History of the Human Sciences 34 (1):120-147 (2021)

The historical forces of war and migration impacted heavily on the disciplinary locations, practitioners, and structures of sexology and psychoanalysis that had developed in the first decades of the 20th century. By the late 1940s, the US was fast becoming the world centre of each of these prominent fields within the modern human sciences. During these years, the work of Alfred C. Kinsey and his team became synonymous with a distinctly North American brand of empirical sex research. This article offers the most nuanced account to date of the shifting relationship between these two fields in the late 1940s to mid 1950s. It argues that this was more collaborative and mutually influential than previous historians have assumed, even as, following the publication of the first ‘Kinsey report’, tensions grew between the Indiana team and the conservative brand of psychoanalysis that by this stage dominated 1950s North American psychiatry. A keen sense of professional competitiveness accelerated the growing split between these two fields, as Kinsey’s team developed a distinctly modern, technologized brand of statistically oriented sexology that contrasted with the older patient case history, and assumed a very different approach to conservative analysts on ideas of homosexuality and ‘normal’ sexual behaviour. Yet this story of divergence is also tempered through consideration of other aspects of ‘situated knowledge’ such as religion and gender identity, even as accounts of cross-disciplinary competitiveness are expanded by contrasting Kinsey’s positions on psychoanalysis with those of contemporaries such as Harry Benjamin.
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DOI 10.1177/0952695120911597
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If P , Then What? Thinking in Cases.John Forrester - 1996 - History of the Human Sciences 9 (3):1-25.

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