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Baggally, W. (1947). A Generalized Hedonic Theory of the Ego. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 28:179-197.

(1947). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 28:179-197

A Generalized Hedonic Theory of the Ego

W. Baggally

[This MS. and the one following it in this issue of the JOURNAL were sent by the Editors to an assessor who is acquainted with psycho-analysis and with mathematics. He passed them on for opinion to Dr. X who is a professional statistician and a pure mathematician, and to Dr. Y. Their reports are given below. In his report, Dr. X refers to Mr. Baggally's paper published in this JOURNAL, Vol. XXII, 1941.

Comment by Dr. X.

I agree with your comment about this paper being too long, but nevertheless I do think there is something worth while in it. The trouble seems to be that Mr. Baggally is aware that any attempt to treat psycho-analysis mathematically is pretty certain to meet with a good deal of mathematical ignorance. Consequently a large portion of the paper is devoted to defence against possible criticism (sugaring the pill) and to enligtening the ignorance. I was not impressed by the first part of the article in the I.J.P.-A., as I thought he was using the mathematics like an amateur, but as I read on I realized that the author had seen the possibilities and the dangers of the method and I became converted. I would be sorry to see these two MSS. miss publication for these reasons:

1. They do embody an original idea.

2. The theory is ingenious and is used quite plausibly to explain the examples given.

3. There may not be anything fruitful in these ideas—it may be a blind alley—but it ought at least to see the light of day first before being condemned.

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