Dr Marita Vyrgioti

Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies
Dr Marita Vyrgioti



I am a Lecturer in the Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies, where I am also the Director of the BA in Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies I have a long-standing interest in the relationship between psychoanalysis and colonialism, in terms of their historical overlapping and the im/possibilities of the psychoanalytic clinic in colonial settings, but also in the epistemological and ethical implications of coloniality for the theorisation of the psychoanalytic subject. My research often revolves around questions of liminality, especially in relation to the ontological position of the racialised subject, and life on the boundary between life and death, humanness and non-humanness, as well as 'zones of non being'. This research focus is evident in my article 'A child is being eaten: Psychoanalysis in times of anti-blackness', published in the Psychoanalysis and History Journal (December 2023). More broadly, and drawing on my clinical work, my research revolves around psychoanalysis as a theory and a practice that can help us understand extreme states of mind. Theoretically, I am influenced by the works of Sigmund Freud, Frantz Fanon, and the British Object relations tradition, as well as postcolonial theory and Afropessimism. I am currently working on a monograph titled 'The Cannibal Scene: Psychoanalysis in times of Antiblackness', which explores how proto-colonial mythopoesis gave shape to a racialised scene at the heart of psychoanalysis, exposing the colonial unconscious as organised a racialised desire for dealing with difference through appropriation and engulfment. Alongside Professor Stephen Frosh and Dr Julie Walsh, I am co-editor in chief of the first Handbook of Psychosocial Studies, to be published by Palgrave in 2024. This is a capacious work which offers the first comprehensive treatment of the transdisciplinary field of psychosocial studies. I welcome proposals for PhDs on the following topics: -the intersections of psychoanalysis, coloniality and Afropessimism -the works of Sigmund Freud, Melanie Klein, Geza Roheim and Frantz Fanon -British object relations -the politics of the psychoanalytic colonial clinic -the body in psychoanalysis -psychoanalytic theories of eating and digestion -theories of interdependence and nurturance I am also training as a psychodynamic psychotherapist, at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust.


  • PhD in Psychosocial Studies Birkbeck College, University of London,

  • MA in Foundations of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust/University of Essex,

  • MA in Art and Politics, Department of Politics and International Relations Goldsmiths University of London,

Research and professional activities

Conferences and presentations

Digestive Processes in the Psychoanalytic Imagination

The Scottish Gut Project, Glasgow, United Kingdom, 27/4/2023

Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Living a Good Life: Critical Approaches to Wellness and Happiness (PA107)

  • Observation Skills for Counselling (PA132)

  • The Psychosocial Imagination (PA134)

  • Care, Intimacy, Vulnerability: an Introduction to Psychosocial Theory (PA135)

  • Counselling Skills for Therapeutic Work (PA210)

  • Organisational Dynamics (PA211)

  • Mentoring and Supervision (PA212)

  • Advanced Psychodynamic Observation and Reflective Practice (PA224)

  • Current Debates in Psychosocial Studies (PA407)

  • Reflective Practice (PA409)

  • Placement Year (PA500)

  • Dissertation (PA900)

  • Psychoanalysis and the Psychosocial (PA942)

  • Research Methods and Dissertation (PA981)


Journal articles (5)

Sheldon, R., Frosh, S. and Vyrgioti, M., Redeeming marriage? Bittersweet intimacy and the dialectics of liberation among Haredi Jews in London. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

Vyrgioti, M., (2023). 'A child is being eaten': Psychoanalysis in times of antiblackness. Psychoanalysis and History. 25 (3), 251-270

Vyrgioti, M., (2021). ‘The Royal Road to the Colonial Unconscious’: Psychoanalysis, Cannibalism, and the Libidinal Economy of Colonialism. Das Questões. 11 (1), 266-286

Vyrgioti, M., (2020). On Queerness, Motherhood and the Gift of Belonging. Studies in the Maternal. 13 (1)

Vyrgioti, M., (2015). Community beyond Identity. The International Journal of Civic, Political, and Community Studies. 12 (3), 1-9

Books (1)

Frosh, S., Vyrgioti, M. and Walsh, J., (2022). The Palgrave Handbook of Psychosocial Studies. Palgrave Macmillan. 978-3-030-61510-9

Book chapters (6)

Frosh, S., Vyrgioti, M. and Walsh, J., (2022). Handbook of Psychosocial Studies Introduction. In: The Palgrave Handbook of Psychosocial Studies. Editors: Frosh, S., Vyrgioti, M. and Walsh, J., . Palgrave, Macmillan. 1- 12. 978-3-030-61510-9

Vyrgioti, M., (2021). Freud and the Cannibal: Vignettes from Psychoanalysis' Colonial History. In: Wild Analysis: From the Couch to Cultural and Political Life. Editors: Bar-Haim, S., Coles, ES. and Tyson, H., . Routledge. 67- 81. 9781032061153

Vyrgioti, M., (2021). 'Hands, Face, Space': Psychoanalysis and Magical Thinking in COVID-19 Times. In: After Lockdown, Opening Up: Psychosocial Transformation in the Wake of COVID-19. Editors: Voela, A. and Ellis, D., . Palgrave Macmillan. 219- 235. 978-3030802776

Vyrgioti, M., (2020). Bêtes Noirs: as mulheres queer da psichanállise. In: Freud e o patriarcado. Editors: Martins Parrente, A. and Silveira, L., . Hedra. 8577156621. 9788577156627

Vyrgioti, M., (2019). In the Closets of Fanon and Riviere: Psychoanalysis, Postcolonial Theory and the Psychosocial. In: New Voices in Psychosocial Studies. Editors: Frosh, S., . Springer Nature. 23- 37. 3030327582. 9783030327583

Vyrgioti, M., (2019). Devouring: Jacques Derrida and the Deconstruction of Sovereignty. In: The Pathogenesis of Fear: Mapping the Margins of Monstrosity. Editors: Hollis Berry, E., . Brill. 29- 45. 9004388095. 9789004388093

+44 (0) 1206 872209


5A.211, Colchester Campus

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