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The Information icon (an i in a circle) will give you valuable information about PEP Web data and features. You can find it besides a PEP Web feature and the author’s name in every journal article. Simply move the mouse pointer over the icon and click on it for the information to appear.

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Slap, J.W. (1980). American Imago. XXXV, 1978: The Personality of Michelangelo Buonarroti: Some Reflections. Richard and Editha Sterba. Pp. 158-177.. Psychoanal Q., 49:170-170.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: American Imago. XXXV, 1978: The Personality of Michelangelo Buonarroti: Some Reflections. Richard and Editha Sterba. Pp. 158-177.

(1980). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 49:170-170

American Imago. XXXV, 1978: The Personality of Michelangelo Buonarroti: Some Reflections. Richard and Editha Sterba. Pp. 158-177.

Joseph W. Slap

The Sterbas find that Michelangelo's personality and life course were significantly shaped by conflicts over his aggression toward his mother; she had placed him as a newborn with a wet-nurse in a stonemason's family and never took him back, dying when he was five years old. This thesis finds support in Michelangelo's renderings of the madonna who, with one notable exception, appears indifferent to the babe. In the exception, the madonna appears to be a peasant and there is a stone quarry in the background, suggesting that this madonna represents the wet-nurse. The Sterbas feel that white marble symbolized the maternal breast for Michelangelo, and they explain his savage attacks on the marble and his inhibition in beginning and completing sculptures as derivatives of these conflicts.

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Article Citation

Slap, J.W. (1980). American Imago. XXXV, 1978. Psychoanal. Q., 49:170-170

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