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Lorand, A.S. (1931). Aggression and Flatus. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 12:368-368.

(1931). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 12:368-368

Aggression and Flatus

A. S. Lorand

A young chemist of twenty, an only child, who is in analysis because of agoraphobia, amuses his colleagues by lighting the expelled flatus in a darkened room of their dormitory. This mode of entertainment usually terminates a competition of 'breaking wind' with the other colleagues, and makes him the centre of attention among them. He, too, estimates this play very highly because he not only succeeds in producing sound and odour effects, as do the other colleagues, but he creates real 'fireworks.' When he displayed this form of amusement for the first time, it resulted in an astounding effect. As the patient himself described it, his colleagues flew all over the dark room, falling over each other, rolling with laughter, while he stood in the centre of the room triumphantly viewing and enjoying the situation.

In addition to the above form of breaking wind, his aggressiveness also finds expression in the 'dirty' language he frequently uses, which is analogous to the swearing of others. He replaces this swearing with words pertaining to sexual and anal matters. Of great importance in this general entertainment is the reading of poems and stories dealing with sexual and anal activities. They call it 'dirty' literature; these stories and poems are usually the original products of the other colleagues. The patient never fails to make a copy of them in this diary.

Analysis revealed him to be of a rebellious, argumentative nature, flaring up at the slightest provocation. Previous to analysis he displayed a calm, polite and amiable disposition. He cherished vivid and strong phantasies of omnipotence, of leading and commanding others; these phantasies derive from an early identification with his father. In flatulence, too, he identified himself with his father because it had always been the father's prerogative to produce flatus.

This brief clinical communication discloses, to my knowledge, a hitherto undescribed mode of grading aggression through flatulence; the flatus serves at the same time a high degree of narcissistic pleasure through this evaluation.

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