“There are so many issues that with three days we are going to fall short,” say Paola Coronel and Adrián Chirre with smiles. They speak of the International Congress of Psychology, the seventh edition of which will take place – in digital format – between next Thursday and Saturday. “Psychology in the horizons of the time: pandemic and virtuality” is the motto of this biannual meeting organized by the Faculty of Psychology of the UNT and which, as is tradition, brings together prestigious specialists from various countries. The date is not capricious, since on Wednesday the Day of the Psychologist is celebrated, established from the first National Meeting of Psychologists (Córdoba, 1974).
There are about 1,000 registered for the Congress, whose program includes six keynote lectures. The opening will be held on Thursday, by Juan Carlos Volnovich (“This pandemic, that world”, with a subsequent discussion to which Marta Gerez Ambertin will join), and the closing one, on Saturday, will be by Alicia Stolkiner (“Practices in mental health, subjectivities and social ties: living in a pandemic ”). The rest will be borne by Markos Zafiropoulos, Sergio Mora Gutiérrez, Thomas Achenbach and Norma Contini. There will also be 40 semi-plenary exhibitions and some 250 works will be presented, with a gallery of posters that will remain open to the public.
Beyond the virtual nature of the Congress, the organizers were finding some loopholes for the presence. For example, on Wednesday at 11 a.m. -the day before the start of activities- there will be an opening ceremony at the Faculty, with the participation of the authorities. And hybrid activities were also programmed, in this case with the possibility of accessing the panels through a Vimeo system mounted in the Sigmund Freud library of the Faculty, with capacity and respecting health protocols. To guarantee the quality of the connections, the Congress centralized all the information on its website, reinforced the technological support and implemented a unique access code for those registered.
“It is a call to all NOA mental health professionals, the opportunity to rethink the place of the psychologist in this pandemic and its impact on the entire life cycle of the human being, from early childhood to old age,” says the doctor. Colonel, who chairs the Organizing Committee and is a teacher and researcher at the UNT. “During this time, other demands appeared in psychological care, new symptoms, which forced to renew the levels of approach in all the fields in which psychology works,” he added. Dr. Chirre, Secretary of Extension of the Faculty, exemplifies it: “they are pathologies of which there is almost no bibliography, such as the phobia of death in childhood and adolescents, or new anxiety disorders. This forces us to rethink future practice; the new clinical pictures need new answers from the professionals ”.
Many of the issues that will be discussed in Congress cross the day-to-day life of psychologists and are debated on an ongoing basis. “Before, patients came to the office; from the pandemic and in virtual form we are the ones who go to his house. This is very valuable, because it allows us to see how and where they live, their context, even the noises that surround them. It’s another kind of listening, ”Coronel emphasizes. Adopting these devices allowed the voice of the other to be represented from different places, he adds, and warns: “with chat and the telephone, very effective jobs are being achieved.”
Fears in pregnancy, couples therapy, the challenges posed by telework, screen education in between, the place of young people and their stigmatization in a pandemic -because they break quarantines or because they are agents of contagion-, the role of the neurosciences, the impact of the coronavirus on social ties … All these questions are part of new lines of research that the pandemic opened and psychologists are finding them daily in consultations. That is why several topics of the Congress will revolve around these topics and will have their own speakers, among them José María Álvarez (“Madness on the horizon of the time”) and Marina Lerner (“The educational psychologist and his intervention in the school guidance teams in times of presence / virtuality ”).
“And at the same time,” Chirre stresses, “we have to talk about the post-pandemic, the need for the other and solidarity.” “Sure,” Coronel complements. If the pandemic has shown us something, it is that, yes or yes, we need that other person to accompany us. We cannot be alone. Hence the slogan of the Congress in this time crossed by a pandemic that is changing us. We are, precisely, on that horizon ”.
Book presentations, a tribute to Dr. Helena Lunazzi and a special place for students -which the organizers define as privileged and specific- also make up the essence of the Congress, whose president is Rosa Castaldo, dean of the Faculty of Psychology.