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Reed, K. (2002). Listening to Themes in a Review of Psychoanalytic Literature About Lesbianism. Psychoanal. Inq., 22(2):229-258.

(2002). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 22(2):229-258

Listening to Themes in a Review of Psychoanalytic Literature About Lesbianism

Kay Reed, M.D.

Using the bibliography of the Committee on Homosexuality of the American Psychoanalytic Association as a resource, a wide review of the psychoanalytic literature on lesbianism and bisexuality in women was undertaken. An evolution in theory, over time, was observed in the writing by authors more familiar to most analysts. A second group of less widely known writers has also written extensively on the subject. This chapter focuses on the predominant, recurring themes found in the second body of work. These themes include: separating the concepts of gender identity and object choice; reexamining assumptions about developmental pathways; fluidity in object choice in women; dilemmas in lesbian experience; and treatment issues. Dilemmas include feeling different, coming out, relationship patterns, and decisions about parenting. Similarities between the ideas found in the two bodies of work are noted.

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