Hannah Zeavin Interview in Mad in America

02 Jun, 2021

Hannah Zeavin Interview in Mad in America

How do mediated communications and technology impact our intimate relations? BCNM faculty Hannah Zeavin explores this relationship, discusses her upcoming book, The Distance Cure: A History of Teletherapy, and provides insight on human relationity from the perspectives of literature and media studies in her interview with Mad in America.

From the interview:

[The Distance Cure: A History of Teletherapy] focuses on asking: If “tele-” is not an absence or a loss, what is it? The book elaborates various forms of what I call “distanced intimacy.” This is another contribution, I hope, instead of assuming “tele-” is always a hopelessly lesser form of care, although it certainly can be. I investigate this real, 130-year long history of this form to upend that as a base assumption.


Care is going to look very different when it is being offered contingently and anonymously via the phone in San Francisco in the 1960s than it looks in the hands of an analyst and their patient who have been working together five times a week for a decade or more. The book asks us to really sit with each of these scenarios, especially those that might be thought of as para-therapeutic or activist-based care. It asks us to resist just writing them off as emergency care where nothing really happens, or only bad things happen.

Check out the entire interview here!