A Swallow Press Book

The Wounded Woman
Healing the Father-Daughter Relationship

By Linda Schierse Leonard

“Case histories, dream analyses and Jungian drawings enliven an important, original contribution to the psychology of women.”

Publishers Weekly

“Ms. Leonard has done something rare in combining her own experience with theory, and it is this combination that makes the book so profoundly moving and alive. Every woman will find insights here and the immense comfort of finding herself. I cannot recommend it too highly, a splendid addition to our growing need to come to terms with womanhood, and to rejoice in it.”

May Sarton

“The book contains a rich tapestry of stories, classical and contemporary, poems and dramas, myths and fairy tales, and dreams. Leonard has an inexhaustible treasure house of reflective material and dips into it on virtually every page to bring to life the strengths and weaknesses, the wounds and healings of fictional characters and real people…. I believe this book can be an important one for many readers, one that opens the door to healing.”

Psychological Perspectives

“Drawing on her own experience—and the experiences of her patients—Leonard explores the hurtful influence of a weak father, a tyrannical father, an abusive father. But she is not an angry or embittered woman and The Wounded Woman is not a vindictive book. Rather, it is a healing and loving book, a work of wisdom and insight, a book for both men and women, both fathers and daughters.”

Los Angeles Times

This book is an invaluable key to self-understanding. Using examples from her own life and the lives of her clients, as well as from dreams, fairy tales, myths, films, and literature, Linda Schierse Leonard, a Jungian analyst, exposes the wound of the spirit that both men and women of our culture bear—a wound that is grounded in a poor relationship between masculine and feminine principles.

Leonard speculates that when a father is wounded in his own psychological development, he is not able to give his daughter the care and guidance she needs. Inheriting this wound, she may find that her ability to express herself professionally, intellectually, sexually, and socially is impaired. On a broader scale, Leonard discusses how women compensate for cultural devaluation, resorting to passive submission (“the Eternal Girl”), or a defensive imitation of the masculine (“the Armored Amazon”).

The Wounded Woman shows that by understanding the father-daughter wound and working to transform it psychologically, it is possible to achieve a fruitful, caring relationship between men and women, between fathers and daughters, a relationship that honors both the mutuality and the uniqueness of the sexes.

In addition to The Wounded Woman, Linda Leonard is the author of several other best-selling books, including Witness to the Fire and Meeting the Madwoman. She has been in private practice as a Jungian analyst for over forty years and is a founding member of the Inter-Regional Society of Jungian Analysts. She currently resides in Boulder, Colorado.

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Related Subjects

Psychology · Gender Studies · Women’s Studies



Retail price: $19.95, T.
Release date: May 2014
206 pages · 5½ × 8½ in.
Rights: World


Retail price: $29.95, S.
Release date: Jan. 1982
206 pages · 5½ × 8½ in.
Rights: World


Release date: Jan. 1982
≅ 206 pages
Rights: World

Additional Praise for The Wounded Woman

“(Leonard) draws upon a wealth of illustrative material from her own life experience, her patients, fairy tales, myths, literature, and films. She writes well and integrates theory and practice in a manner that should make her study accessible to an audience of quite diverse backgrounds and interests.”

Library Journal

“A revelation for men, an inspiration for women, it offers all of us the chance to break the bitter cycle.”

Alan Rinzler, San Francisco Chronicle

“In her practice as an analyst…(Linda Leonard) has heard the stories of other ‘wounded women‘ and she uses their experiences as well as her own to identify the behavior patterns which characterize women who have suffered from inadequate fathering, both personally and culturally…. Because she writes honestly out of her own painful experience and reflection on what she has learned, Linda Leonard is a trustworthy guide.”

Women’s Voices

“This is a good book, a strong book.… Speaks with the beauty and power of the feminine spirit.”

Patricia Harleman, Journal of Women and Therapy

The Wounded Woman is a poignant, gentle book which examines the damaged relationship between women and their fathers both at the personal level and at the cultural level…The reader with a mind that resonates to the ideas of C. G. Jung, to poetry, to possibility, to sorrow, to hope will remain with this book to the redemptive ending.”

Bernardine A. Abbott, Journal of Christian Healing

“A remarkable story because of the author's courage and honesty and expertise. It is a first-hand account of a woman finding her agonizing way through a masculine dominated culture to her own true female self.”

Jane Hollister Wheelwright, author of Death of a Woman

“In writing The Wounded Woman, Linda Leonard has spoken courageously from the depth of her experience and in so doing offered us a model of feminine authority, wisdom and spirit that is compelling.”

The San Francisco Jung Institute Library Journal