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July 26, 1987|ELENA BRUNET

Freud and Women, Lucy Freeman and Herbert S. Strean DSW (Continuum: $10.95). Freudian psychoanalytic theory has come under wide criticism for its bias against women. Sigmund Freud himself admitted his puzzlement with "the riddle of femininity," which "throughout history people have knocked their heads against." In "Freud and Women," the authors argue that Freud's "partial blindness" toward women stems from his own relationship with his mother: an unresolved Oedipal conflict. Thus Freud becomes the subject of the authors' psychoanalysis.

There is no doubt that Freud (whom his mother called "my golden Sigi") was his mother's favorite. But when younger brothers and sisters naturally replaced him as the central object of her attention, a typical first child's trauma ensued. As Freud himself describes it, the elder child "casts a jealous hatred upon the new baby and develops a grievance against the faithless mother." The authors propose that although Freud wrote these words, he never admitted that he was writing about himself and would subsequently play down a boy's aggressive feelings toward his mother in favor solely of his sexual feelings.

His unconscious hatred would be displaced toward other women. He demanded that his fiancee, Martha, withdraw all affection toward her own mother and brother, whom he felt were his enemies. Showing ambivalent feelings toward the female species, he even called his own daughter Anna (who founded the first training center for child psychoanalysts) "my favorite son." To make their case, the authors explore Freud's professional relationships with women, with his women patients, and here they quote quite liberally from Freud's writings, effectively tracing the emergence of "the talking cure," which would later be known as psychoanalysis. This book is an important addition on the evolution of early psychoanalytic theory.

Heroes and Hustlers, Hard Hats and Holy Men: Inside the New Israel, Ze'ev Chafets (Quill/Morrow: $7.95). Ze'ev Chafets (born William Chafets in Pontiac, Mich.) went to Israel to spend his junior year of college at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. When he arrived in the summer of 1967, Israel seemed "an almost mythological place inhabited by larger-than-life heroes." The mood in the nation was upbeat and confident, stemming from the victory of the Six Day War. Because he hadn't been reared in a Jewish environment, Chafets dedicated himself to the study of Hebrew as well as Jewish history and philosophy. By year's end, he had decided to become an Israeli citizen. Now, 20 years later, he writes an engaging account of this land of contradictions, not as a comprehensive history but rather his own description of the Israelis, "ordinary people living in unusual circumstances."

Chafets served in the army during the Yom Kippur War and worked as director of the information department for the Liberal Party. When Menachem Begin was elected prime minister in 1977 as the candidate for the Likud (a coalition between the Herut and Liberal parties), Chafets became director of the Government Press Office. Thus he writes about Israeli politics from the inside, but this book does not simply recount recent Israeli politics. It is a personal and insightful account of everyday life as it is led by contemporary Israelis of all social strata, from new immigrants to Holocaust survivors still bearing their blue tattoos. As such, it is an evocative portrait of the evolution of the Israeli state as it has come of age.

The Apache Indians, Frank C. Lockwood, foreword by Dan L. Thrapp (University of Nebraska: $9.95). First published in 1938, Frank Lockwood's "The Apache Indians" is a colorful, if somewhat dated, survey and history of the Apache tribes of the American Southwest. The book's emphasis is on the series of Apache wars, first with the Spanish and later with American pioneers and cavalry. As such, it is history written by the victors.

Thus Lockwood, professor of English at the University of Arizona, begins his account with the first documented sighting of Apache tribesmen by the Spanish military commander Castaneda in his report from the 1530s, "The Journey of Coronado" (which describes the Apaches as "the most barbarous people that have yet been seen"), and closes in 1909, when, after the final surrender of the Apache tribes to the Army, Geronimo dies at Ft. Sill, having spent the last years of his life being trotted out as a curiosity at the St. Louis World's Fair and at the Buffalo and Omaha expositions (although he was also invited to Teddy Roosevelt's inaugural procession). Relying heavily on primary sources and eyewitness accounts, the book is not so much a cultural history of Apache life but an overall chronicle of conflicts with a succession of invaders.

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