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Dr. Dori Laub was born in Cernauti, Romania and is currently a practicing psychoanalyst in New Haven, Connecticut who works primarily with victims of massive psychic trauma as well as their children.

Dori is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Yale University School of Medicine and Co-Founder of the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies. He obtained his M.D. at the Hadassah Medical School at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel and his M.A. in Clinical Psychology at the Bar Ilan University in Ramat Gan, Israel. He was Acting Director of Genocide Study Program (GSP) at Yale between 2000 and 2003. Since 2001, he has served as Deputy Director for Trauma Studies for the GSP.

Dori has published on the topic of psychic trauma, its knowing and representation in a variety of psychoanalytic journals and has co-authored a book entitled Testimony-Crises of Witnessing in Literature, Psychoanalysis, and History with Professor Shoshana Felman.

The Quote

Dori talks about how he was profoundly influenced by one of his oldest friends who wasahead of his time in terms of listening to individuals and diagnosing those who have been traumatized. He shares the importance of what it means to be able, as a clinician, to provide a place to enable those to share their stories.

What Led to the Specialization of Trauma?

Dori shares how his experience as a Holocaust survivor as a young boy led to his interest in and passion for helping others who have been similarly impacted.

A Crucial Early Mistake

Dori talks about an early experience he had as a young psychoanalyst, while working with a young woman and how for four years he never asked the one question he should have.

Dori’s Why

Because it’s the truth, and I cannot live a lie. It’s my way of staying with what is true and what is core.

Dori’s Advice

  • Listen to yourself, if a certain statement doesn’t make sense then there’s probably something more there. Acknowledge to yourself that you’ve heard it, and then give it time and gently ask again.
  • Take things in small portions. You don’t have to attend to everything in one session.

Dori’s Go-To Books

Interview Links

Lisa Ferentz, LCSW-C, DAPA
Thema Bryant-Davis, PhD

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