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Friedman, S. Fisher, C. (1967). On the Presence of a Rhythmic, Diurnal, Oral Instinctual Drive Cycle in Man—A Preliminary Report. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 15:317-343.

(1967). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 15:317-343

On the Presence of a Rhythmic, Diurnal, Oral Instinctual Drive Cycle in Man—A Preliminary Report

Stanley Friedman, M.D. and Charles Fisher, M.D.

SUMMARY

1. It was hypothesized that the sleep-dream cycle should have a waking state counterpart characterized by a waxing and waning of oral activity in cycles similar in duration to those seen during sleep.

2. An a priori scoring system of oral activity was constructed. Ten research subjects were put into a relaxed and semi-isolated observational situation. Their oral activities were recorded and scored in consecutive 20-minute periods for durations of observation ranging from 52/3 to 8 hours.

3. The specific hypothesis, that oral activity should be cyclic in a range of 80-120 minutes, was supported statistically at the .025 level of confidence. The mean cycle duration was approximately 96 minutes.

4. The findings were discussed in the context of recent work done in the area of sleep and dreams. It was proposed that the concept of a sleep-dream cycle be amended to that of a 24-hour continuous cycle of drive accumulation and discharge.

5. It was observed that some subjects showed cyclic variations in reading activity and alertness that correlated with degree of oral activity. Other subjects showed little variation in these areas. These findings were discussed in terms of varying capacities to neutralize drive energy and to postpone its use in sublimated activities.

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