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Degl’Innocenti, B.G. (2019). Paola Marion – Il disagio del desiderio by Paola Marion. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 100(1):163-166.

(2019). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 100(1):163-166

Paola Marion – Il disagio del desiderio by Paola Marion

Review by:
Benedetta Guerrini Degl’Innocenti

Paola Marion’s book Il disagio del desiderio addresses, in the context of psychoanalytic reflection and practice, the potential repercussions of biotechnological innovations in the field of human procreation on founding aspects of personal identity such as the relationship with the body, sexuality, and the domain of pleasure. There are many features which make this study remarkable. First of all, the author has made an impressive effort to hold together the problematic aspects of a technology that is still evolving and its repercussions, as inevitable as they are unforeseeable, on the psychic life of individuals and couples, at the same time re-elaborating the Freudian legacy in the light of almost a century of often mutually challenging theories.

The whole of the book’s first part (“The scandal of sexuality”) is devoted to retracing the concept of the sexual and sexuality in psychoanalytic thought, illuminating consonances and dissonances between the models from Freud onwards, in order to describe – as the author says – what sexuality has meant for psychoanalysis, but above all what psychoanalysis has meant for sexuality. The author does this by following the lead of two articles which proposed two different theoretical models and have been important re-openings of the debate about the subject after a long period of the so-called “desexualisation” of psychoanalysis: André Green’s “Has sexuality anything to do with psychoanalysis?” from 1995, and the article published by Peter Fonagy in the International Journal in 2008, entitled “A genuinely developmental theory of sexual enjoyment and its implications for psychoanalytic technique”.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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