1st Edition

Women and Psychoanalysis
The Collected Papers of Lucy Holmes

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after November 29, 2020
ISBN 9780367560874
November 29, 2020 Forthcoming by Routledge
272 Pages

USD $38.99

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Book Description

This remarkable collection charts the professional growth of one psychoanalyst from student to seasoned clinician to provide a guidebook for how psychoanalytic theory is conceptualized, created and tested in the analytic session. Specifically, the book traces the development of thinking on the place of women in psychoanalysis and how psychoanalysis has changed how it views and treats women.

Using the techniques of qualitative psychoanalytic research, Lucy Holmes presents new theories of female development grounded in drive theory and expands and enriches Freud’s phallocentric ideas about women. Validated by over thirty years of clinical experience with female patients, her work demonstrates how these theories affect women in analysis, in group, and in their personal lives. Later papers focus on the process of psychoanalysis itself, using the laboratory of the analytic session to study how talking changes the neurological structure of the brain; to reflect on the concept of "cure" in psychoanalysis; and finally to tackle the tenacity of the repetition compulsion.

Exploring topics across women’s lives, such as childbirth, anger, identity, death, humour, leadership, and madness, this unique collection of papers is ideal for practicing clinicians and psychoanalysis theorists.

Table of Contents

Part 1: Women 1. The Object Within: Childbirth as a Developmental Milestone (2000) 2. The Oppression of Childbirth (unpublished) 3. The Internal Triangle: New Theories of Female Development (2000) 4. Women in Group and Women’s Groups (2002) 5. Hell Hath No Fury: How Women Get Even (2004) 6. Masculine and Feminine: Differentiation and Integration (2009) 7. The Technique of Partial Identification: Waking Up to the World (2009) 8. Gender Dynamics in Group Therapy (2011) Part 2: Psychoanalysis 9. A Single Case Study of a Fascination with Death (2002) 10. Marking the Anniversary: Adolescents and the September 11th Healing Process (2005) 11. Humor and Psychoanalysis (2004) 12. Leadership and Psychoanalysis (2005) 13. Myth and Psychoanalysis (2005) 14. Becoming an Analyst: Learning to Live with Madness, Aggression and the Unknown (2006) 15. Wrestling with Destiny (2007) 16. Why Talking Cures (2008) 17. Beyond Cure (2012) 18. Reaching the Repetition Compulsion (2014) 19. The Analyst in Winter (2020)

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Lucy Holmes is a licensed psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City, where she is a faculty member and training analyst at the Center for Modern Psychoanalytic Studies and the New York Graduate School of Psychoanalysis. A former President of the Society for Modern Psychoanalysis, she lectures widely on female development and the technique of Modern Group analysis. Her previous book Wrestling with Destiny was published by Routledge in 2013.


This collection of papers, written over a period of twenty years, provide a vivid depiction of the psychoanalytic experience as a laboratory, where all sorts of questions about human development, the therapeutic value of talking, and the nature of cure can be answered by the analyst who really listens.

Vicki Semel, Executive Director

Academy of Clinical and Applied Psychoanalysis


Lucy Holmes’ papers on women pick up where Freud left off on femininity, throwing light on the "dark continent" of the female mind.

Lucie D. Grosvenor, LCSW

Executive Director Emerita

Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Study Center