Malvine Zalcberg

Women in Love — What Love Does to Them Publication date : March 28, 2013

A psychologist and psychoanalyst with doctorate in psychoanalysis, Malvine Zalcberg teaches at the Psychology Institute of Rio de Janeiro University, Brazil. She is the author of Qu’est-ce qu’une fille attend de sa mère? (2010).

Why does love seem to play a more significant role in a woman’s life than in a man’s? How can we explain the female passion for love? And isn’t psychoanalysis the best tool to delve into and answer such questions?
The idea of love as a sentiment dates back to medieval courtly love when a certain type of sophistication entered love relationships and women became objects of praise, as expressed, most notably, by the troubadours in writings that sublimated desire. Courtly love gave women a new status by transforming them into objects of desire. But for women, the corollary to their new status was the fear that they would stop being loved, which, according to Freud, is a constant of the female psyche. Love for women is based on the fear of loss. What then are the implications for a woman’s construction of herself and for her love relations with the Other? Female love, male desire: how do they complement each other? Examined in the light of some major concepts of Freudian psychoanalysis, this is a detailed study of female love that does not overlook male issues.

• The dialectics of love — an eternal yet no less topical subject.
• Desire, love, encounters, analysed from the female point of view.