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Margolis, D.P. (1995). The Photographer's Face: Freud and Lincoln. Mod. Psychoanal., 20(2):185-191.

(1995). Modern Psychoanalysis, 20(2):185-191

The Photographer's Face: Freud and Lincoln

Deborah P. Margolis, M.A.

Freud and Lincoln had in common a most uncommon behavioral trait: when presenting themselves to the world via the photographer's camera, their faces assumed an expression not generally familiar to family and friends. This “photographer's face,” as it was dubbed by Lincoln's family, was an instantaneous and involuntary reaction to the unwelcome, intrusive camera. And although the unconscious motivation for assuming such a face was not identical, the source, both in the case of Freud and of Lincoln, may be traced back to early childhood relationships, ultimately with the first object, the mother.

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