Shari L. Thurer

Shari Thurer is a psychoanalytically trained psychologist practicing in Boston and an adjunct associate professor at Boston University. She is the author of The End of Gender: A Psychological Autopsy and The Myths of Motherhood: How Culture Reinvents the Good Mother.



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The End of Gender

The End of Gender: A Psychological Autopsy was released by Routledge on August 1, 2005.

Sex isn't what it used to be. All sorts of deviations have been "outed," but theories haven't caught up with the new social reality. The End of Gender: A Psychological Autopsy provides a cross-disciplinary debriefing. In it, psychoanalytic psychologist Shari Thurer draws on evidence from an encyclopedic array of sources–her own psychotherapy patients, biology, linguistics, anthropology, evolution, data-based social science, and history, as well as cultural theory, literature, art, and pop culture–to argue against the validity of rigid sex and gender categories. Thurer maintains that, by using queer theory in selective ways, psychoanalytic therapists may be able to make their brilliant insights about the unconscious relevant to the twenty-first century.

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Praise for The End of Gender

"Stunning and unique, this book will enlighten us all, the general reader as well as the clinician and academic. Dr. Thurer accomplishes the amazing feat of bringing together the work of two groups who need each other but who don't usually talk to each other. She brings us her clinician's understanding of sexual and gender issues along with an accessible account of the large body of post modern theory produced in recent decades. This is a model of the kind of work that should go on in many fields but rarely does."
  —Jean Baker Miller, author of Toward a New Psychology of Women

"How does one go about the impossible task of defining a subject that willfully resists classification? One might start by reading The End of Gender. Shari Thurer's wit, playfulness, accessible scholarship, and clinical sensitivity make reading this book a pleasure. In fact, if I were to teach a basic seminar on postmodern gender studies and queer theory, The End of Gender would certainly make my reading list."
  —Jack Drescher, author of Psychoanalytic Therapy and the Gay Man

"Shari Thurer has written an explosive and well-researched book which forces us to question our ritualized assumptions about sex and gender. Often inducing discomfort as she challenges our prejudices, Thurer has made a provocative?indeed volcanic contribution to debates on modern psychology."
  —Estela V. Welldon, author of Mother Madonna Whore

The Myths of Motherhood

The Myths of Motherhood: How Culture Reinvents the Good Mother was published by Houghton-Mifflin in 1994.

This groundbreaking and irreverent history of motherhood is worth a hundred advice books for any mother who's ever been made to feel guilty or frazzled by society's impossible expectations. Analyzing data from the psychoanalyst's couch to the hidden history of wet nursing, psychologist Shari L. Thurer wends her way from the Stone Age to the age of Hillary Rodham Clinton, painting a vivid, often frightening picture of life for mothers and children in a time when their roles were constructed by men. Along the way, she debunks myth after myth-exposing the not-so-golden ages of Classical Greece and the Italian Renaissance, and revealing the pervasive ideal of Dr. Spock's selfless, stay-at-home mother as the historical aberration it actually was. A work of impassioned scholarship and astonishing range, The Myths of Motherhood does nothing less than recast our conception of good mothering.

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Praise for The Myths of Motherhood

"A positive, sensible, and readable history directed to women in the throes of the experience... designed to reinforce Ms. Thurer's assertion that the modern mother cannot possibly do worse than her predecessors."
  —The New York Times Book Review

"A comprehensive treatment of motherhood has been long overdue, and this fits the bill, in spades."
  —Susan Brownmiller, author of Against Our Will and Femininity

Biography of Dr. Thurer

Shari Thurer is a psychologist practicing in Boston. She is a graduate of Vassar College and Boston University, where she received a doctorate and taught for twenty-one years. She is also a graduate of the Advanced Training Program in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute. Her debut book The Myths of Motherhood: How Culture Reinvents the Good Mother was translated into three languages. The End of Gender: A Psychological Autopsy is her second book. She lives in Boston and Dubai with her husband Robert Thurer.