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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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Stein, R. (1998). The Enigmatic Dimension of Sexual Experience: The “Otherness” of Sexuality and Primal Seduction. Psychoanal Q., 67(4):594-625.

(1998). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 67(4):594-625

The Enigmatic Dimension of Sexual Experience: The “Otherness” of Sexuality and Primal Seduction

Ruth Stein, Ph.D.

Sexual experience has an “otherness” about it that distinguishes it from daily, habitual modes of experiencing and relating. This paper attempts to use Freud's and Laplanche's theories of primal seduction by the mother, who sends an “enigmatic signifier” or message of her sexuality to the child whom she nurtures. A tension arc is created between bodily sensations and the enigmatic other carrying over into adult life and constituting a bedrock for the sense of enigma and unfathomableness and the sense of the profound revelation that sometimes accompanies sexual experience. The author articulates links with transference and countertransference forms and offers new possibilities of understanding some clinical phenomena.

[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.]

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