03, 2020, 7:00 PM
Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church
1980 Dahlia St
Denver, CO  80220

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The Denver Psychoanalytic Society 2019-2020 Lecture Series

The Erotic Self: Bringing Self-Psychology and Freud Together, featuring John Riker, Ph.D.

Friday, April 3, 2020 at 7:00 PM

Where: Montview Blvd. Presbyterian Church 1980 Dahlia St., Denver, CO


Dr. Riker will show why the energy that vitalizes unconscious self structure needs to be thought of as eros and how the self speaks through what he terms "erotic eruptions."  Dr. Riker will describe psychological dynamics in which there are strong tensions between the ego, the body, ingested social codes, and the self, and describe how one can tell what is pressuring one, so that they might determine the importance of those motivations.  Along the way, Dr. Riker will weave together Plato, Freud, and Kohut into a novel picture of the human soul.


  1. The participants will be able to understand what the singular self in each human being is and how it manifests itself.
  2. The participants will be able to understand the nature of eros and the erotic in such a way that it is not reduced to the sexual, as it tends to be in contemporary culture.
  3. The participants will be able to identify which sector of the psyche is pressuring them, so as to better evaluate the importance of their motivations.


For the past three decades, John Riker has been devoted to exploring the relation of psychoanalysis, especially Kohutian self psychology, to problems in ethics and philosophical anthropology.  He has written four books intersecting psychoanalysis and ethics (most recently, Exploring the Life of the Soul), and published numerous articles and spoken in many conferences on this material, including conferences in England, Belgium, Turkey, Austria, and Israel.  John has been a professor of philosophy at Colorado College for over half a century and been named Professor of the Year a record four times, and advisor of the year three times.  He was the initial recipient of the award Colorado College established to recognize someone who most promotes diversity and inclusion on campus.  

Attendees will receive 1.75 CME credit. 

This event is free to attend or there is a small fee for CME credit.  In order to receive a CME certificate, the attendee must: pre-register online, pay in full, attend the entire session and complete an evaluation within 14 days after the program.