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Sterba, R. (1944). Poe as Hypnotist: Arthur N. Foxe. Psa. Rev., XXVIII, 1941, pp. 520–525.. Psychoanal Q., 13:124.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Poe as Hypnotist: Arthur N. Foxe. Psa. Rev., XXVIII, 1941, pp. 520–525.

(1944). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 13:124

Poe as Hypnotist: Arthur N. Foxe. Psa. Rev., XXVIII, 1941, pp. 520–525.

Richard Sterba

In this short paper the author refers to the hypnotic experiments Edgar Allan Poe describes as having himself performed with people approaching death. Poe's theoretical conception of hypnosis appears to be rather mystical, whereas his clinical descriptions prove him to be a keen observer. His interest in hypnosis focused around the questions as to whether a dying person can be influenced by hypnosis and to what extent and for how long a period might the encroachment of death be arrested by the process of hypnosis. Poe describes two cases of pulmonary tuberculosis, in which some changes in the clinical manifestations are supposed to have been brought about by hypnosis. But it is uncertain whether his report is truth or fiction.

The author overlooked the opportunity of linking up Poe's interest in prolonging the life of persons dying from pulmonary tuberculosis with the death of his own beautiful young mother of tuberculosis, an experience which had the greatest influence on his life and his poetical productions.

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Article Citation

Sterba, R. (1944). Poe as Hypnotist. Psychoanal. Q., 13:124

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