Manual The Psychological Birth of the Human Infant: Symbiosis and Individuation (Maresfield Library)

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Granted ideological supremacy both in the family and in public because of the very elusiveness of his role, father's unavailability means that until recently, the boy has defined and constructed his masculinity in negative terms, by denigrating all things feminine Chodorow, Thus, the patriarchal son repudiates his core of feminine creativity, emphatic relatedness and capacity to nurture.

This closing off of early female experience may be envisaged as analogous to the 'masculinization' of the gonads in the female embryo and closing of the penile tract. To put it another way, if he is able to retain a sense of containing an internalized image of his mother's good breast as well as the good penis of his father, through identification, his own penis may acquire 'reparative and creative qualities' Klein, , p.

However, where the father is himself unconsciously dissatisfied with maleness, cruelly competitive or exaggeratedly 'masculine,' or where the enveloping mother is contemptuous of or unable to facilitate the boy's identification with the father, primitive envy of female fecundity and primary identification with mother may prevail undiluted within the learned masculine identity of social ascription of sex beginning at birth. Conversely, the little girl, who also has to differentiate from her first love object the pre-oedipal all-embracing moon-mother, has nothing intrinsically different with which to liberate herself from dependency and boundary confusion at times fostered by the mother for her own emotional needs.

The Psychological Birth of the Human Infant Symbiosis and Individuation by Mahler Margaret S

Ideally, if she has been valued as a unique individual by a fulfilled mother confident in her own female 'personhood,' has access to a caring father-figure, and has a sense of her own inner creativity, she may have the secure base from which to develop her own female identity from within. However, generally, the little girl in patriarchal society has been faced with a daunting task: socially, she has been expected to identify with her domestically powerful yet publicly demeaned self-effacing mother, whom she senses is subtly despised for her very gender.

Her own gender often exposes her to double threats of devaluation and sexualization from males even within the 'emotional hothouse' Homey, of the family circle. Her father, a mother's son grown up, may impose on her his own expectations, the 'nurturing imperative' of his own male belief in entitlement to her unconditional devotion Westkott, Physically, she has no external organs to indicate her future female capacity to bear and suckle a baby.

Margaret Mahler - WikiVisually

Psychologically she may be plagued by having no evidence that her mother, retaliating for spoiling envy Klein, , has not robbed her daughter's body of its good contents and future fertility. Finally, the girl is also aware of lacking the psychosocially idealized organ that will enable her to placate or restore the avenging mother' Heimann, , p.

Little wonder then, that penis envy was found to prevail. Bem, S. Roth Walsh, Yale University Press.

The psychological birth of the human infant

Bollas, C. Chasseguet-Smirgel, J, Chasseguet-Smirgel, J. Psycho-Anal Chiland, C. Chodorow, N. Dorner, G. Edgcumbe, R. Fairbairn, W. Fast, I. Freud, S.

Margaret Mahler

Galenson, E. Blum ed.


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Greenberg, M. Cath, A. Ross, Eds. Greenson, R. Mahler, Margaret S. Published London : Maresfield Library, , c Language English View all editions Prev Next edition 9 of Author Mahler, Margaret S. Subjects Infants -- Growth. Infant psychology. Children, to 3 years Development Notes Children, to 3 years. Bibliography: p View online Borrow Buy Freely available Show 0 more links Set up My libraries How do I set up "My libraries"?

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Bibliography: p View online Borrow Buy Freely available Show 0 more links Set up My libraries How do I set up "My libraries"? Open to the public ; Victoria University Library.

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