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Jelliffe, S.E. (1926). British Journal of Psychology—Medical Section. Psychoanal. Rev., 13(1):106-123.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: British Journal of Psychology—Medical Section

(1926). Psychoanalytic Review, 13(1):106-123

Abstracts

British Journal of Psychology—Medical Section1

Smith Ely Jelliffe, M.D.

(Vol. I, No. 1, Oct. 1920)

1.   JANET, PIERRE. Psychological Tension, Its Degrees and Oscillations. 1-16.

2.   BROWN, WM. Symposium. Revival of Emotional Memories and Its Therapeutic Value.

3.   LONG, CONSTANCE. Psychological Adaptation.

4.   JONES, E. Recent Advances in Psychoanalysis

5.   READ, C. S. Pathogenesis of Epilepsy.

6.   Reviews; Abstracts; Proceedings of British Psychological Society.

1. JANET, P. Psychological Tension.—Janet here repeats with but little change his 1915 viewpoints about psychological tension in the first of three lectures given before the University of London. With his usual facile grace of presentation he speaks of the need of an objective psychology—psychobiology as Adolf Meyer has long termed it. Psychological tension is an abstraction for Janet. It is a force that makes people do things. There Is no analytical material in this very diffuse and very general paper.

2. BROWN, W., MYERS, C, MCDOUGALL, W.; Symposium on Revival of Emotional Memories in Therapy.—This discussion, before the British Psychological Association of 1920, seems to have been stimulated because of the psychoanalytic insistence on the significance of repression, which the analytical school is aware had an excellent general expression by Aristotle when he discussed emotional catharsis through the drama— Tragedy, Comedy.

The shell shocked soldiers forced physicians to come out of their farcical mediaeval and archaic humoralistic ideas of pathology, and did really wake up—partly at least—many English doctors. This discussion of Freud's earlier term (abreaction) for older conceptions rarely gets to

—————————————

1 This journal, heretofore an appendage of the British Journal of Psychology, came into separate definite form October 20, 1920, under the Editorship of T. W. Mitchell. Inasmuch as most of its material is“psychoanalytic” the editors have decided to add it to the list of regularly abstracted journals. It is a quarterly and is published by the Cambridge University Press.

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grips with the actual dynamic situation and is quite oblivious of Freud's modifications of the original ideas. Myers makes an amusing statement about his 1914 paper as being among the first to call attention to the importance of attacking the amnesia of these neurotic patients. One wonders if he ever knew of Breuer's—“talking out cure” (1893)— Rabelais, centuries earlier“laughing cures,” and similar abreactions towards the precise mechanisms of whose understanding Freud has reduced generalities down to really scientific causalities. McDougall's contribution is quite significant of a method of attributing alien ideas to an opponent and then demolishing them.“Reliving an emotion” in Freud's psychology is quite a different thing than McDougall's statement of it. McDougall's statement re a“quantum” of energy attached to an idea is quite unfamiliar in the dynamics of the libido. The discussion is of interest as illustrative of an upper level treatment of the abreaction problem.

3. LONG, CONSTANCE. Psychological Adaptation.—An excellent statement of Jung's objective and subjective significance of the dream makes up the opening of this paper. Causal interpretation deals with the objective memory elements and thus reconstructs the past associative development of the patient. Subjective interpretation relates the dream elements to the feelings of the dreamer. All the roles are special attributes of the dreamer. This is Silberer's“functional symbolism.” Jung's accentuation of the projicient value of the dream—teleological function—in solving actual problems is here emphasized. Both attitudes, the analytic and the synthetic, are valuable. The individual and society must both be taken into consideration in this frame and“adaptation” is necessary for everybody. Repression is the mechanism for adjusting counterclaims. The battle is fought out in the unconscious and wheel… discomfort or disease appear further entail considerations of inheritance or special environmental factors. The complex is the thing to be revealed in the unconscious. Feeling tone and phantasies are associated and release comes with the opening of new adjustments. Abreaction is only a foreconscious situation. It helps in the formation of the transference. A 15th century Persian poet is quoted apropos of the abreaction situation. The need for adaptation to inner as well as to outer realities is insisted upon. Dreams and phantasies are not only objects of repression but are schemes and plans. From this attitude of mind Jung thus values the manifest content of the dream. The Vienna school is misquoted as holding that the unconscious is” the all round inferior mind” and not” the creative mind” as well—a view much reiterated by many who show their lack of acquaintance of Freud's views by quoting it. Dr. Long now takes up the question of“types.” “Men are born into a type just as they are born into a family” is her dogmatic utterance. She then discusses some of Jung's

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well known views about the introverted and extraverted types, and his intuitive, sensational and other formulations from this“type” aspect.

4. JONES, E. Recent Advances in Psychoanalysis.—This is not a general review. It is confined to a few topics. Ferenczi's“Active therapy” is first discussed. Chief stress is laid upon the keeping up the state of tension which not infrequently is relaxed through slight betterment in therapy or coming from ameliorating environmental modifications. Thus arises the“abstinenceprinciple of Freud, and the“prohibitions” and other“restrictions” advocated by Ferenczi to aid in getting unconscious material into the analysis. Freud's contributions to technique are also alluded to, also his study of an infantile neurosis and his neurotic types of falling ill. Under the head of Characterology Jones refers to Freud's 1908 study on anal determiners of character and also his own contribution to the same subject. Hate and anal erotism are clearly allocated and Ferenczi's study on oral—cannibalistic pregenital organization phases, touched upon. Freud's contribution to character reaction types, is well elucidated. Type 1, Richard III variety, as those wishing special privileges because of infantile injustices; Macbeth and Rosmersholm, type 2—those broken by success; and type 3, the“criminal from guilty conscience.” They are not guilty because doing the forbidden thing, but rather do the forbidden in order to experience the acquiring of the sense of guilt. Freud's contributions to the psychology of love and to the taboo of virginity are also taken up.

Contributions to the very important problem of Narcissism are then dwelt upon. This intermediary stage between autoerotic and object love was a later conception of Freud's—and in its latest intensive study opens up very important ground for the understanding of homosexual inversion and perversion, hypochondria, paraphrenia, organic disease and the general psychopathology of the love impulse. Jones very clearly traces a number of important steps in the evolution of analytic research on narcissism. Abraham's 1908 paper on the return of the libido to the self in paraphrenia was an important contribution. Object libido becomes reconverted into ego libido and will not move away from the patient's phantasies. Many bizarre symptoms belong to recovery efforts. Ferenczi's paper on the“pathoneuroses” is next considered. Narcissism as seen in falling in love is seen in four settings.

(a)  Fall in love with what one is oneself.

(b)  Fall in love with what one was.

(c)  Fall in loye with what one would like to be (ideal).

(d)  Fall in love with what was once a part of one's self.

Freud's study of love is very penetrating, especially as it bears on the narcissism of parents with relation to their children.

Finally Jones takes up the recent contributions to Metapsychology,

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i.e., a psychology which regards every mental process from a dynamic, topographical and economical point of view. The dynamics infusing a phenomenon has always interested Freud more than its meaning. By topographical interest he means the depth of the process in conscious, preconscious or unconscious mental stratifications, and by economical he refers to the general notion of parsimony of effort on the part of psychical dynamics to get the best results with the least effort. Freud has written five essays dealing respectively with instinct, repression, the unconscious, dream theory, and the dynamics of melancholia. Jones has given an excellent epitome of these five essays.

5. READ, C. STANFORD. The Pathogenesis of Epilepsy.—This is a sympathetic review of the work of L. Pierce Clark upon epilepsy so well known here. Thirteen papers are referred to.

(Vol. I, No. 2, Jan. 1921)

1.   MOURGUE, R. Disorders of Symbolic Thinking due to Local Lesions of the Brain. 97-124.

2.   NICOLL, MAURICE. An Outline of the Idea of Rebirth in Dreams. 125-134.

3.   YOUNG, JAMES. Study of Severe Case of Obsessional Neurosis. 135-143.

4.   JANET, P. Psychological Tension. 144-164.

5.   Critical Note on RIVERS': Instinct and Unconscious. Book Reviews and an abridged translation of REIK, T.: Oedipus and the Sphinx, 181-194 from Imago. Vol. VI, pt. 2.

1. MOURGUE, R. Disorders of Symbolic Thinking and Brain Disease. This article in French is an excellent resume particularly of the work of Head upon Aphasia (Brain 1920) especially as Mourgue would develop a functional psychology for language and thinking rather than the older type of structural psychology. He thus draws upon the work particularly of Jackson, v. Monakow, Bergson and Pick in this excellent review. Jackson's pregnant thought that the loss in aphasia is not the real lesion, but only represents a subtraction from a whole group and hence a reduction to a set of lower functional groups is here amply illustrated, particularly as the auto—observation of Saloz has justified this situation. (See Naville's excellent study of this case. Arch, de Psychol. 1918% Ford's auto—observations (Jour. f. P. u. N. 1915) are also quoted. Forel uses Semon's terminology—commenting on the inability of“ecphoria of the engrammes” in his aphasia.

In discussing Head's ideas of“symbolic thinking” rather than of language Mourgue shows that Head's conceptions are more in line with

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modern linguistic analysis than the very structurally simplistic ideas of“intelligence.” Thus he maintains that Moutier's Thesis is defective from the functional point of view;“language and thinking” are not identical concepts. Words are highly complicated symbolic abstractions with many valencies interwoven into a compact evocation. F. de Saus—sure has shown this (1916). Decomposition of parts of the abstraction (infra—structure, de Saussure) modifies the functional capacity of the symbol (word or phrase). The result is not to be seen in the word defect (language) alone. The difficulties are far more recondite and subtle than simply a loss of intelligence—i.e., ability to use words.

Although not a contribution to psychoanalysis this interesting review is of moment.

2. NICOLL, M. Rebirth in Dreams.—The idea of rebirth is universal. It is constantly met with in religious symbolizations and hence its frequent reappearance in dreams. The rebirth theme is the very basis of our psychical life, Nicoll remarks. Death and resurrection are constantly appearing dynamic situations. The psyche cannot be static without suffering. This is an inner necessity however glossed. We are constantly under the necessity for breaking with the past and advancing into the future (vide Bergson). The dream as a dynamic expression is constantly symbolizing these phases and Nicoll insists on the myth—like parallels of various growth phases. Thus a psychological menopause may precede a biological one in women and is characterized by definite dream symbolizations, just as there are definite puberty stage dream symbolizations. These dreams of a psychological menopause Nicoll says involve the understanding and acceptance, or refusal of a new attitude; which if accepted leads to an easier life. He speaks of certain temporal epochs; 33-37 in men where cross road symbolizations are paralleled by myth formations indicative of the struggles; 28 in women—unmarried particularly—is another critical period. He gives no definite examples. He now quotes Jung—whom he has been quoting practically from the beginning. Rebirth is shown as movements towards or into the mother, according to Jung. As an incest wish this is understandable but it is not sufficient, unless the reductive method interpretation“as wish for healing” is not coupled therewith. Rituals contain much illustrative material. Nicoll here says whenever rebirth symbolizations are found, major or minor crises are taking place in the life of the patient. He gives a dream as illustrative of a rebirth dreamHe dreamt that he was on a steamer with a crowd of people. He suddenly dived over the side of the steamer and plunged into the sea. As he went down the water became warmer and warmer. At length he turned and began to come up. He reached the surface, almost bumping his head against a little empty boat. There was no steamer, but only a little boat. Also—In the case of a

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woman approaching the climacteric she finds in her dream that she has to go somewhere she has never been before. She is taken to this place and discovers it to be a kind of Turkish bath. She is taken inside and placed in a small room not much larger than herself. The door is closed and the steamy heat gradually begins to increase. At the same time she observes that at the top of this small room there is a brilliant light. She feels she cannot stand the atmosphere and realizes suddenly that she has taken in her fur coat with her, although she was warned not to do so. She escapes. This latter is one of the psychological menopause type, Nicoll says.“She cannot yet stand the process of rebirth; a sacrifice of the instinctual (fur coat) in favor of the intuitional (the brilliance) is the underlying theme.” Nicoll gives other more complicated dreams which are all discussed in terms of various mythologies. They are too detailed to permit of abstraction. They are excellent examples of the general features of the Jung following.

3. YOUNG, JAMES. Obsessional Neurosis.— Analysis of a thirty—three—year—old man who developed obsessional thinking at nineteen when he became engaged.“If he returned a book borrowed from her he doubted if he had returned it.” After three years of this doubting on many points the engagement ceased. Hay fever developed the next and later summers. The obsessional ideas augmented and his parents had to settle everything for him as his activities became more and more circumscribed. He was at first exempted as neurasthenic, then had 18 months in Mesopotamia, India and finally had a complete obsessional collapse. A striking symptom was the obsessive idea of passing water at all inconvenient times. If free to gratify his wish at any moment there was no compulsion. But once in the theater, or club, or church, or railway, he must urinate. Also his ideas,“he must be a success” —this was his father's philosophy. This competitive spirit entered into everything. When adequate to a situation the compulsion vanished. If a rappert was established all was O. K.—if not he had to urinate. If on a railway he could gain a toilet, it mattered little, but if not, the desire mounted until it became orgasmic and even entered into a phase of seminal ejaculation. The bladder was not emptied incontinently at any time. Urination here was the “will to power.” Anticipation was evident, and the hurry is only another aspect of the “will to dominate.” Naturally it frustrates itself—as the dream cited indicates. “I am with the army. We are marching and the leading section persists in going too quickly. Eventually they are much ahead of the remainder of the column.” He thus “keeps his hand on the throttle of the future and so dominates an event by anticipating it” Jung deals with this situation as“undifferentiated co—function in the unconscious” —hence as Young would call it” inferior function.” This the author correlates with the hard materialistic family situation. Fire

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and brimstone religion give rise to innumerable limiting taboos and prohibitions. His “feeling” relationships are inferior. He distrusts his feelings. He calculates rather than feels his way into life. He tries to adapt by means of thought. He must preserve his own integrity. He cannot stand pain. He has not left the parents geographically or topographically. He has learned a prudent rationalism from his father which, backed by an instinctive parent imago fixation, prevents his infantile sexuality from growing up. Thus he stays in autoerotism. In therapy how can this mass of inferior feeling be canalized and be made to function. Analysis soon showed his father fixation and his sexuality inferiority and diminished the obsessional system. Young now goes on and shows rather sharply certain of the variations of a so—called Freudian analysis from a reductive analysis in the Jung sense.

“'I am playing the piano. It seems to be an unusually large one and I can play faster, better and more freely than ever beforesuch lightning movements.

“Associating with piano, he said that he was very fond of playing it, that he had often had recourse to it when hard pressed by obsessions, and that it called forth more feeling in him than many human relations— the piano was larger than usual both in height and compass.

“Now here is the idea of greater compass—greater range combined with greater freedom and dexterity. This is exactly what is required psychologically. The unconscious representation of the potentiality for canalization or differentiation of the crude psychological mass is what, the author calls the inferior function.”

He is aware that a Freudian interpretation of this dream would reduce it to a repressed masturbation complex. This is inevitable, as the Freudian system is based on the theory of sexual determinism. He is far from minimizing the part played by sexuality in this case.“I shall emphasize it later. But it must be pointed out that in the course of analysis masturbation had ceased to be an acute problem. For that reason perhaps the practice had almost ceased. Therefore, as there was no repression on which the genesis of the dream depends according to the Freudian system, I submit that the significance of this dream does not refer to the sexual history and therefore to the past, but to the psychological potentiality, and so to the future. In this connection it may be interesting to quote from a document which the patient brought about this time. Under the heading ‘Particular Results of Analysis,’ two extracts are as follows:

“'Whilst walking along Oxford Street yesterday I experienced a feeling as though somewhere inside my brain a new hope were dawning. There was also a physical sensation as though about one square inch of material lifted. I felt this in the left side of my head.

“'During the same afternoon I had a picture—a very live one—of a

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thin snake stretching from the neck to the forehead under the skin. A lid opened. The head appeared and thin sunlight seemed to stream in.'

“These would appear to be insane phantasies, but I think they have validity as prognostic signs at that time. The first is an unconscious picture of the lifting of the repression. The second embodies a motif which is universal in mythology—instinctive libido under the symbol of the snake becoming active and moving towards the surface. It probably signifies that amount of energy which through analysis has been released from an unsuitable form.”

“Let us now turn to the etiology of the oosessions. ‘Freud came to the conclusion that obsessive processes represent the return in a distorted guise, of self—reproaches dating from childhood and buried since then until the outbreak of the malady. They always refer to active sexual performances r tendencies.' I quote from Dr. Ernest Jones' book, Treatment of the Neuroses. This theory of origin holds good in this case. By analysis those obsessions with a manifest sexual content were easily traced back to a specific or a typical episode of adolescent sexual life. For example, he had an obsessive fear that any woman who touched a letter which he had written after an act of masturbation would become pregnant. This made him destroy many letters from time to time. It was traced back to an early sexual misadventure which had caused him great suffering and anxiety. Many other obsessive fears, such as his being the cause of pregnancy or of being the means of transmitting disease in various ways to others, were found to have their origin in past sexual incidents.

“But the obsessions spread from the purely sexual field to a much wider field of human relations. For instance, on his way home from India he bargained with an Egyptian boy about some coins. A British comrade remarked that he was rather hard or unfair to the boy. At the same time an older Egyptian beat the boy for making such a noise. The latter ran away. A railway was near, the track of which was used by pedestrians. The patient feared that the boy might be killed by a train and that he would be responsible. This gave rise to one of the worst and most enduring obsessions he ever had. It lasted for about six months.

“What is it that determines this enlargement of the obsessive field beyond the purely sexual? According to the Freudian teaching these obsessions are the results of displacement of affect on to nonsexual themes. It follows that if all sexual repressions are brought into consciousness there should be no more obsessions of any kind whatsoever. Now in this case I think that after six months of analysis all sexual repressions had been brought into consciousness. Yet obsessions still occurred, particularly those of self—reproach, although not with such overpowering force. If he borrowed money and was not able to pay it

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back because the lender was out of reach, he became quite distressed. It was as if he felt himself at the mercy of the world because he was a borrower. It was not consistent with his conscious estimate of himself as an upright citizen. His infantile power system kicked and screamed because his integrity was in danger. His rationalism cannot accept a situation which is incomplete or dubious. It is irrational for him and the principle which is common to all the obsessional ideas, whether sexual or not, is the irrational. From this point of view the obsession may be said to be due to the fact that the superior function (the rational) gets its teeth into the irrational event or possibility and will not let go. There comes a deadlock in the psyche, which monopolizes the whole of consciousness. The question may now be asked, Does it help the patient to attribute the meticulous accuracy, the tyrannical scrupulosity of the last mentioned obsession to a mechanism of sexual repression? Will such knowledge in itself suffice to release the patient from the power of the obsession? I think not. I think that this accuracy or scrupulosity with regard to money to which I have just referred is something important in itself. It is due to that attitude which embodied the crude parental philosophy. I do not think that to reduce this characteristic down to a repressed infantile anal eroticism helps to rob it of its power. I think the redemption from the distressing psychological impasse which so often occurs is through the differentiation of the inferior function of feeling. This can only be brought about by a constructive technique directed to broadening the patient's outlook and philosophy of life, which we have seen to be so limited. The differentiation of feeling proceeds hand in hand with the broadening of the basis of personality. The possibility of this broadening was indicated in the dream of the piano and the process has proceeded steadily and I think satisfactorily. His obsessions now take no organic form whatever and the intensity of the purely ideational ones is greatly diminished. He is able on many— occasions to feel that what he fears may happen, has every right to happen, must have happened to other people, and so on. When he really feels this the obsession loses its force. It is significant that the unconscious has been much occupied with religion, particularly with oriental forms, the symbols being often reminiscent of his experiences in India. A short time ago he dreamt the following:

“'I was in a strange house. I heard a great noise, shouting and the clanging of a bell. A big strong man wished to come in. He called out,“I declare unto you a new religion. I can quiet you and change your present mode of life.” But I was afraid of him and he passed away.'

“This dream speaks for itself. It may be that if the patient can incorporate the feeling values which are symbolized by the man of the dream he will be delivered from the tyranny of the superior function, and so cease to suffer from that God—Almightiness which has crippled his life.”

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4. JANET, P. Hierarchy of Tendencies.—Second lecture on psychological tension in French, which contains nothing of psychoanalytic interest.

(Vol. I, Parts 3 and 4, July, 1921)

1.   JANET, PIERRE. La Tension Psychologique. 209-224.

2.   FLUGEL, J. C. On the Biological Basis of Sexual Repression and Its Sociological Significance. 225-280.

3.   SMITH, W. WHATELY. Some Properties of Complex Indicators. 281-296.

4.   SMITH, W. WHATELY. Relation Between Complex Indicators and the Form of the Association. 297-315.

5.   CULPIN, MILLAIS. Problem of the Neurasthenic Pensioner. 316-326.

6.   MITCHELL, T. W. Psychology and the Unconscious. 327-341.

7.   Critical Abstract; Reviews; Current Literature.

1. JANET, P. Oscillations of the Mental Level.—This is the third lecture and contains much interesting speculation upon a metaphysical abstraction, i.e., the“mental level.” Just what he means by a“mental level” and as defined in terms of“psychological tension” when he speaks of the various“niveaus” of the idiot, imbecile, debile, egoist, paranoid, scientist, genius, is far from clear—since intelligence and other factors are more or less thrown pell mell into the weighing and no unitary conceptions emerge.

2. FLUGEL, J. C. Biological Basis of Sexual Repression and Sociological Significance.—This is a lengthy and very valuable contribution to this most important of the many fundamental questions which have come out of psychoanalytic research.

The author's program is as follows:

I.   Introduction. The antagonism between Individuation and Genesis.

II.  The ultimate biological nature of the antagonism between Individuation and Genesis.

III. The nature of the biological forces favoring Individuation and Genesis respectively.

IV.  The psychological correlates and consequences of the biological tendencies to Individuation and Genesis.

V.   The nature of the psychological difficulties involved in the realization of the pressure of population upon the means of subsistence. Sociological consequences of these difficulties. VI. The probable sociological and psychological consequences of a more general realization of the nature and significance of the antagonism between Individuation and Genesis.

VI.  Summary.

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As to section one, Flugel comments first oh Freud's contribution to the outlines of the evolution of the sexual instinct and then speaks of the need for a similar thorough outlining of the main issues of the ego trends (instinct of self—preservation, or Individuation, as he, following Spencer, calls it).

The psychic dichotomy (ego trends and libido trends) has long been adopted by Freud in conformity to well—established biological principle; rather from analytic findings themselves. As to the dynamics of repression and its biological significance, Flugel would draw attention to the existence of a necessary biological antagonism between the full development of the individual and the exercise of his procreative powers— between Individuation and Genesis, to use Herbert Spencer's terms, and to develop Spencer's ideas in his Principles of Biology. This antagonism is of such a kind that (other things equal) the energy devoted to the life activities of the individual vary inversely with the energy devoted to the production of new individuals. Sexual repression is one of the necessary biological results of this conflict, and the psychoanalytic formulation, Ego Trends vs. Libido, should have some contributions on the biological side. Spencer's well known but mostly forgotten material is brought forth, as well as the general Darwinian theories and the ideas of Malthus, Drysdale, and others.

Individuation and genesis have always been in conflict [as well as allies.—J.] since the beginning of life, and too much of the former has always invited disaster—see the persistence of million—year—old unicellular forms as compared with excessive individuation, dinosaurs and the like— whereas there has also been an increasing capacity for Individuation at the expense of the libido, but chiefly through its repression. Genesis is always first, however, and self—preservation is not the first law of nature [in spite of man's rationalizations and humbug moralities.—J.]. Several features of the interaction of these trends are discussed by Flugel.

In section IV the author takes up the psychological counterpart of this biological interplay and accentuates the mechanism of sublimation as the balancing factor in the equation. This is Freud's well known view. Displacement of libido and economics are but two aspects of the same problem. Sexual tendencies and work interests are always locking horns, and since Genesis is the oldest“habit,” has to stand the greatest stress and is a strong factor in natural selection making for persistence is advantageously repressed, i.e., sublimated, but for destruction if only coming through with symptom formation (bodily, mental, or social symptom formation is meant). Here is where psychoanalysis is of service, particularly as indicating the complexities of the many thousand years of repression displacement and adaptation. The work tendencies derive much of their energy from the displaced libido which in its highest manifestations is marvelously camouflaged as to its deep sexual origins.

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Under this camouflage a lot of sexual satisfaction is released, unknown as such to conscious thought. Without strong sex tendencies there can be no sublimations. Fliigel discusses three factors which make it necessary for libidinous energy to be devoted to sexual purposes as well as to sublimation. One is naturally the biologically necessary reproductive act. A second is involved in protracted adolescence of the organism which allows sublimation in small amounts only and when pushed results in many disturbances, prohibitions, taboos, etc. A third posits that a“normal” sexual development and exercise are necessary conditions of a healthy mental life in general. Libido urges and sublimations are taking place at innumerable levels of human integration and are complicated interactions, especially when it is recalled that sublimation and sexuality are under one pair of opposites, antagonists. The nonrepro—ductive elements are particularly drawn upon for individuation, but frequently slop over into autoerotic indulgences in view of the inhibitions put upon the definitely reproductive activities—hence homosexuality, etc., etc. Socialization, i.e., the building up of a herd instinct, is another important activity developed clearly by Fliigel. Inhibitions and numerous checks to too free sexual activity are interestingly utilized mechanisms to enhance certain gratifications; hence there arises an“art of love,” which utilizes a“return of the repressedmaterial in a new form of greater enjoyment capacity.

Section V deals largely with Malthusian postulates, which the author strongly supports, calling attention to the neglect into which the whole matter has more or less fallen. (Compare with recent revival of Neo—malthusian discussion and Birth Control movement in United States.) The unconscious opposition to the whole problem of necessary sublimation of sex activity is undoubtedly at the bottom of much of the critical attitude towards birth control and the Malthusian notions. The race is almost pathologically blind to its own future welfare in this unreasonable opposition. Fliigel believes this, correlated with the blow to his narcissism which Freud showed, was so widespread. Man's vanity as a“superior ape with megalomania” as Vaihinger once characterized him, still makes him believe he is above law and hence his paramount stubbornness to accept the reality principle whenever his erotic pleasure threatens to be curtailed. Again the fatuous principle of“the Lord will provide” which is only a part of man's mother complex, is operative in his belief that somehow or other he will escape law. Hence man's supreme inaninity in his belief in“luck” and similar types of bonehead attitudes. [Wall Street, etc.—J.] The“beneficent deity” is nothing but a parent substitute in the infantile unconscious and psychoanalysis reveals its presence. Aggression against our neighbors (stealing, wars, etc.) flow out of the wish to try to avoid insight into these fundamental internal situations. Therefore the cause for man's troubles is projected upon

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something else.“George did it” is the usual way of working out this parental complex. Thus incompetent political parties confiscate through faulty tax methods, etc., instead of making a going concern of great political units.

Instead of studying the nature of underlying psychological laws the rule of“passing the buck” has come to be employed. Hence the innumerable hostilities in families, in groups, in larger social units, among nations, etc. These hostile impulses under repression seek outlets in innumerable hypocrisies which undermine society in all directions. [Prohibition in America is one of these.—J.] Hence the illusions which have surrounded the causes of Universal Peace, Internationalism, etc. Fliigel does not regard these ideals as unrealizable, but not until the million and one minor subversions are done away with will larger freedom come.

Fliigel treats very exhaustively other factors bearing on the Malthusian postulates and concludes this section saying:“This fear of sexual pleasure apart from reproduction is beyond doubt a very fundamental aspect of human sexual inhibition, being connected both generally with the repression of the various ‘partial’ sex impulses and their subordination to the purposes of reproduction and more specifically (as Bleuler has emphasized) with the repression of onanism. It finds its biological justification in the fact that (as we have seen in the earlier parts of this paper) the conflict between Individuation and Genesis manifests itself not only on the economic level through the inverse relationship between numbers and individual development necessitated by a limited food supply, but also on the physiological and psychological levels by the competition of the two antagonistic processes for the available supply of vital energy. We are, however, not strictly concerned at this point with the individual and racial origins of this fear of sexual pleasure when divorced from reproduction, nor with the conditions in reality to which it may be said to correspond; consideration of which will fall more appropriately into our concluding Section. It is here sufficient to have pointed out the very important part which this fear plays in producing the inability to realise the nature of the biological and psychological factors to which the present paper is devoted.”

In Section VI he goes on to say that after showing the difficulties and developments of the ultimate nature of sex repression in his preceding chapters he would turn to more speculative aspects of the future.

“Our discussion of the difficulties in the way of a full and general recognition of the biological facts underlying sexual repression and of their practical and theoretical bearings is certainly not calculated to make us expect that this recognition will necessarily occur very soon, very suddenly or very rapidly. Indeed the difficulties in question seem to be so formidable that it would not be altogether surprising if such recognition were postponed for a very lengthy period. On the other hand the following

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significant facts: (a) that unwelcome scientific views, such as those of Copernicus, Darwin and Freud, have been or are being accepted by humanity; (b) that the present general trend of psychological evolution is probably towards conscious realization and control of difficult problems rather than towards blind repression; (c) that the biological conditions of sexual repression are directly connected with other biological conditions that are already generally recognized; (d) that the recognition in question holds out the possibility of bringing a higher degree of satisfaction than would otherwise be possible to some of the most powerful human impulses (through diminished work and increased sexual enjoyment) and therefore appeals strongly to the impulses in question—all these afford considerable justification for believing that the difficulties, however great, will be overcome and that some pretty general degree of recognition of the biological influences concerned will be achieved in the not too distant future. We must bear in mind moreover that the process of recognition will be immensely accelerated as soon as the economic and political implications of the biological facts become realized and adopted by any of the political leaders of the great nations.”

“Supposing then such a general recognition to take place, what prospects does this open up ?”

His two final sections may thus be summarized: V. A due realization of the nature and significance of the sexual inhibitions (together with their biological and economic foundations) has been prevented by a number of psychological factors, the study of which is of great importance for social psychology. Among these factors are:

(1)  An unwillingness (derived from the Narcissistic tendencies) to recognize that the human race is still subject to biological laws operative in the case of other living beings.

(2)  The idea (due ultimately to displacements of parent—love and of infantile“omnipotence of thought”) that God or Nature will provide amply for all possible human needs.

(3)  The tendency (fostered by Natural Selection in the past) to regard any shortage of the necessaries of existence as due to the hostile actions of our fellow men. This tendency is reinforced by the economic complexities and inequalities of modern civilization and also by a displacement of the hostile parent regarding feelings.

(4)  The repression of hostile feelings, due to socialization, leads to a failure to recognize the causes of hostility (between individuals, classes, nations or races) inherent in the pressure of population on the means of subsistence. Malthusianism is also unwelcome; (a) because it reduces the outlets for our philanthropic tendencies;

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(5)  because it tends to serve as an expression of child—hatred on the part of parents—contraception being regarded as equivalent to abortion or infanticide.

(6)  The confidence in large numbers which has been fostered by our past history and which is sometimes reinforced by a (Narcissistic) identification of Self and Country.

(7)  Unwillingness to realize the necessity for the (unpleasant) inhibition of the sexual tendencies. Connected with this are:

(8)  The primitive identification of the fertility of human beings with the fertility of animals and plants that serve for food.

(9)  The Narcissistic overemphasis of the sexual function. This (when projected on to the community) leads to a desire for a high birth rate.

(10) The fear that Malthusianism may lead to the extinction of the individual family (this fear being largely due to a Narcissistic identification of the Self with the family).

(11) An unwillingness to contemplate any divorce between Sexuality and Reproduction—this being chiefly due to the fear of removing the“natural” obstacles to sexual pleasure.

VI. A full recognition of the view here advocated (together with the implied recognition of Malthusian principles) may therefore be very long delayed; but there are reasons why it should not be indefinitely postponed. But even if recognized, appropriate action may still be delayed owing to various difficulties, e.g. (a) the question of how the relative fertility of various classes and nations is to be controlled (especially in the case of culturally inferior nations and classes), (b) the fear of sexual pleasure and of general mental stagnation consequent upon easier conditions of life.

But if, in spite of these difficulties, the struggle for existence is abolished as a result of adequate birth control, we may expect that a freer attitude towards sexual problems and sexual desires will result. The two aspects of the antagonism between Individuation and Genesis will however affect sexual inhibition differently. The inhibitions due to over—reproduction will be entirely removed, but the need for sublimation will remain and will continue to necessitate a considerable degree of sexual inhibition; the actual intensity of the inhibition from this source depending on a number of factors—biological, psychological and ethical in nature.

3. SMITH, WHATELY. Properties of Complex Indicators: A though—ful study of the word—association test (Jung) in which he calls attention to:

(1)  “Reaction Time.

(2)  The Galvanometer Deflection of the psycho—galvanic reflex.

(3)  Disturbances in the reproduction test.“

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He then goes on to state, as assumptions, that:

(1)  “That complex—indicators show affective tone.

(2)  That memory is influenced by the latter.

(3)  That there are two opposite varieties of tone.“

“Of these (1) was the initial assumption while (2) and (3) are not only acceptable on general grounds but also necessary deductions from my experimental results.”

His own summary is as follows:

(1)  “There are two quite definite, distinct and opposite varieties of affective tone, which may conveniently be called ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ of these the former tends to promote the accession to consciousness of the ideas to which it is concomitant, or the incidence of attention upon them, while the latter produces the opposite effect.

(2)  “Prolongation of reaction time alone is not a reliable complex—indicator. In a large number of cases (the whole of class TG mentioned above and part of class T) it is due to positive affective tone.

(3)  “Disturbance in reproduction is by far the best complex—indicator —or, at least, the most reliable indication of negative tone; I personally regard these two expressions as synonymous.

(4)  “The Galvanometer detects positive tone as well as negative and in many cases (the whole of class G) does so when the reaction time does not.

(5)  “Intensity of affective tone, whether positive or negative, increases both reaction time and galvanometer deflection. In general the most positively toned words are those with too—long times and too—large deflections: next come those with too—large deflections only. Words with no complex—indicators, or with too—long times only, are mostly indifferent. Words with disturbance in the reproduction are almost invariably negatively toned. Words having too—long times and too—large deflections are, on the whole, more intensely toned, whether positively or negatively, than those having too—long times or too—large deflections only.

(6)  “For quantitative work the galvanometer—deflection of the psychogalvanic reflex is markedly superior to the reaction time.

(7)  “The ‘resolving’ power and consequently the scope and utility of the word association method is greatly increased if the galvanometer is used in addition to the reaction time. The experimenter can divide his reactions into eight classes, all possessed of quantitatively and qualitatively distinct attributes, instead of into four only.

(8)  “The memory test enables us to determine the more important relative properties of these classes. It is a very laborious method and somewhat crude, but the results it yields show a remarkable concordance and it is probable that the conclusions arrived at are reliable.”

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4. SMITH, W. WHATELY. Complex Indicators and Form of Association.—A continuation of the previous paper in which after a full discussion of Jung's work he concludes:

“The success of the test and the amount of information to be gained from it must necessarily depend to a large extent on the experience of the physician. It is hardly a matter which can be reduced to a rigid formula; the conclusions drawn must rather result from a gradual process of correlating all kinds of indications given by the test with knowledge as to their import derived from various sources. The ease and certainty with which the physician can sum up his patient must be strictly limited by the extent and accuracy of this knowledge; it is all important that he should know, as precisely as possible, which indications are noteworthy and which are not.”

“So far as the form of the association goes there can be no doubt, in my opinion, that the most significant characteristic is the degree of idiosyncrasy of the reaction word. Stereotypes and multiverbal reactions are the most significant of all; then come predicate forms involving an expression of personal opinion or judgment of value. Outer associations, especially those verbal forms constellated by common phrases of everyday life, are quite insignificant, though I think it probable that the true ‘clang’—as opposed to the rhyme—is often a complex indicator.”

“In attempting to ascertain the general tendency for stimulus words to elicit emotionally toned reactions the best guide, so far as the form of associations is concerned, is probably the percentage of inner associations, the word ‘inner’ being defined as I have advocated above.”

5. CULPIN, MILLAIS. The Neurasthenic Pensioner.—An intensely practical paper by a thinking and feeling surgeon who was brought face to face with the real problems of human personality during the war. Culpin shows how the work of Roussy, Lhermitte and others while early appearing in the war was too much influenced by the superficial psycho—pathology of Janet. He then shows how the war neuroses and the traumatic neuroses were really similar types of reaction, and then goes on to ^how that only the deep psychology as revealed by analysis can thoroughly explore these cases. He discusses briefly a number of cases and finally concludes:

(1)  “The deterioration that takes place in the power of the pensioner to face the realities of life.

(2)  “The administrative loss of control over the individual, whose outlook may be distorted and whose neurosis is master of the situation.

(3)  “The need for a pension and at the same time the need for a stimulus to recovery.

(4)  “The special difficulty of the pensioner in facing the economic struggle.”

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6. MITCHELL, T. W. Psychology and the Unconscious.—A thoughtful consideration of this difficult problem, advocating the availability of the Freudian topographical and dynamic aspects of the terms, conscious, preconscious, and unconscious.“Censur” is wrongly translated Censor, instead of the dynamiccensorship,” but in general the Freudian conception is adequately presented. Mitchell further discusses Jung's conception of the“Unconscious,” his“personal and collective unconscious.” After this he submits some of his own views as the relations of these views, their application to psychopathology, and to psychology as a science which are of value but rather difficult to present in abstract.

7. Critical Abstract.—Excellent abstract of Internat. Zeit. f. Psa. 1920, part III of articles by Herman and Intelligence and Depth of Thought. This is a very sincere effort to show what psychoanalysis has to contribute to the problem of“intelligence.” Reik has a paper on Collective Forgetting; Groddeck an article on Wish—fulfillments in Earthly and Divine Punishments; Sokolnicka has an analysis of an Obsessional Neurosis; Freud's Preface to the Fourth Edition of his Three Contributions in which he points out:

“It deals with the opposition which this volume above all his other works has always met with. He says that although the psychoanalytic theories in regard to the Unconscious, repression, conflict, the mechanisms of symptom—formation and so on, have been more widely accepted he sees no reason to believe that the doctrines laid down in this book are less well—founded on careful and unprejudiced research than any others. Moreover the explanation of the opposition lies so close to hand. So many doctors have not the patience or the experience necessary for finding out these truths for themselves in prolonged analyses, or else the requirements of a quick cure make it impossible; and doctors who do not practise analysis are not in a position to form an opinion about that which only analysis can reveal. If mankind understood how to learn these things from the direct observation of children the ‘Three Contributions’ need never have been written.”

“Again the emphasis in this book on the significance of the sexual element in every department of life has led to an exaggeration of the idea, so that the nonsensical reproach is common, that psychoanalysis ex—explains ‘everything’ by sex. And yet Schopenhauer had previously shown clearly enough the extent to which sexuality—in the usual narrow sense—influences the life and deeds of mankind. As for the broader sense of the word sexuality, which includes those impulses which are found in children and in perverts, those who regard psychoanalysis with contempt are reminded that the divine Plato called it—Eros.”

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Article Citation

Jelliffe, S.E. (1926). British Journal of Psychology—Medical Section1. Psychoanal. Rev., 13(1):106-123

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