The Bonds of Love

Jessica Benjamin, Author Pantheon Books $22.95 (304p) ISBN 978-0-394-55133-3
Benjamin, psychoanalyst, feminist theorist and member of the graduate faculty of the New School for Social Research, presents an intriguing analysis of the interplay between love and domination and of how ``domination is anchored in the hearts of the dominated.'' She builds on the foundation of Freud's Oedipal theory, critically revising it to include the female's struggle for independence. Acknowledging indebtedness to the seminal works of Simone de Beauvoir, Carol Gilligan, Nancy Chodorow, Evelyn Fox Keller and Dorothy Dinnerstein, the author sets out to demonstrate that ``what appears in Freudian thought as the psychological inevitability of domination can be traced to the social fact of woman's subjugation.'' The book's conclusion offers the hope that feminism can help end the cycle of domination by opening up ``a new possibility of mutual recognition between men and women.'' Intelligent, thoughtful and informed, this volume deserves a wide audience. Freud once asked, ``What do women want?'' and Benjamin goes a long way toward providing an answer. (August)
Reviewed on: 07/01/1988
Release date: 07/01/1988
Paperback - 318 pages - 978-0-394-75730-8
Open Ebook - 197 pages - 978-0-307-83330-3
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