- February 21, 2019
- 7:00 pm
California Institute of Integral Studies
1453 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA 94103
Born and raised in Lebanon, writer Jessica Semaan moved to the US at age 24 to attend Stanford Business School. Her recent debut collection of poetry offers an upfront and moving glimpse into her own imperfect journey of healing.
Set against the backdrop of the Lebanese Civil War and her turbulent family life, Child of the Moon is a powerful reflection on her journey through fear, shame, despair, and the unconditional love that helped her begin to heal from childhood trauma.
Join CIIS Professor Jyoti Rao for a conversation with Jessica about her life and her latest work, an illustrated poetry collection about finding light in the darkness.
Jessica Semaan is a writer, poet, and performer. She finds inspiration in her journey to heal from complex trauma. Born and raised in Beirut, Lebanon, Jessica currently resides in San Francisco, where she is attending CIIS to become a psychotherapist. Jessica is a top writer on the platform Medium with close to 50,000 followers. Prior to following her authentic path of artist and healer, she attended Stanford Business School and founded The Passion Co., an organization that helps people find and pursue their passions. She is also one of the early Airbnb employees who was involved in building and scaling the hospitality startup.
Jyoti Rao joined the core faculty at CIIS in 2016 after teaching in ICP as a member of the adjunct faculty. An experienced clinician, supervisor, and instructor, she holds degrees from the California Institute of Integral Studies (MA) and the University of California at Berkeley (BA), and postgraduate training in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California at San Francisco. She is a Member-At-Large of the Board of Directors for the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society.
She teaches The Clinical Relationship, Multicultural Counseling, Psychodynamics, Psychopathology, and Trauma. In addition to her classroom teaching, she is the Intern Program Director at the Integral Counseling Center at Pierce Street, and regularly conducts training there on topics such as "The Inner Life of The Therapist," "Therapeutic Listening," and "Holding and The Therapeutic Relationship."
Her research interests include contemporary psychoanalytic theory and practice; applied psychoanalysis; psychoanalytic formulations of oppression and marginalization, especially among communities of color; the social unconscious; intergenerational transmission of trauma; clinical work with adult children of immigrants; as well as psychological dimensions of sacred musical traditions.