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June 15 , 2009

The Triumphant Victim

A Psychoanalytical Perspective on Sadomasochism and Perverse Thinking


This book examines the unrecognised prevalence of sadomasochism and perverse thinking in personal relationships as well as the public domain, and discusses the way it contributes to the culture of the victim.The first part traces the origins of perverse pathology and how it operates in obstructing emotional development and producing dysfunctional relationships. This is put in the context of hysteria, exhibitionism, voyeurism, and projective identification and is illustrated with clinical material drawn from the author's thirty years of psychoanalytical practice as well as experiences of couple- and family-therapy and educational consultations.The second half of the book examines current modes of thinking and belief systems with particular emphasis on tribal, basic-assumption mentality. The author examines the legacy of Cartesian dualism and the Enlightenment in contributing to the marginalization of feminine values in favour of negative, masculine control. Fundamentalist belief, the 'New Atheism' and feminism are subjected to particular scrutiny for evidence of perverse thinking leading to internal contradictions and the manifestation of these in the consulting room is illustrated with clinical material. In particular, State interference in family life, sexuality, and personal relationships is discussed and the resultant consequences both for erosion of civil liberties and interference in personal, emotional development. The final section consists of longer case histories.
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