Sexual Orientation and Psychodynamic Psychotherapy: Sexual Science and Clinical Practice

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Overview

This book bridges psychoanalytic thought and sexual science. It brings sexuality back to the center of psychoanalysis and shows how important it is for students of human sexuality to understand motives that are often irrational and unconscious. The authors present a new perspective about male and female development, emphasizing the ways in which sexual orientation and homophobia appear early in life. The clinical section of the book focuses on the psychodynamics and treatment of homophobia and internalized homophobia.

Columbia University Press

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Editorial Reviews

American Academy of Psychoanalysis and Dynamic Psychiatry - Roman N. Anshin

The most clear thinking, completely erudite, and unbiased presentation of sexual research... that has yet been written.

American Academy of Psychoanalysis and Dynamic Psychiatry
The most clear thinking, completely erudite, and unbiased presentation of sexual research... that has yet been written.

— Roman N. Anshin, M.D.

American Journal of Psychiatry

[Richard C. Friedman and Jennifer I. Downey] have been at the forefront of the movement within psychoanalysis challenging previously orthodox ideas.... Friedman and Downey accurately discuss the dangers of psychoanalytic theorizing divorced from basic science and insist on a systems approach to human sexuality that integrates clinical and theoretical understanding.

Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease

A fascinating book.... A vital contribution to the ongoing dialogue about how sexual desire arises from the interplay of human constitution and the human proclivity for love, fantasy and sexual expression.

Journal of Analytical Psychology - Robert F. Tyminski

[H]ighly recommended because it presents a broad and encompassing view of current neurobiological research into sexual orientation. Further, it highlights in considerable detail a number of noteworthy, complicated clinical issues such as internalized homophobia, disclosure of the therapist's sexual orientation, the power of sexual fantasy, and gender development.

Journal of Homosexuality - Michael Ferguson

[Friedman and Downey] have effectively documented the carnage caused by the current antagonism toward homosexual relations in males.

American Psychoanalytic Association - Henry J. Friedman

Friedman and Downey not only make an important contribution to psychoanalysis; they have in addition begun the process of making psychoanalytic therapy relevant to the treatment of homosexual individuals.... It would be difficult to think of any other recent book that makes such an important contribution to the revision of psychoanalytic theory while advancing the therapeutic potential of psychoanalysis in the treatment of gay and lesbian individuals.

Journal of Analytical Psychology
[H]ighly recommended because it presents a broad and encompassing view of current neurobiological research into sexual orientation. Further, it highlights in considerable detail a number of noteworthy, complicated clinical issues such as internalized homophobia, disclosure of the therapist's sexual orientation, the power of sexual fantasy, and gender development.

— Robert F. Tyminski

Journal of Homosexuality
[Friedman and Downey] have effectively documented the carnage caused by the current antagonism toward homosexual relations in males.

— Michael Ferguson

American Psychoanalytic Association
Friedman and Downey not only make an important contribution to psychoanalysis; they have in addition begun the process of making psychoanalytic therapy relevant to the treatment of homosexual individuals.... It would be difficult to think of any other recent book that makes such an important contribution to the revision of psychoanalytic theory while advancing the therapeutic potential of psychoanalysis in the treatment of gay and lesbian individuals.

— Henry J. Friedman

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231120562
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 6/13/2002
  • Pages: 363
  • Lexile: 1350L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.33 (h) x 1.15 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard C. Friedman, M.D., is a clinical professor of psychiatry at Weill Medical College, Cornell University, and a lecturer at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He is the author of Male Homosexuality: A Contemporary Psychoanalytic Perspective.Jennifer I. Downey, M.D., is clinical professor of psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is the editor, with Richard C. Friedman, of Masculinity and Sexuality: Selected Topics in the Psychology of Men.

Friedman and Downey have coauthored numerous articles on psychoanalysis and sexuality. They are psychoanalysts in private practice in New York City.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Part 1: Theoretical/Developmental 1. Sexual Fantasies in Men and Women2. Genetic Influences on Sexual Orientation3. Psychoendocrinology and Sexual Orientation4. Psychoendocrinology and Role Behavior5. Freud, Oedipus, and Homosexuality6. Toward a Revised Formulation of Male Oedipal Aggression7. Psychobiology of Late Childhood: Significance for Developmental Psychoanalytic Theory8. Female Homosexuality: Classical Psychoanalytic Theory ReconsideredPart 2: Clinical 9. Homophobia, Internalized Homophobia, and the Negative Therapeutic Reaction10. Internalized Homophobia, Pathological Grief, and High-Risk Behavior in a Gay Man with Multiple Psychiatric Disorders11. Internalized Homophobia and Gender-Valued Self-Esteem in the Psychoanalysis of Gay Patients12. Homophobic Parents13. Psychopathology, Suicidality, and Homosexuality: New Developments14. Coming Out at Eighty-Four: The Psychotherapeutic Treatment of Internalized Homophobia in a Lesbian Patient15. Sexual Orientation and Psychoanalysis: Problems and Controversies16. The Model of Homosexuality as Psychopathology: Science and Psychoanalysis

Columbia University Press

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2002

    overall a very informative and interesting book

    I read this book with some anxiety being a college junior and not a psychologist or psychiatrist. I learned of it from my dad, a philosophy professor. I thought it was really superb and answered many question I had about homosexuality. For example, I am not gay and ever since the Matthew Shepard incident, I have been trying to understand why gay and lesbian people are the targets of hate crimes. It didn¿t seem to me that the motivation for hatred of gays is exactly the same as hatred for other minority groups. ¿Sexual Orientation and Psychoanalysis¿ explains the way that the homophobia-particularly in men has its roots in childhood- particularly the last part of childhood. One point it stresses is that it often seems to be traced back to middle school years and is a special type of bullying. Going back to my own experience with schoolyard bullies when I was in 6th grade-this made a lot of sense. I also learned a lot about the different pathways for sexual development in men and women. I now understand why ¿homosexuality¿ is not just one ¿thing¿ and how different gay and lesbian people are from each other. I was surprised to learn how similar the sexuality of lesbian is to heterosexual women, and gay men- to heterosexual men (even though there are also differences of course). Not all the material discussed in this book had equal interest for me. For example, I wasn¿t all that interested in the last chapter which is about the way psychoanalysts have thought about homosexuality over the years, but it was enlightening to better understand why they used to think that homosexuality was a mental illness. I did read some Freud and some of my teachers hated him and some admired him. At least with respect to sex-I appreciated knowing which of his theories are simply out of date. Friedman and Downey think that some of Freud¿s views are still helpful as well. All in all I give this book an ¿A¿ grade- and ¿even though it is demanding-it is worth the effort to read it. One good thing about it is that it is very clearly written and without psychobabble or jargon.

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