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Narcissism, Gender Roles and Psychopathy: Exploring intersecting and reciprocal relationships e-learning course

e-learning course 

Speakers: Dr Gwen Adshead & Dr Michael Beattie

Product: e-learning course
Price: £60

CPD Hours: 3

Instructions on how to access the e-learning course will be included in a downloadable document in your booking confirmation email (under ‘Download’). The e-learning course becomes available within 24 hours from placing the order and online access remains available for 2 years from the date you receive the e-learning course.

It has become popular to suggest that our social media-obsessed modern world is narcissistic, but it is not always clear that we really understand and agree on what is meant by narcissism in culture and relationships.  At the same time, traditional gender roles are being increasingly questioned in a world emerging from historically patriarchal cultures. At this practical and intellectually stimulating seminar we explore the intersections between socially endorsed traditional gender roles and our understandings of narcissistic disorders and character traits. Do certain ways of conforming to gender norms generate narcissistic and psychopathic ways of relating to others? And if so, how can we understand these processes better and work more effectively with our clients when these processes create problems in living?

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Full Course Information

Dr Adshead and Dr Beattie present and discuss illustrative case vignettes to unpack and explore the reciprocal relationship between strong conformity to gender norms and problems in interpersonal relationships.  What are the different maladaptive ways in which power and control might be transacted between partners in a relationship?  What is the role of shame in gender socialisation and how might narcissism and psychopathy help to defend us against feeling shamed by others?  How can we learn to build trust in our relationships and hold our gender roles less rigidly? Importantly, we discuss how the intersections of gender roles, narcissism and psychopathology present in clinical settings and specifically consider the following:

  • Thinking about traditional gender normsAlthough it is acknowledged that there are multiple ways of being masculine and performing masculinity, the way in which men in Western culture understand their gender role is influenced by certain norms
    • We explore these core norms and the ways they influence how boys and men gain acceptance into and maintain their position within the masculine tribe
    • We will also touch briefly on the norms of orthodox femininities to see how a culture of complementary opposites can act to produce a very binary and split gender narrative
  • Thinking about narcissism and psychopathyNarcissism and psychopathy are comparatively modern concepts associated with ‘badness’ and social undesirability
    • We evaluate the shared features across narcissism, psychpathology and traditional accounts of masculinity
    • We also discuss the function of such concepts in both popular discourse and in therapeutic contexts
  • Exploring intersectionsSome of the defining characteristics of masculinity and narcissism appear to map onto one another, so how do we make sense of this?
    • We bring together the two strands of the webinar and explore the intersections and reciprocal relationships between gender norms, narcissism and psychopathy
    • Is there a pro-social aspect to narcissism and psychopathy where traditionally the tribe has needed these traits to be held by members to ensure the safe functioning of the group?
    • If these traits are socially endorsed as norms, how important is it to understand their flexible application?

About the speakers

Dr Gwen Adshead is a psychotherapist, group analyst and forensic psychiatrist. She trained as a psychiatrist, and then as a forensic psychiatrist after completing a master’s Degree in medical law and ethics at King’s College, London. She was lecturer in victimology at the Institute of Psychiatry, where she studied interpersonal trauma and its effects; then trained as a psychotherapist, with a particular interest in Attachment Theory. She first started work at Broadmoor Hospital as a senior psychiatric trainee in 1990; and over the last twenty years has worked as a responsible clinician, as well as a consultant psychotherapist.

Her research interests include moral reasoning in psychopaths and antisocial men; the attachment narratives of abusive mothers; and how psychotherapies work with violent people. Gwen has published over 100 papers, book chapters and commissioned papers; co-edited three books and is working on three more.

Gwen’s principle training is group dynamic; but she also has experience of cognitive approaches to therapy, DBT, and mentalization based therapies.

Dr Michael Beattie is a HCPC Registered Chartered Counselling Psychologist with a research interest in the psychology of men and masculinities.  In addition, he has worked in the field of sexuality, sexual identity and sexual health as well as with issues of gender identity and gender dysphoria.  His book Counselling Skills for Working with Gender Identity & Gender Dysphoria was published with colleagues by Jessica Kingsley in 2018. He currently works as a Counselling Psychologist at the NHS Gender Identity Clinic in London.  Prior to entering the field of counselling psychology Michael worked in marketing communications, facilitating strategic planning and training sessions for clients across the world.

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