Debates on child abuse and trauma in psychoanalysis and feminism: The shift from non-trauma to trauma-based psychotherapy discourse

PhD Thesis

Papadima, Maria 2010. Debates on child abuse and trauma in psychoanalysis and feminism: The shift from non-trauma to trauma-based psychotherapy discourse. PhD Thesis University of East London School of Humanities and Social Sciences
AuthorsPapadima, Maria
TypePhD Thesis

The aim of this thesis is to explore the currently dominant discourse on child abuse and trauma as it has come to be understood in the last 30 years in British psychoanalysis.
This research mainly draws on a psychoanalytic framework, to show how a specific way of conceptualising trauma and child abuse has led to a shift from a non-trauma based psychoanalysis in the UK to a trauma-based one. In order to present the core elements of this discourse, I closely read psychoanalytic (British and French) and second-wave feminist texts that are relevant to this topic, against the background of the wider trauma paradigm and memory studies, which are also presented in the thesis. In the British psychoanalytic tradition in particular in attachment theory and contemporary Kleinianism this shift towards trauma has not yet been studied in the context of wider discussions that are occurring in cultural and social studies. Hence, the shift towards trauma-based psychoanalysis is routinely seen as a positive step forward, without examining it in the context of wider discussions about trauma and its meaning. The shift from a non-trauma based to a trauma-based psychoanalysis signifies a parallel
shift towards the desexualisation of psychoanalysis, which I also examine. The introduction of trauma as a central concept in psychoanalysis has meant a shift from a
discourse of desire to a discourse of needs, and this is one of this thesis' central findings.

KeywordsChild Abuse; Truama; British psychoanalysis
Publication dates
PrintJun 2010
Publication process dates
Deposited12 Sep 2013
Additional information

This thesis supplied via ROAR to UEL-registered users is protected by copyright and other intellectual property rights, and duplication of any part of the material is not permitted, except for your personal use for the purposes of non-commercial research and private study in electronic or print form. You must obtain permission from the copyright-holder for any other use. Electronic or print copies may not be offered, for sale or otherwise, to anyone. No quotation from the thesis may be published without proper acknowledgement.

Publisher's version
File Access Level
Registered users only
Permalink -

  • 216
    total views
  • 1
    total downloads
  • 4
    views this month
  • 0
    downloads this month

Export as