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Varendonck, J. (1922). A Contribution to the Study of Artistic Preference. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 3:409-429.

(1922). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 3:409-429

A Contribution to the Study of Artistic Preference

J. Varendonck

Perhaps this essay had better be called a contribution to the psychopathology of every-day life; for it is based on the experience of two healthy people who were not happy together—a matter of common occurrence. The man, a close friend of mine who became interested in psycho-analysis as an amateur, allowed me to use his unfortunate circumstances for scientific investigation.

Their married life had been a succession of quarrels and reconciliations, of which neither husband nor wife was able to give an explanation, for they had—at least during the first years of their marriage—no serious grievances against each other. For us it will suffice to know that they both carried in their inner selves two contradictory feelings: the wife had accepted her suitor out of love, no doubt, but she regretted her marriage the second day after the wedding because she saw she had made a mistake from the material point of view. It is this initial regret that developed in time into hostility thanks to the ignorance of the husband who rubbed her the wrong way. For although he was quite unable to explain his wife's lack of tenderness and solidarity, he felt it very keenly, became very excitable and insulted his wife, wounding her pride whenever he got into a temper, immediately to regret his anger and to try to make up for it. In that way he slowly estranged his wife from him.


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