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Katan, A. (1951). The Role of "Displacement" in Agoraphobia. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 32:41-50.

(1951). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 32:41-50

The Role of "Displacement" in Agoraphobia

Anny Katan, M.D.

The present paper deals with a mechanism of defence which, I believe, plays an important part in a certain phase of normal personality development as well as in certain neuroses.

I should like to start from an analytic observation:

A girl of fourteen and a half years had been in analysis for three and a half years, though with frequent and lengthy intervals. She had been brought to the analyst because of symptoms of delinquency and because of bulimia; the treatment had taken a favourable course and the little patient had lost her symptoms. Puberty set in suddenly and vehemently; at fourteen the patient appeared physically fully developed. The analysis had revolved chiefly around the mother relation (the child was motherless). The greatest difficulties had been encountered in the discussion of masturbation. The patient had felt compelled to deny it flatly. Only during the last six months did she no longer deny it, without, however, being able fully to admit it; but she began to report dreams and masturbation fantasies that revealed clearly how intensively, at this period, she was concerned with her father. At the same time she had begun to go out with a boy, and soon she told me that they were in love with each other. Her relation to me was most satisfactory and very close; it was to be expected that the analysis would progress fast and be terminated soon. At this point, however, something unexpected happened: in spite of the excellent understanding between us, the patient informed me, with the greatest affability, that she had decided to break off the treatment.

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