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Erotic Anger

A User’s Manual

2001
Author:

Gérard Pommier
Translated by Catherine Liu
Foreword by Patricia Gherovici

Erotic Anger

A candid and disquieting account of the ways anger and sexual desire are intertwined.

In this first English translation of the best-known work of one of the world's leading psychoanalysts, Gérard Pommier brings together a number of case studies of his male and female patients whose sexual activities are bound in aggressive behavior, and suggests ways in which their anger might be understood and focused to a positive end. Why violence (verbal or physical) is so often a precondition for sexual enjoyment is what Pommier explores in this deeply enlightening and powerfully disturbing book.

A highly readable, enjoyable, and profound book by one of Lacan's closest associates. Pommier's shrewd probing of the paradoxes of desire will seduce and convince.

Jean-Michel Rabaté, University of Pennsylvania

In this first English translation of the best-known work of one of the world’s leading psychoanalysts, your friends and neighbors are on the couch. Gérard Pommier brings together a number of case studies of his male and female patients whose sexual activities are bound in aggressive behavior, and suggests ways in which their anger might be understood and focused to a positive end. Why violence (verbal or physical) is so often a precondition for sexual enjoyment is what Pommier explores in this deeply enlightening and powerfully disturbing book.

Erotic Anger: A User’s Manual is firmly grounded in the sexuality of real men and women. No, these are not tales told in the locker-room, recounting a stirring bit of foreplay that led to a particularly satisfying sexual encounter. Nor are the case studies presented by Pommier stories of simple problems or perfect cures. Rather, they are a return to the classic problems faced by Freud himself in his clinical practice—impotence, premature ejaculation, and compulsive masturbation-in which we see the rawness of fantasies and dreams uncensored.

In a voice that is ironic but elegant, aphoristic, cutting, and condensed, Pommier articulates the tortuous path of discovery on which his patients are embarked. Without moralizing or shirking the question of the ethical, his book brings us face to face with the intertwining of desire and aggression, and with the complex clinical, theoretical, and practical issues they involve.

Erotic Anger

Gérard Pommier is an analyst who currently teaches at the European University for Research. He is the author of more than a dozen books, including Naissance et renaissance de l’écriture, L’Ordre sexuel, and Louis du Néat: la melancolie d'Althusser. Also a novelist, he has published a number of works of fiction.

Catherine Liu is associate professor in the Department of Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota and author of Copying Machines (Minnesota, 2000).

Erotic Anger

American readers have a chance to find out what Gerard Pommier is about thanks to this fine translation of his book on the interplay of anger and sex. Elegantly presented, this is a thought-provoking, dramatic introduction to an ultimately optimistic thinker.

ForeWord

A highly readable, enjoyable, and profound book by one of Lacan's closest associates. Pommier's shrewd probing of the paradoxes of desire will seduce and convince.

Jean-Michel Rabaté, University of Pennsylvania