This is an article posted on November the 4 th, on a french web-journal, " RUE 89 "
This article caused a buzz (more than 600 comments and the most read from all articles of this web-journal)
You can see the film here ( in english)
“The Wall” reveals psychoanalysis control over the treatment of autism. Three psychoanalysts are trying to prevent the film, which they regard as partisan, from being broadcasted.
“The Wall : psychoanalysis put to the test for autism” reveals how, in France, the treatment of patients with autism is totally blocked by psychoanalysts and psychiatrists, to the exclusion of any other approach.
Sophie Robert is a filmmaker and a producer, with a passion for psychoanalysis; she criticizes the Freudian view of women as “sexually psychogenetic”. For four years, she has led an anthropological enquiry on “orthodox” psychoanalysts’ practises, which are actually relatively unknown to the public at large, and which she considers “dogmatic”.
“At first, I was thinking about a more nuanced approach in my work. My goal was to make a comprehensive review of psychoanalysis, to ask them : “What do you take and what do you leave in Freud and Lacan’s work?”
I found out the existence of dogmas that can’t be debated whatsoever, such as the idea that women are all psychotic when they give birth to their child, who is a substitute for the phallus...”
To assume their politically incorrect speech
She took 27 interviews, approached TV Channels to sell them a series of several 52-minute-programmes, and eventually got a financial help from the association “Autistes sans Frontière” to finish a first episode, that is webcast since September via the association’s website. The follow-on episode is currently under preparation.
While facing the camera, the therapists assume the politically incorrectness in their speech. But once they watch the film, three of them get choked up with anger. They apply the Regional Court, which appoints a court bailiff in order to get the recordings seized.
There is still little clarity about their purpose, since their lawyer, Me Christian Charrière-Bournazel, has not answered to our requests. But according to the injunction Rue89 has been able to consult, they seem to be making a call to ban the film.
“The recordings will confirm their speeches have been distorted”, the injunction states. Seizing the recordings will prevent the filmmaker to “destroy them in order to avoid any court ban on her film, and more generally, avoid any liability action.
They allege that Sophie Robert “introduced herself as a journalist, whereas she’s actually a manager of a production company.” : they forget you don’t need a press pass to shoot a documentary as an author.
They were “stunned to discover that their interviews have been cut off and manipulated to create a partisan film; cuts are parts of a documentary filmmaker’s normal duties, and it is part of freedom of speech to give him the right to choose them. It is not unusual for authors to assume a partisan viewpoint in his work.
They consider the speakers’ thoughts and speeches have been oversimplified and misrepresented by the comments and their meanings”: there is nothing that prohibits to comments to deal with the interviews, nor to take on an opposite view.
They feel “trapped” in a film that is not, according to them, a documentary but a “controversial undertaking meant to ridicule psychoanalysis, to the benefit of cognitive-behavioural therapies (CBT).
“Violation of the confidentiality of journalistic sources”
The filmmaker does not want the complainants to think she has “anything to hide”; she re-transcribed three hours of recorded interviews with the three psychoanalysts who are sueing her (Esthela Solano Suarez, Eric Laurent et Alexandre Stevens, members of the School of the Freudian Cause).
She recently transmitted to the bailiff a DVD featuring the rough images of the interviews with time codes, “so that they can see there are no unwanted cuts in the footage.”
According to her lawyer, Me Benoît Titran, asking the recordings to be seized is a violation of the confidentiality of journalistic sources, protected by the law n° 2010-1 of January 4th, 2010.
The lawyer sought an urgent order from the judge to have the initial order cancelled; a hearing is scheduled for November 15th, at the Lille Regional Court. According to Me Titran :
“The work has been done fairly; the shooting authorizations prove it, their words have been correctly reported, and there is no infringement of probity, otherwise they would have sued for defamation.”
Parents of autistic children: “If you denounce, you are publicly pilloried!”
The documentary has already garnered considerable attention among parents of autistic children and within the associations supporting them. The current proceedings give it an even bigger impact.
Delphine Piloquet, the General Delegate for Autistes Sans Frontière, swears “the process will not stop here.”
“It all gives the impression that we attack a religion of State. This film is stricken by a fatwa, whereas its great strength lies in the fact that the outrageous remarks are said by the psychoanalysts themselves while they’re interviewed.”
This mother of an autistic child reminds us that it’s out of “pragmatism” and not “ideology” that she decided to release her son from the mental hospital where he was stagnating, to reintegrate him into “our world” using behaviourist techniques.
The documentary filmmaker’s point of view is in line with the parents’, and she’s listened to their call for help.
“It’s delusional! Every day, mothers call to tell me how confounded they felt by the disorders diagnosed by their psychiatrists, who use people’s sufferings to indoctrinate instead of questioning themselves... And if you denounce that, you are publicly pilloried.”
“The truth is that she’s managed to make them tell what they really think and never tell the parents, she’s succeeded to lift the veil.”