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Silber, A. (1981). A Tic, a Dream and the Primal Scene. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 62:259-269.

(1981). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 62:259-269

A Tic, a Dream and the Primal Scene

Austin Silber


The analysis of a tic and a dream stimulated by the primal scene is described. The tic and the dream represent efforts exerted by the patient's hard-pressed developing ego to master the effects of overstimulation. Urethral and faecal incontinence, constipation, faecal impaction and finally enema administration, detail the assault upon his sphincters. Fantasy formation, a sleep disturbance,

and a hypnoid state are other consequences related to this traumatic event.

The importance of childhood conceptions of bodily functioning and the integration of these notions with the fantasies fostered during phase specific developmental conflicts is described.

The re-evoked pre-oedipal and negative oedipal themes of adolescence are explicated and reworked. In this way the early traumatic events were refashioned during the course of the patient's analysis as his symptom and dream were progressively clarified and finally understood.

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