Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To see papers related to the one you are viewing…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

When there are articles or videos related to the one you are viewing, you will see a related papers icon next to the title, like this: RelatedPapers32Final3For example:


Click on it and you will see a bibliographic list of papers that are related (including the current one).  Related papers may be papers which are commentaries, responses to commentaries, erratum, and videos discussing the paper.  Since they are not part of the original source material, they are added by PEP editorial staff, and may not be marked as such in every possible case.


For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Singer, J.L. (1996). Fantasy's Force. Contemp. Psychoanal., 32:155-157.

(1996). Contemporary Psychoanalysis, 32:155-157

Fantasy's Force

Jerome L. Singer, Ph.D.

A review of By Force of Fantasy: How We Make Our Lives by Ethel S. Person, M.D. New York: Basic Books, 1995. xi + 276 pp.

LET ME STATE AT THE OUTSET that this book is thoroughly enjoyable to read, full of rich clinical and literary examples and intriguing insights, and broad-ranging in its implications about the human condition. Dr. Person, a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst associated with the Columbia Psychoanalytic Institute, has over a twenty-year period written about romantic love and its relations to personal imagery, about transvestite and lesbian expressions and fantasies, and about gender differences and social roles.

In this volume, she brings her extensive clinical experience and previous scholarship together in an effort to provide a comprehensive account of the central role that our childhood and adult daydreams play in the formation of our personalities, our social and sexual expectations, and, indeed, in our political perspectives. Using numerous examples, she covers the daydreams of daily life, the possible links between such fantasies and night dreams or play behaviors, the role of erotic fantasies, and the importance of our recurrent fantasies as guideposts towards careers, styles of intimacy, and sexual variation. The book includes intriguing chapters on shared fantasies, with which pairs of siblings, parents and children, or lovers feed and nurture each other's views of reality. The influences on personal and political behaviors of vicarious fantasies drawn from literature, film, or television are also reviewed. Finally, there is a daring chapter on how national or broadly culturally shared fantasies influence such varied historical trends as the way we view love and establish national goals. Her daring conclusion merits quotation.

Fantasy is to cultural evolution as mutation is to biological evolution, and cultural mutations, like biological mutations, may benefit us, but they may also kill us. (p. 217)


0010-7530/96 $2.00 + .05

Copyright © 1996 W. A. W. Institute

20 W. 74th Street, New York, NY 10023

All rights of reproduction in any form reserved.

Contemporary Psychoanalysis, Vol. 32, No. 1 (1996)

- 155 -

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2018, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.