CAPA History in China
In 2001, Dr. Elise Snyder, an American analyst, was invited to give papers on psychoanalysis at conferences in Beijing and Chengdu. This was the first experience of a member of CAPA in China.
The following year, Dr. Snyder was again invited to Chengdu and established relation-ships with groups in Xi’an and in Beijing. Mental help professionals (MHPs) whom she met asked for supervisions by phone and email. A year later, a mental health professional from Chengdu asked for an analysis with an American analyst on Skype. Dr. Ubaldo Leli, an analyst affiliated with the Columbia Psychoanalytic Institute, began this analysis. This was the beginning of CAPA. Young MHPs are extraordinarily interested in psychoanalysis. They read the psychoanalytic literature widely, but their clinical knowledge lags, limited by access to Western clinicians who speak Mandarin. Dr. Snyder has visited China for at least 3 weeks each year since 2001. Requests for super vision and treatment became increasingly urgent. Dr. Snyder asked colleagues to provide help, but by 2006 it was clear that Chinese MHPs wanted an organized, systematic, complete training program. In 2008 the Basic Two-Year Training Program began. After graduation, the Basic Training graduates requested more training. In 2011, the Two-Year Advanced Training Program began. The best Basic graduates were invited. Various Fifth Year electives have since been offered: a course in Supervision, a course in Infant Observation, a Teacher Apprenticeship Program and many others. At present, more than 32 graduates of the Advanced Program are receiving full, distance, psychoanalytic training at APsaA institutes.
The more than 400 CAPA Students and Graduates are members of CAPAINCHINA (CIC). In cities and provinces where there are enough students and graduates, local groups have formed: in Beijing, Chengdu, Wuhan, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Jiangsu, Hubei, and Zhejiang which offer peer supervision, introductory courses in psycho-dynamic psychotherapy, and conferences. A psychotherapy training program based on the CAPA syllabus started in 2015 in Chengdu and one is about to begin in Shanghai. These steps are the road for our graduates eventually to take over CAPA functions. See CAPA Programs. In 2020 CIC will hold a national conference.
In 1929, Freud wrote to the ex-Minister of Education of China (Zhang Shizhao):
“I am pleased by your intention, in whatever manner you care to carry
out…(to) introduce psychoanalysis to your native country, China."