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Kavaler-Adler, S. (2003). Lesbian Homoerotic Transference in Dialectic with Developmental Mourning: On the Way to Symbolism From the Protosymbolic. Psychoanal. Psychol., 20(1):131-152.

(2003). Psychoanalytic Psychology, 20(1):131-152

Lesbian Homoerotic Transference in Dialectic with Developmental Mourning: On the Way to Symbolism From the Protosymbolic

Susan Kavaler-Adler, Ph.D., ABPP

This clinical study illustrates the developmental nature of homoerotic transference, when the psychoanalyst is attuned to the evolving dynamics of the mourning process, in this case with a lesbian analysand. The analysand's psychic fantasies of the female analyst as a muse and a demon lover figure are seen to transform into discrete mother and father transferences, as split off feminine and aggressive parts of the self are reintegrated along with heterosexual desires and oedipal desires. Protosymbolic enactments in terms of romantic gift giving and other seductive overtures transform into symbolic expressions of love, concern, regret, and tenderness. A lesbian marriage is preserved, and the loss of intimacy with men is mourned so that desires for intimacy with men can be sublimated.

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