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2022-2023 Scientific Meetings

A Discussion with the Author on His Two Recent Books: Masculinity and Its Discontents and Ruptures in the American Psyche

Presenter: Michael J. Diamond, PhD 

October 25, 2022 7:00 - 9:00pm Central Time
 by Zoom 

Topic:  In the meeting, Dr. Diamond will present material from his two recent books, and we will be discussing the material with him.  The books are: 

Masculinity and Its Discontents: The Male Psyche and the Inherent Tensions of Maturing Manhood (London: Routledge, 2021)

In recent years, far more attention has been paid to the psychology of women than the psychology of men.  Serving a need, Diamond offers a psychoanalytic developmental perspective on male gender identity and the sense of maleness.  He provides an in-depth analysis of the development of the sense of masculinity and its evolution throughout a man’s life.  Diamond explores such themes as early infancy and child development, preoedipal factors, the oedipal complex, the influence of parenting, and the unconscious transmission of gendered factors by mothers and both biological and symbolic fathers.  He describes the role of inherent psychic “bigenderality” in the context of gender binaries and the inevitable gendered tensions and challenges.

Ruptures in the American Psyche: Containing Destructive Populism in Perilous Times (Oxfordshire, UK: Phoenix Publishing House, 2022)

Turning from the development of individual males, Diamond looks at larger social and cultural factors at play during the current, perilous times.  He describes destructive populism and group regression as exemplified by Trumpism.  Using both a psychoanalytic and a cultural lens, he analyzes the development of conspiratorial thinking and the dangerous fit between malignant leadership and group adherence to malignant, far-fetched narratives.  The book proposes approaches that have the potential of decreasing the potency of the nation’s destructive elements and managing inherent tensions.  The goal, argues Diamond, is to establish a healthy containing frame that strengthens the body politics’ nonpathological elements.

Presenter: Michael J. Diamond, PhD, in addition to the new books that he will be discussing at the meeting, wrote three other books, including My Father Before Me: How Fathers and Sons Influence Each Other Throughout Their Lives (New York: Norton, 2007), and numerous journal publications.  He is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst practicing in Los Angeles, where he is a Training & Supervising Analyst at the Los Angeles Institute for Psychoanalytic Studies. 


After attending this session, participants should be able to:

  1. recognize the nature of the male’s primordial vulnerability and the common defensive manifestations of its avoidance;
  2. question classical psychoanalytic understandings of the “masculine” and “feminine” and perceive more contemporary analytic contributions to gender;
  3. describe pathological dynamics in group relations, including aspects of group regression, malignant normality, psychotic functioning, cultism, thought control, and attacks on truth and objective reality. 


Admission is free. Registration is required in order to receive the zoom link.  Continuing Education Credits are offered exclusively to Society members in all membership categories and those intending to join.

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of American Psychoanalytic Association and the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute.  The American Psychoanalytic Association is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

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