We tell ourselves stories like these because we have to; because if we don’t, we will lose ourselves to madness. Which is nothing other than, in its multifarious symptom formations, a condition in which narrative does not function; it is nothing other than the inability to tell these stories.
— CM
 
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Claire-Madeline grew up in the same home that provided the setting of her own mother's childhood.  Raised there by her mother and maternal grandmother, Claire-Madeline grew up listening to stories: stories of photographs hung in frames, of relatives long gone—living but elsewhere (in both the literal and symbolic senses).  At the undergraduate level, Claire-Madeline studied psychoanalytic theory at Eugene Lang College, The New School for Liberal Arts, before enrolling at Sarah Lawrence College as an MFA candidate in their creative writing program.

I didn’t do well as a student of writing, generally speaking, because writing departments are fundamentally unconcerned with the study of loss in the formation of the human subject. I saw this as a problem because all writing ultimately concerns characters: that is, the subjectivities of characters. All writing therefore concerns loss: the way we are born of loss, and into loss, in different narrative constructions.

As a student of psychoanalysis, Claire-Madeline is interested in the way the stories we've been told about who we are -- the stories we inherited at birth -- organize our subjectivities.  As a student of writing,  she is interested in how to intervene at the level of narrative to resurrect us from the way these stories fail us, allowing us to live beyond our memories and the symptoms they contain.  Her writing, equal parts personal narrative and theoretical analysis, has been published in both creative and academic publications.

Her conviction in the role creative writing plays in developing a sense of self has lead Claire-Madeline to work at the intersection of psychology and the arts, in programs which intervene in the parent-child relationship.   Most recently, she lead a creative writing workshop in The Westchester County Correctional Facility which encouraged incarcerated mothers to use story-telling to repair the rupture in their relationship with their child during their sentencing.  In the past, she lead a therapeutic group under the direction of The Coalition Against Child Abuse and Neglect for mothers and their children who have been removed from their care due to the intervention of Child Protective Services.   In her spare time, Claire-Madeline volunteers as a juror for a scholarship program offered by her alma matter to high school students who demonstrate excellence in creative writing.

While in graduate school for the arts, Claire-Madeline maintains her education in psychoanalysis by serving as a host at The New Books in Psychoanalysis Network, where she interviews authors of psychoanalytic texts.  If you're an author who'd like to be represented on the network, please don't hesitate to pitch your book to her.