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Massie, H. Szajnberg, N. (1997). The Ontogeny Of A Sexual Fetish From Birth To Age 30 And Memory Processes: A Research Case Report From A Prospective Longitudinal Study. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 78:755-771.

(1997). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 78:755-771

The Ontogeny Of A Sexual Fetish From Birth To Age 30 And Memory Processes: A Research Case Report From A Prospective Longitudinal Study

Henry Massie and Nathan Szajnberg

From a longitudinal study that began at birth, a case is described in which a man at the age of 30 recalls the onset of a sexual fetish in his fifth or sixth year of life. The memories activated and dreams reported during the thirty-year follow-up interview, were synthesised with parent-infant film data and historical information contained in the research record concerning the child's development, his parents’ behaviour and traumatic experiences. Taken together they provide a detailed description of the psychological ontogenesis of the fetish. The case provides unusual information about the manner in which early childhood events-objectively documented-interdigitate with intrapsychic processes and mental structuralisation. This also illuminates processes by which memories are retained, condensed, distorted and lost. In addition, information from other participants in the project who reported sexually anomalous histories at the age of 30 raises questions of what can be predicted from early life experiences.

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