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Winnicott e-prints

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LOPARIC, Zeljko. Elements of Winnicott's Theory of Sexuality. Winnicott e-prints [online]. 2010, vol.5, n.1, pp. 1-36. ISSN 1679-432X.

After summarizing the differences between the Freudian and Winnicottian paradigms of psychoanalysis (section 1), the paper lays out the central ideas of Winnicott's theory of sexuality. The main theses defended are the following: (1) Winnicott redescribed sexuality as having two basic roots: the instinctive root (instincts understood as biological drives) and the identity root (the human interrelations that happen parallel to instinctive drives, as identifications of various sorts), (2) he rewrote the essential portions of traditional psychoanalytic theory dealing with this phenomena, and (3) in doing so, added essential elements to his new paradigm of psychoanalysis (section 2). Following a schematic presentation of Winnicott's conception of the instinctive and identity roots of sexuality (sections 6-9), as well as of some of its implications (section 10), I point out the corresponding sexual conflicts and the resulting disorders (in particular, I show that the instinctive root can bring about neuroses, whereas the identity root may produce dissociations with psychotic complications). The final sections (11-12) analyze an additional thesis by Winnicott, according to which both roots of human sexuality are entrenched in the common ground of the process of maturation, and that all conflicts of the sexual type are related to the deeper conflict between being and doing, conceived as a universal human problem inherent to that process.

Palavras-chave : sexuality; maturating; instinct; identification; being; doing.

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