The Traumatology Institute sponsors monthly lectures relevant to trauma. This the latest:
Disaster, Resilience, and the Archaeology of Native American Cultural Landscapes in Southeastern Louisiana by Professor Chris Rodning
Tulane University Department of Anthropology Noon to 12:50PM, October 12, 2017 in Room 343, Tulane School of Social Work, 127 Elke Place, New Orleans, LA 70118)

Chris Rodning is a professor of Anthropology and Anthropology Graduate Studies Coordinator. Dr. Rodning received his A.B. in anthropology from Harvard University in 1994, and his Ph.D. in anthropology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2004.

He has written or co-edited 6 books, including his 2015 book: Center Places and Cherokee Towns: Archaeological Perspectives on Native American Architecture and Landscape in the Southern Appalachians. University of Alabama Press, Tuscaloosa.


His interests as an archaeologist include relationships between people and place as they are manifested in monuments, mortuary practices, architecture and the built environment, and settlement patterns. Several recent and current projects concentrate on cases of culture contact and colonialism, and, particularly, encounters and entanglements between Native Americans and European explorers and colonists in western North Carolina and elsewhere in eastern North America. Professor Rodning teaches courses on North American archaeology, culture contact and colonialism, and the archaeology of cultural landscapes.

Professor Chris Rodning has thought the meaning of resilience in his research on early Native Americans adaptation to trauma and catastrophe. He has noted that “Resilience is the capacity of cultural systems to regenerate themselves after catastrophe, crisis, collapse, and disturbance.”


He found that the earth works created by Native Americans living in the Lower Mississippi Valley and coastal Louisiana are evidence of resilience to change and disasters. These people continued to rebuild their mounds and mound building following traumatic events. He notes that these earth works serve as “. . . persistent monumental places in dynamic environments, and they were sources of cultural stability and resilience.”


His presentation will discuss the results of his many years studying the Native Americans who lived in this region long before the United States was born. He will share his insights about these people and how they were able to endure many generations of natural disasters and challenges and the indications of their ways of life and survival and thriving, despite the challenges.

Other presentations:
I continue to make available the presentations I deliver each year. I add some additional background information. I then give this information out to the audience for their review during and following the presentation so that they can follow along or return to it as they need.

Figley, C. R. (2017). Compassion Fatigue: Recognizing and Managing Secondary Traumatic Stress.  Invited webinar for the American Psychosocial Oncology Society Webinar,  from New Orleans, January 10. 
           Goal: To build compassion fatigue resilience among oncology professionals. 
Topics: Define compassion fatigue, secondary traumatic stress, the Compassion Fatigue Resilience Model to guide in self care, building resilience to prevent Compassion Fatigue.
Note: This lecture does not focus on caring for the patients. This lecture focuses on caring for the caregiver
Sharing: I am uploading this presentation as a way of recognizing and expressing my appreciation for all health and behavioral health care professionals, especially in the field of oncology. Day after day they answer the call of duty to help those who are suffering. Audio webinars are challenging because you are unable to see the audience. 

Figley, C. R. (2017). History of Trauma Part 2: Lessons Learned: Traumatology Institute Lecture Series, Tulane University Traumatology Institute, at the School of Social Work Room 343, January 13. 

Goal: The purpose of the lecture is to share what we have learned about the history of trauma: Where it started, the names, definitions, and symptoms of what is now called PTSD that can be relevant in helping the traumatized.

Educational Objectives:

1.     Able to trace the history of trauma’s earliest conceptions, causes, and consequences up to today which illustrate the universality of trauma.

2.     Identify the dozen lessons from history that guide clinical practice today with the traumatized.

Regarding Lecture Part 1, cite and explain the 6 Lessons Learned

       Lesson 1: Trauma is defined as the consequence of being wounded mentally and physically

       Lesson 2: Mental trauma treatment was by physicians, shaman, healers, and theologians.

       Lesson 3: Mental Trauma was perceived as injuries of the soul that is subjective and hidden.

       Lesson 4: Physical Trauma was the responsibility of medical professionals and services from the beginning of our understanding of trauma.

       Lesson 5: Manifestations of trauma included out of body experiences, trauma memories in flashbacks, amnesia, and disjointed memories of the trauma, fear reactions, stress reactions, difficulty concentrating and sleeping.

       Lesson 6: “What can be done can be undone” (Charcot, 1870) in treating hysteria-like symptoms.

Regarding Lecture Part II, cite and explain the 5 Lessons Learned

       Lesson 7: The measurement of stress and adaptation flourished during and following WW II in studying all forms of stress, the impact was similar, including traumatic stress.

       Lesson 8:  Freud offered a mechanism of “transference” and the tendency to be compelled to repeat the traumatic event; mulling over what one is fearful until no longer so. This is the essence of desensitization that was later described as a reciprocal inhibition (Wolpe, 1958).

       Lesson 9: Reciprocal inhibition holds the key to the invention of new desensitization methods to help the traumatized and their memory management.

       Lesson 10: The DSM-1, published in 1952, PTSD was called Gross Stress Reactions not a disorder or mental illness

       Lesson 11:  The DSM-3, PTSD replaced Gross Stress Reactions and classified as an anxiety disorder, a mental illness, despite the opportunity to focus on the injury manifested in measurable traumatic stress reactions.

       Lesson 12: The universality of trauma, its causes, consequences, and resilience is available and understood widely.

  • Figley, C. R. (2017). Compassion fatigue and its relationship to health and resilience. Guest lecture in Professor Mark Russell's course on ethics of psychological practice. Antioch University in Seattle, Washington, USA. Lecture is based on the The Military Health Institute Distinguished Lecture at the  University of Texas Science Center, San Antonio, delivered in 2016
            Goal: To build compassion fatigue resiliency. 
Topics: Addressing the requirements for caring for those who "bore the battle" and their families who struggle the best they can to care for them and themselves; Define compassion fatigue and the critical concepts in building resilience.
Note: This lecture does not focus on caring for the patients. This lecture focuses on caring for the caregiver psychologist
Sharing: I am uploading this presentation as a way of recognizing and expressing my appreciation for all health and behavioral health care professionals.


  1. Figley, C. R., Ellis, A. E., Reuther, B. T., & Gold, S. N. (in press, 2016). The study of trauma: An historical overview. In S. Gold (ed.) Handbook of Trauma Psychology, Volume 1. Washington, DC: APA books.
  2. Figley, C. R. & Burnette, C. E. (in Press, 2017). Building bridges: Connecting systemic trauma and family resilience in the study and treatment of diverse traumatized families. Traumatology, 23:1. 
  3. Gilman, S. L., King, H., Porter, R., Rousseau, G. S. & Showalter, E. (1993). Hysteria: Beyond Freud. Los Angeles: University of California Press.
  4.  Ludick, M. & Figley, C. R. (in press, 2017). Toward a Mechanism for Secondary Trauma Induction and Reduction: Reimagining a Theory of Secondary Traumatic Stress. Traumatology, 23:1.
  5.  Russell, M.C., Figley, C. R. & Robertson, K. R. (2015). Investigating the Psychiatric Lessons of War and Pattern of Preventable Wartime Behavioral Health Crises. Journal of Psychology and Behavioral Science, 3:1, 1-12.
  6. Figley, C. R. & Boscarino, J. (2012). The Traumatology of life. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 200: 1113-1120.
  7. Boscarino, J. A., Kirchner, H. L., Hoffman, S. N., Sartorius, J., Adams, R. E., and Figley, C. R. (2011). A Brief Screening Tool for Assessing Psychological Trauma in Clinical Practice: Development and Validation of the New York PTSD Risk Score. Gen Hosp Psychiatry. [on line edition July 20]

All the above papers are available for download at ResearchGate.Net.

See below for a copy of the presentation.

Charles Figley, Ph.D.,
Sep 9, 2017, 4:14 AM
Charles Figley, Ph.D.,
Jan 13, 2017, 8:26 AM
Charles Figley, Ph.D.,
Jan 6, 2017, 7:58 AM