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Moss, D. (2001). Civilization And Its Discontents: An Ongoing Update. Part 2: Homophobia In Men. Psychoanal. Rev., 88(3):393-400.

(2001). Psychoanalytic Review, 88(3):393-400

Civilization And Its Discontents: An Ongoing Update. Part 2: Homophobia In Men

Donald Moss, M.D.

Being a verry drunk homofobick I flipped out and began to pistol whip the fag with my gun.”

—From a letter written in prison by Aaron McKinney, one of the killers of Matthew Shephard, quoted in Loffreda (2000)

The original project of psychoanalysis included an active, and radical, inquiry regarding the dynamics binding clinical to cultural phenomena, problems of self-regulation to problems of social regulation. Of course, much about psychoanalysis has changed during the course of its first century. Not least of those changes has been a narrowing of its focus, a move away from the public sphere and toward a reconceptualized, and less permeable, consulting room. That move has not been complete; the consulting room still resonates with sounds of the street. Within psychoanalysis, the force of its broad original program of inquiry has been most energetically sustained in recent years by feminist, gay, and lesbian critique. This series of articles, each of which will be a psychoanalytic reaction to contemporary developments, aims to participate in and broaden the reach of that critique, while serving as a reminder of the potentially vital place psychoanalysis might still claim in the pertinent discourses of everyday life.

As psychoanalysts and as citizens, we are inundated with evidence of the continuing, always malign and often malignant, presence of homophobia—in ourselves, our patients, our colleagues, and throughout our cultural surround.

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