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Rallo, J. (1972). Aggressiveness, Feelings of Giddiness and Muscular Tension. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 53:265-269.

(1972). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 53:265-269

Aggressiveness, Feelings of Giddiness and Muscular Tension

José Rallo

In 1895, when Freud isolated anxiety neurosis from neurasthenia, he pointed out that

Vertigo occupies a prominent place in the group of symptoms of anxiety neurosis. In its mildest form it is best described as 'giddiness' … The vertigo of anxiety neurosis is not rotatory nor does it especially affect certain planes or directions, like Ménière's vertigo. It belongs to the class of locomotor or coordinatory vertigo… (Freud, 1895p. 95).

Since Abraham (1913), vertigo is considered a phenomenon closely linked with erotization of the muscular function. Ferenczi (1914) stated in a brief study:

Suddenly, this (unconscious) phantasy is destroyed by the doctor's warning that the session is ended; he suddenly becomes conscious of the actual facts… This sudden alteration of the psychic setting, the disillusionment (when one feels as though 'fallen from the clouds'), may call up the same subjective feeling as is experienced in sudden and unexpected change of posture when one is unable to adapt oneself suitably by compensating movements and by means of the sense organs—that is to say, to preserve one's 'equilibrium'—which is the essence of giddiness… it forms an example of the manner in which psychic states of excitement overflow into the bodily sphere, which may help in the understanding of hysterical conversion. With a feeling of giddiness after the end of the analytic session, probably the feeling of the psychic change-over can only transform itself into the sensation of giddiness because both processes deal with an analogous disturbance of equilibrium.

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