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(1925). The Fighting Instinct. By Pierre Bovet. Translation by J. Y. T. Greig. Dodd, Mead & Company, New York, 1923. Pp. 252.The Things Men Fight For. By H. H. Powers. The Macmillan Company, New York, 1918. Pp. 382.. Psychoanal. Rev., 12(4):488-490.
(1925). Psychoanalytic Review, 12(4):488-490
The Fighting Instinct. By Pierre Bovet. Translation by J. Y. T. Greig. Dodd, Mead & Company, New York, 1923. Pp. 252.The Things Men Fight For. By H. H. Powers. The Macmillan Company, New York, 1918. Pp. 382.
“The Fighting Instinct” is a stimulating volume composed largely of material offered during the courses in moral psychology at the Jean-Jacques Rousseau Institute in Geneva, and the author has so comprehensively approached this subject of the defense reactions from such a variety of attitudes that the reader is early impressed with the tremendous amount of thought and investigation in its presentation.
From his personal investigation of children's quarrels and the causes of quarrels the author is led to agree with the older authority Groos that the great majority of quarrels are instigated for the pleasure it brings the aggressors, or“fighting is play to them,” and in connection with this formulation in its relations to the sexual instinct, the first few chapters of the book are given to the discussion and correlation of the views of several well known psychologists, biologists, and sociologists, among whom are Groos, Claparede, Brehm, and Havelock Ellis. He has combined and presented their ideas with his own modifications regarding play, teasing, cruelty, and other manifestations of the fighting instinct in a highly instructive manner.
The evolution of the fighting instinct, the alterations of this instinct, its manifestations in religion and in the selection of vocations and its economic aspects have been considered in the light of modern analytical psychology, a fact which is refreshing to those trained to think in terms of a dynamicunconscious.
The studies of Bovet have indicated that playing, teasing, fighting, expressions of cruelty, pleasure in witnessing combats, etc.
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