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Geyer, H.C. (1953). The Mystique of Light: A Glance at the Fine Arts Inspired by Dr. Edmund Bergler's the Writer and Psychoanalysis. Am. Imago, 10(3):207-228.

(1953). American Imago, 10(3):207-228

The Mystique of Light: A Glance at the Fine Arts Inspired by Dr. Edmund Bergler's the Writer and Psychoanalysis

Harold C. Geyer

No one can endure to be told that he is tied to his mother's apron strings. Crybaby! Sissy! Squealer! Yellow Back! — all the searing, deadly taunts by which a man's manhood may be impugned — are implicit in this homely reproach which can always be counted on to provoke a startling show of protest even from those most hopelessly tangled in the maternal strings.

Small wonder, then, that Dr. Edmund Bergler should have stirred up a hornets' nest when in his book THE WRITER AND PSYCHOANALYSIS he suggested that writers were in a very real sense tied to Mama's apron strings. With such provocation, it was only natural that literary critics should have trained their heaviest ironic guns on the venturesome doctor and that writers themselves should have viewed his impartial study as a gross violation of the immunity implied in Freud's assertion that, “Before the artist, analysis must lay down its weapons.” Nor need we be surprised that after the first instinctive repudiation of the apron string stigma, our critics and writers should have left Dr. Bergler's speculations as to the well springs of literary inspiration severely alone. Mere popularity, on the other hand, is no certain measure of a theory's worth. That is to be established only by the range and importance of the phenomena which it can satisfactorily explain. It may not be amiss, therefore, for one who has experimented with the application of Dr.

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