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Kavaler-Adler, S. (2005). From Benign Mirror To Demon Lover: An Object Relations View Of Compulsion Versus Desire. Am. J. Psychoanal., 65(1):31-52.

(2005). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 65(1):31-52

Fathers And Daughters Special Section

From Benign Mirror To Demon Lover: An Object Relations View Of Compulsion Versus Desire

Susan Kavaler-Adler, Ph.D., ABPP

This article addresses the terrifying power of the father as a dynamic force within the psyche of the female. Its particular focus is on how the psychodynamic form of father internalization within the female effects her creative process and her creative work. Two cases vignettes of female writers are used to illustrate the interaction of traumatizing parental behavior and the daughter's incestuous desire on promoting compulsions and inhibitions in creative work. Writing blocks will be seen as a symptom of trauma and psychic conflict that has taken place in the oedipal and post oedipal years, as opposed to the creative compulsions that result from primal stage preoedipal trauma.

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