Henry SeidenbergPhoto: The prize is named in honor of Henry Seidenberg, MD, a former Institute dean and staunch supporter of psychoanalytic scholarship

In October, Institute President Erika Schmidt announced that in collaboration with Dentons Law Firm, we are  sponsoring the Seidenberg Paper Prize for the two best papers on Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Problems of Incarceration.
The first place award is $15,000 and the second place award is $5,000. This one-time paper prize is made possible through a very generous contribution from Dentons Law Firm in honor of Institute Board member Harold Hirshman's pro bono work on the class-action suit known as Rasho.
The settlement in the Rasho case provides for personnel and facilities for mental health services for prisoners who are mentally ill. (More about the case and Harold Hirshman). 
Details below, or you can download the announcement and call for papers for further details.


Call for Papers:

Seidenberg Prize For Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Problems of Incarceration

America has the highest rate of incarceration in the developed world. Its prisons are overcrowded and almost every state has a disproportionate number of African-American inmates. Perhaps 25% of inmates suffer from mental illness. 
In this atmosphere, prisoners live in fear of each other and of the guards. Guards work in fear of the prisoners. The atmosphere of fear can be considered a mental health problem in and of itself that affects both guards and prisoners. It then further contributes to the multiple challenges confronting prisoners, including educational levels, employment opportunities, discrimination and family support. As a society, we have made a determination to incarcerate a vast number of people. The Supreme Court has decided those people are entitled to basic medical and mental health care. Yet we as a society have not found a way to ensure that prisoners receive adequate mental health care.
What can psychoanalytic thought and psychology contribute toward an understanding of the social issue of incarceration?  What are the dynamics of fear within prisons and how can the atmosphere of fear be alleviated?  How can a more tolerable environment be created for prisoners and for guards?  How can the problems of mentally ill prisoners be addressed?  
Papers should contribute to an understanding of these problems and offer feasible suggestions for intervention (apart from releasing significant numbers of prisoners or vastly increasing expenditures on mental health for guards and prisoners). 
The Seidenberg Prize, named in honor of Henry Seidenberg, MD, recognizes the best paper with a psychoanalytic perspective on problems within prisons that affect the mental health of prisoners and of guards.
  • Two prizes will be awarded. The first place winner will receive $15,000. The second place winner will receive $5,000.
  • Prizes will be awarded at the June 2018 meeting of the American Psychoanalytic Association.
  • The winning papers can be submitted for presentation at the American Psychoanalytic Association national meeting, the International Psychoanalytical Association or other appropriate forum. 
  • The papers can be reviewed for publication in the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. 
  • A stipend of $1,500 will be available for expenses if the paper is accepted for presentation.
  • The sponsors of this prize are the Dentons Law Firm and the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis.
  • This call for papers is open to anyone with an interest in applications of psychoanalytic principles to mental health issues in prisons. The paper can be no longer than 30 pages.
  • Submitted papers should include a cover sheet with the title, author’s name, professional title and affiliation, and contact information. No identifying information should appear on subsequent pages. 
Submission Deadline
  • Deadline for submissions is March 1, 2018. 
  • Submissions should be sent by electronic mail to seidenbergprize@chicagoanalysis.org to the attention of Erika Schmidt, MSW at the Chicago Institute for Psychoanalysis, 122 S. Michigan Ave., Suite 1300, Chicago IL 60603.
Click here to review/download the call for papers