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Tip: To sort articles by sourceā€¦

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

After you perform a search, you can sort the articles by Source. This will rearrange the results of your search, displaying articles according to their appearance in journals and books. This feature is useful for tracing psychoanalytic concepts in a specific psychoanalytic tradition.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Carlson, S. (2016). Please Select Your Gender: From the Invention of Hysteria to the Democratizing of Transgenderism by Patricia Gherovici Routledge, New York, 2010; 280 pp; $42.26.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 97(1):239-243.

(2016). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 97(1):239-243

Please Select Your Gender: From the Invention of Hysteria to the Democratizing of Transgenderism by Patricia Gherovici Routledge, New York, 2010; 280 pp; $42.26.

Review by:
Shanna Carlson

In Please select your gender: From the invention of hysteria to the democratizing of transgenderism, Lacanian psychoanalyst Patricia Gherovici proceeds from an ethical premise. In her own words: “I have tried to explore

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what it means to sustain the analytic promise, to operate with the analyst's desire for pure difference in today's cultural context” (p. 247). This ethical premise, which informs how she listens to her analysands, may explain why so much of the book sounds rather strange, knitting together as it does singular truths and episodes articulated in the clinical setting, where free association reigns. Gherovici's discussion of sexual difference and transgender identity draws on sources that would be familiar to students of psychoanalytic, queer, or transgender theory. Her core arguments, however, do not sit easily with the historic Lacanian take on transgender people, or with queer theory doxa, or (more predictably) with dominant ideas about sex and gender in the U.S. today. These arguments include the notion that sexual identity at its seeming easiest is only ever “a happy uncertainty” (p. 185), that “sex needs to be symbolized, and gender needs to be embodied” (p. 230), and that some “sexes” today may be sinthomatic, thus of a different order altogether than either biological sex or gender identity. These claims, which rest on her analysands’ innovations as articulated in the clinic, have the potential

[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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