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Tausk, V. (1969). Diagnostic Considerations Concerning the Symptomatology of the So-Called War Psychoses. Psychoanal Q., 38:382-404.

(1969). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 38:382-404

Diagnostic Considerations Concerning the Symptomatology of the So-Called War Psychoses

Victor Tausk, M.D.

For a time, particularly during the first half of the war, authors used the term 'war psychosis' quite indiscriminately. Some did so perhaps in the expectation that mental disturbances arising out of war experiences would show specific clinical characteristics; others used it without any particular theoretical premises and without any particular sense of responsibility. Recently I have had the impression that most authors have decided to use it merely to indicate the situation that was the immediate occasion of the illness. The fact that the war or a particular wartime event provides the content of the disturbed mental production is of course irrelevant in so far as such content is worked up into a mental disturbance of an already familiar type.

I was myself at first unable to form an opinion whether or not specific war psychoses existed. The special difficulties presented by the type of patient encountered in the Russian theater of war at first confronted me with cruder tasks, which had to be tackled before any diagnosis was possible.

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