The Sexes: Is Sex Neurotic?

"The psychoanalysts I've talked to are uncertain about my theory," says Robert Stoller, a psychoanalyst and professor at the U.C.L.A. School of Medicine. No wonder. Stoller has managed to come up with a far darker view of sex than Freud's. His theory, which he admits he has put forth with some "trepidation": except for a few rare individuals, human sexual excitement is usually generated by hostility. If his thinking is correct, Stoller writes in the Archives of General Psychiatry, "we must bear the idea that sexual pleasure in most humans depends on neurotic mechanisms. It is disappointing."

Like some other theorists on...

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