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(1960). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. V, 1957: Observations on the Psychological Function of Music. Heinz Kohut. Pp. 389-407.. Psychoanal Q., 29:282-283.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. V, 1957: Observations on the Psychological Function of Music. Heinz Kohut. Pp. 389-407.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:282-283

Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. V, 1957: Observations on the Psychological Function of Music. Heinz Kohut. Pp. 389-407.

Kohut thinks that music involves the whole personality of the composer, performer, or listener. It is viewed as a source of libidinal satisfaction obtained in an aim-inhibited and displaced manner, and as a nonverbal medium that lies outside the field of most structural conflicts. Thus, it allows for emotional experience, ego mastery, and an expression of rules to which one submits. Primary and secondary musical processes (rhythm and tune) are discussed as they relate to the primary and secondary psychic processes. The author thinks that the deeper layers of the superego are related to a preverbal acoustic sphere which can explain the effects of some forms of music. A case report is included in which the patient utilized musical activity for the relief of pregenital, libidinal, and aggressive tensions. Kohut points out that music allows a controlled and limited regression which does not tax the secondary process in patients with ego weakness and thus has therapeutic possibilities in schizophrenic conditions. The controlled temporary regressions which music fosters tend to prevent or counteract uncontrolled

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chronic regressions and can be described as regression in the service of the ego, offering substitutive solutions of structural conflicts.

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Article Citation

(1960). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association. V, 1957. Psychoanal. Q., 29:282-283

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