Psychoanalysis and gender

Psychoanalysis and gender

Science, witchcraft, psychoanalysis and gender Science and gender Our ideas of (modern) science: reflect gendered assumptions - gender studies brings new knowledge about very diverse fields) - gender studies is not only about

women/femininity) The gendering of science Science 1. is masculine Most scientists are male 2. The problems of science are masculine

3. The very idea of science is masculine The gendering of science More general critique of science Undoing the myth of objectivity, neutrality: production of knowledge Serving power, domination, war, industry, neglecting spirituality

Science is modern Knowledge as power (Nietzsche: will to power) Francis Bacon (1561-1626) Knowledge/science: Empire of Man over Nature

Image of courtship and marriage: Let us establish a chaste and lawful marriage between Mind and Nature I am come in very truth leading to you Nature with all her children to bind her to your service and make her your slave by means that do not merely exert a gentle guidance over natures course; they have the power to conquer and subdue her, to shake her to her foundations.

Nature is only to be commanded by Gendered metaphors of science hard sciences, facts vs. humanities Nature: fertile, passive, subjugated, virgin, unexplored, untouched, veiled Cognition/science: unveiling, mastery, domination (sometimes penetration)

Separation between subject and object Scientist: uninvolved, unaffected by the object Object-relations theory (Winnicott) Growing up, acquiring selfhood: self and other:

separation merging Merging associated with the mother (femin.) Autonomy and separation: non-mother (father) anxiety of merging, of (re)engulfment reinforced by cultural expectations science Science:

the perfect slot for boys separation, mastery, objectification, domination, objectivity, rationality, impersonality (boys choosing science subjects: not a cause but an effect) science Science excludes other kinds of

relationship magic, alchemy: secret sympathies subjectivity, emotionality, involvement, unity Avatar (James Cameron, 2009) Avatar business,

military conquest, science Quaritsch: Out there, every living thing that crawls and flies wants to kill you Jake Sully: I told myself I could pass any test a man could pass. Avatar project: (scientifically controlled) merging (linking) Quaritsch: the project is a bad joke. A

bunch of limp-dick science majors Avatar 2 Scientist: Grace Augustine (Sigourney Weaver) I want to take some samples Pandora - Eywa

Hometree, Tree of Souls, tsaheylu (bond) Ecosystem (Lovelocks Gaia theory) masculine science leads to ecological catastrophe (Avatar) New paradigm: sustainable development

Witchcraft (1) Authority of the Church over things supernatural (2) Growing authority of science (repressed female knowledge) the reality of witchcraft

effectively attested to the gravity of the dangers represented by women dangers against which reason and the new science promised Witchcraft (3) Demonisation of female sexuality

All witchcraft comes from carnal lust, which is in women insatiable ...Wherefore for the sake of their lusts [women] consort with devils (Malleus Maleficarum, 1486) Medicalisation of the female body 1 The femaly body remains a problem

Eg. pregnancy redefined as illness Parallel processes at work: Consolidation of medicine Rise of psychology/psychiatry Upper-middle class women deprived of meaningful activity (work, mothering) escape: invalidism Medicalisation of the female body 2

James McGrigor Allen: Every woman is ... Always more or less an invalid. - Everything that went beyond the properly feminine was pathologised Sir Allmouth Wright (bacteriologist): There is mixed up with the womens movement much mental disorder Witch replaced by Victorian Hysteria: the female malady

Hysteron - womb wandering womb theory (Plato) Physical or mental? Charles Kingsley: We must steer clear of the hysteric element, which I define as the fancy and emotions unduly excited by suppressed sexual excitement (1870) Jean-Martin Charcot (182593) Neurologist in the

Salptrire hospital in Paris - Tuesday sessions Andr Brouillet: Charcot in the Salpetriere (1887) Iconography of hysteria Charcot

Stigmata: symptoms between attacks stigma diaboli in the Malleus Maleficarum Hypnosis - role of words Hysteria: imitation of an illness Emphasis shifts from illness to patient Sigmund Freud psychoanalysis

Psychoanalysis emerged out of the female malady The hysterical woman: cultural emblem, symptom of more general disorders (repression of sexuality, of the body) Ambiguous

position of psychoanalysis from a gender perspective (ally or foe) Freuds insights 1 We are all ill normality is not God-given but a shifting category (patient and analyst) The analytic couch

The great question that has never been answered and which I have not yet been able to answer, despite my 30 years of research into the feminine soul, is: WAS WILL DAS WEIB? (What does the woman want?) (Freuds letter to Marie Bonaparte)

Freuds insights 2 (female) sexuality is sg natural living in society = repression men enjoy the privilege of double sexual morality (women suffer more from repression) harmful nature of restrictive ideas of femininity

Hysteria reinterpreted as neurosis When women are subjugated to the disillusionment of marriage, they fall ill of severe neuroses which permanently darken their lives the cure for nervous illness arising from marriage would be marital unfaithfulness

Freuds insights 3 Reinterpretation of motherhood as full of sexuality (vs Madonna and child image) Freud addressed women

Freud did listen to women Leidengeschichte (stories of suffering) Talking cure Hypnosis vs. Free association Reading symptoms Women always make the best psychoanalysts until they fall in love,

and then they make the best patients (A. Hitchcock: Spellbound) Anna Freud, Melanie Klein, Marie Bonaparte, Helen Deutsch, Trk Mria, Elizabeth Roudinesco, Joan Riviere, Maud Mannoni, Karen Horney, Nancy Chodorow, Jessica Benjamin, Julia Kristeva

The Dora case study (Fragments of an Analysis of a case of Hysteria, 19011905) Ida Bauer ; Herr and Frau K. On Femininity the development of a little girl into a normal woman is more difficult and more complicated, since it includes two extra tasks to which there is nothing corresponding in the

development of a man the little girl is a little man Penis envy, castration complex women must be regarded as having little sense of justice Nancy Chodorow ego psychology, psychosociology Parenting Identification with the mother: personal,

concrete, felt, individual - No need for a fantasy support figure Identification with the father: positional, abstract, cultural The psychosocial dynamics of families

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