Freud and his legacy

Brid Featherstone

in Contemporary fathering

Published by Policy Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9781861349880
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447301974 | DOI:
Freud and his legacy

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This chapter explores how fathers have been constructed within psychoanalytic thought. Freud, along with other early psychoanalysts saw the father as the central figure in the child's life and the castration complex as the major organiser for emotional growth. After World War Two, however, there was a shift in perspective within psychoanalysis, with an increased, if not almost exclusive, emphasis on the mother–child relationship. The chapter presents a brief account of the work of Melanie Klein, as it is relevant to understanding some of the feminist theories on mothering and fathering that have developed. It considers recent developments in ‘mainstream’ psychoanalysis, and some of the poststructuralist writers who have engaged with psychoanalysis.

Keywords: feminists; psychoanalytic thought; psychoanalysis; fathering; mothering; Melanie Klein

Chapter.  6074 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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