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August 1967

Psychology of the Female: A New Look

Author Affiliations

Washington, DC
From the Department of Psychiatry, Georgetown University Medical School, Washington, DC.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1967;17(2):195-203. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1967.01730260067010

A MORE ADEQUATE understanding of the psychology of the female must include a thorough examination of the totality of her living as an adapting organism with its own assortment of biological capacities and limitations, as well as a being who must function in a world in which political and socioeconomic factors make demands upon her and influence her psychology. Old fashioned controversies which range around nurture vs nature, or instinct vs culture, can no longer occupy the forefront of such investigations. It is clear that it is not a question of eitheror, but of both.

Yet myths and outworn theories die slowly and reluctantly. The notion that an individual's character structure is bound to biology and that the psychology of the female is largely dependent upon the presence of a female reproductive system belongs to this class of one-sided theories which still domi