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Rosen, V.H. (1955). Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society. Psychoanal Q., 24:325-326.

(1955). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 24:325-326

Meetings of the New York Psychoanalytic Society

Victor H. Rosen


Mrs. Peller feels that in the psychological study of play there is the possibility for considerable mutual sharing and elaborating of experiences between the fields of academic psychology and psychoanalysis. Aside from Freud's original contributions in a variety of places to the psychoanalytic principles of play and Waelder's amplification of Freud's theory, there has been no consistent organized psychoanalytic theory of the structure of play. Play is defined as the mastering of anxiety aroused equally by the external exigencies of reality and the internal pressures arising from instinctual tensions. Play can be described and characterized on the basis of the libidinal phases in which it appears, and its general purposes, or its secondary gain, have to do with the development of mastery and the transformation of passive endurance into active mastery. Childhood play has three characteristic phases: preoedipal, Oedipal, and latency. There is also a 'preplay' period in the very early stages of infancy.

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