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González, F.J. (2012). Loosening the Bonds: Psychoanalysis, Feminism, and the Problem of the Group. Studies in Gender and Sexuality, 13(4):253-267.

(2012). Studies in Gender and Sexuality, 13(4):253-267

Loosening the Bonds: Psychoanalysis, Feminism, and the Problem of the Group

Francisco J. González, M.D.

This article reflects on Jessica Benjamin's important first book, The Bonds of Love (1988), considering one of its greatest contributions to be the cultural shift it helped inaugurate in the psychoanalytic understanding of gender and its ethos of reworking and historicizing core psychoanalytic concepts. In this spirit, and following Benjamin's reference to Freud's Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego (1921), it offers a reconceptualization of the Oedipus, adding to it the psychoanalytic idea of the group. Using groups to theorize gender allows greater flexibility and a more nuanced description of the intersection of the social with subjectivity than do more traditional readings that rely on individual accounts of identification.

[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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