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Green, A. (1995). Has Sexuality Anything To Do With Psychoanalysis?. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 76:871-883.

(1995). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 76:871-883

Has Sexuality Anything To Do With Psychoanalysis?

André Green

This paper, prepared as a Sigmund Freud birthday lecture for the Anna Freud Centre, takes the opportunity to clarify and to debate some of the misunderstandings surrounding the meaning and significance of sexuality in psychoanalysis. The author departs from twin observations he has made in the last ten years: direct discussion of sexuality seems to have declined in ordinary clinical presentations and sexuality also seems to have become marginalised and restricted to specialised papers in psychoanalytic journals. Attempting to question and understand this trend the author recalls that Freud placed sexuality at the centre of psychic development, psychoanalytic theory and clinical work. The contemporary and fashionable focus on object relations, pregenital fixations, borderline pathology and theories and techniques drawn from observations of child development have obscured, the author argues, the meaning and importance of sexuality in psychoanalytic theory and practice. A condensed review of Freud's ideas about sexuality and a re-evaluation of them is aimed at restoring the importance of genital sexuality and the Oedipus complex to their central place. For this author today's sexuality is not Freud's sexuality.

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