FEAR OF LIFE by

FEAR OF LIFE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This is the same book that neo-Reichian psychiatrist Alexander Lowen has been writing on and off for 20-odd years: lots of Oedipus, repression, suppression, and body release through murky hand maneuvers known as ""bioenergetics."" About the only aspect of the enterprise that will capture a popular audience is the dozens and dozens of cases dragged screaming from Lowen's files (since ""all my patients have a fear of castration""); but that's not enough to counteract the foot-dragging psychiatric mumbo-jumbo straight from academe. Since our central neurosis is sexual, Lowen attacks at that level: unlike Freud, he can't see repression of love for the opposite parent as a positive step toward a more appropriate love in the future; he thinks it leaves us looking for mommy or daddy in our marriage partners, so we have to get rid of it before we can choose freely. Lest anyone think be is making fabulous claims for therapy, Lowen lets it be known that he's been working on his own release for the last 35 years and hasn't quite made it yet. Well, good luck then, and let us know how it all turns out. Wearying.

Pub Date: Oct. 7th, 1980
Publisher: Macmillan