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Kloth, E. (1956). Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society. Psychoanal Q., 25:306-307.

(1956). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 25:306-307

Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society

Edward Kloth

October 11, 1955. MOTOR PATTERNS IN INFANTS, GESTURES, AND GENITAL BEHAVIOR, WITH A NOTE ON FETISHISM. Bela Mittelmann, M.D.

The motor urge (or drive) is the dominant form of mastery and source of pleasure in the second year of life, which is considered to be a motor phase of ego and libido development. Evidence is presented in films and in case presentations to show that characteristic motor patterns are observable in some infants which reveal individual variations and which appear to be congenital, though later modified by environmental factors. There appear to be sexual differences between males and females. Motor patterns observed during joyous excitement differ from those which occur during external restraint. As the infant explores its body there is an affective investment of the part of the body, or article of clothing (exploratory part-object), with concurrent manifestations in motor activity.

When a purposeful motor pattern is frustrated externally, an autoerotic pattern may be substituted for it. The pathological implications of these motor patterns are illustrated by examples of regressive motor patterns manifested in situations of strong emotion. The more primitive pattern may occur with a mood that is predominantly the same or the opposite of the mood with which the pattern was originally associated. Evidence is presented that infantile affectomotor patterns become integrated into the actions and gestures of adults.

The case of a five-year-old boy exhibiting foot fetishism, prolonged masturbation, fears, and submissive behavior is presented in detail.

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