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Devereux, G. (1960). Retaliatory Homosexual Triumph Over the Father—A Further Contribution to the Counter-Oedipal Sources of the Oedipus Complex. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 41:157-161.

(1960). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 41:157-161

Retaliatory Homosexual Triumph Over the Father—A Further Contribution to the Counter-Oedipal Sources of the Oedipus Complex

George Devereux, Ph.D.

In an earlier publication (4), which attempted to clarify certain neglected aspects of the myth of Oedipus, it was suggested that the oedipal fantasy involved not only the slaying of the father and cohabitation with the mother, but also—quite specifically—a homosexual triumph over the feminized father. It is proposed to document this latter aspect of the oedipal fantasy by means of a rather thinly disguised dream of the David and Goliath type, in which the homosexual triumph is clearly present, despite an inversion of affect in the critical scene.

The clinical material about to be presented was obtained from a talented young artist of exotic origin, after he had been in a twice-a-week face-to-face expressive therapy for some months. He had sought treatment for a potency disturbance, which appeared when he first fell in love with his second cousin, who was also the first woman he ever loved. The potency disturbance disappeared quite rapidly after he realized that it was due partly to oedipal anxieties and partly to his fear of becoming emotionally unfaithful to his mother.

The Dream:

'I am in a bathtub with a male cousin who is my age, and we are engaged in some kind of physical contest with, or are attacked outright by, some older and larger men, one of whom is my older cousin. Somehow I have the feeling that the cousin in the bathtub and I are not our present age, but much younger; we are boys struggling against adults and must defend the bathtub against them.

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