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Chodorow, N.J. (1989). What is the Relation between the Psychoanalytic Psychology of Women and Psychoanalytic Feminism?. Ann. Psychoanal., 17:215-242.

(1989). Annual of Psychoanalysis, 17:215-242

IV Psychoanalysis and Gender

What is the Relation between the Psychoanalytic Psychology of Women and Psychoanalytic Feminism?

Nancy J. Chodorow, PHD

This paper is about communication, or the lack of it, among people who write and think about psychoanalysis and women On one side, among psychoanalysts debate about women and femininity has become a topic of burgeoning interest in recent years. On the other side, psychoanalytic feminists—academic literary critics, philosophers, social scientists, feminist epistemologists—engage in a distinctly different set of discourses, about different questions.

My labels here do not do justice to the complexities of these protagonists' identities. Some who have contributed prominently to the psychoanalytic literature about women and femininity would, if asked, label themselves as feminist—as critical of and wishing to change the gendered and sexual status quo. Similarly, some whom I consider to have contributed primarily to psychoanalytic feminism are practicing analysts or therapists.

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