Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To zoom in or out on PEP-Web…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Are you having difficulty reading an article due its font size? In order to make the content on PEP-Web larger (zoom in), press Ctrl (on Windows) or ⌘Command (on the Mac) and the plus sign (+). Press Ctrl (on Windows) or ⌘Command (on the Mac) and the minus sign (-) to make the content smaller (zoom out). To go back to 100% size (normal size), press Ctrl (⌘Command on the Mac) + 0 (the number 0).

Another way on Windows: Hold the Ctrl key and scroll the mouse wheel up or down to zoom in and out (respectively) of the webpage. Laptop users may use two fingers and separate them or bring them together while pressing the mouse track pad.

Safari users: You can also improve the readability of you browser when using Safari, with the Reader Mode: Go to PEP-Web. Right-click the URL box and select Settings for This Website, or go to Safari > Settings for This Website. A large pop-up will appear underneath the URL box. Look for the header that reads, “When visiting this website.” If you want Reader mode to always work on this site, check the box for “Use Reader when available.”

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Simenauer, E. (1964). Notes on the Psycho-Analysis of Aesthetic Experience—With Special Reference to Ethological Considerations. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 45:431-436.

(1964). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 45:431-436

Notes on the Psycho-Analysis of Aesthetic Experience—With Special Reference to Ethological Considerations

Erich Simenauer

Psycho-analytic hypotheses on art which were originally based on transformations of instinctual drives were felt by Freud to be rather unsatisfactory. With the introduction of the theory of structure further proposals were made in terms of this new theoretical foundation (Eidelberg, 1945); (Kris, 1950). Their conceptual frame of reference was, however, already contained in the topical point of view, namely the alternate working of primary and secondary processes in artistic production (Simenauer, 1949), (1953). It is the intention of this paper to explore the possibilities which ethological studies might offer as a contribution to the development of aesthetic experience in man. If due allowance is made for the different frame of reference of ethology as compared with psycho-analysis, there should be no insurmountable obstacles to building bridges of mutual understanding (Weigert, 1956); (Bowlby, 1958), (1960); (Lampl-de Groot, 1959); (Brun, 1961).

As a starting-point let us choose three observations: (i) Out of the endless variety of phenomena surrounding us in nature it is the comparatively rare regular and symmetrical forms which strike us as beautiful; (ii) Out of the chaos of countless wave-lengths of white light only the pure colours, so rare in nature, primarily arouse in us aesthetic sensations; and (iii) of all possible modes of movement which we discern in animate and inanimate nature, only those that are rhythmic are felt as gratifying and beautiful. It is forever, as Lorenz (1942) put it, on the one hand the improbable, and on the other the simple events in nature which produce in us the sensation of the beautiful.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.