Fearful Symmetry: The Development and Treatment of Sadomasochism (Critical Issues in Psychoanalysis)
Brand: Jason Aronson, Inc.

Fearful Symmetry: The Development and Treatment of Sadomasochism (Critical Issues in Psychoanalysis)

  • Publish Date: 2007-07-26
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Author: Jack Novick;Kerry Kelly Novick

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Using data from infant observation, and child, adolescent, and adult analyses, the Novicks explicate a multidimensional, developmental theory of sadomasochism that has been recognized as a major innovation. According to the Novicks, each phase of development contributes to the clinical manifestations of sadomasochism. Painful experiences in infancy are transformed into a mode of attachment, then into an embraced marker of specialness and unlimited destructive power, then into a conviction of equality with oedipal parents, and, finally, into an omnipotent capacity to gratify infantile wishes through the coercion of others. By school age, these children have established a magic omnipotent system of thought which undermines alternate means of competent interactions with reality.


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