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Stein, T.S. (1995). The Homosexualities and the Therapeutic Process: Charles W. Socarides and Vamik Volkan (Eds.). Madison, CT: International Universities Press, 1991, i-xii + 1-315 pp., $47.50.. Psychoanal. Psychol., 12(1):171-176.

(1995). Psychoanalytic Psychology, 12(1):171-176

The Homosexualities and the Therapeutic Process: Charles W. Socarides and Vamik Volkan (Eds.). Madison, CT: International Universities Press, 1991, i-xii + 1-315 pp., $47.50.

Review by:
Terry S. Stein, M.D.

“But I don't want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.

“Oh, you can't help that,” said the Cat, “or you wouldn't have come here.”

“How do you know I'm mad?” said Alice.

“You must be,” said the Cat, “or you wouldn't have come here.”

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland, (cited in Gasson, 1978, p. 53)

If Alice had been a lesbian, then surely the psychoanalysts in this volume on homosexuality edited by Charles Socarides and Vamik Volkan would collectively be her Cheshire Cat, declaring her mad just because she entered the consultation room. There is really no argument against such a belief, once you see it as the truth, and Alice, like the patients described in this book, would undoubtedly soon be convinced by the perverse logic of her psychoanalyst that she were mad because she was lesbian and because she had come to see him or her in the first place.

Socarides, one of the editors of this book, remains the most persistent and productive purveyor of the “homosexuality as pathology” school of psychoanalysis, having published voluminously on the subject for the last four decades. He is joined by Vamik Volkan, who has published more about topics other than homosexuality, including numerous papers on transsexualism, as co-editor for this volume of 14 chapters, 12 about men, 1 about a lesbian, and 1 about a female-to-male transsexual.

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