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Lanes, S. (1960). Meetings of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York. Psychoanal Q., 29:611-613.

(1960). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 29:611-613

Meetings of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York

Samuel Lanes

April 18, 1960. A SECOND CONTRIBUTION TO THE THEORY OF WIT. Ludwig Eidelberg, M.D.

This paper includes observations on the phenomenon of pleasure. The analytic examination of the two jokes presented indicates that the pleasure in hearing jokes is an æsthetic pleasure. Freud indicated that two kinds of forepleasure are experienced—erotogenic and psychic—and that forepleasure rather than end-pleasure is significant in the dynamics of wit. Further, he stated that forepleasure results from stimulation of the erotogenic zones. Dr. Eidelberg believes that forepleasure is the result of anticipation of a final discharge which may take place while the erotogenic zones are stimulated but that it is not necessarily dependent upon them. He also believes that end-pleasure may be produced by the gratification of pregenital wishes, as contrasted with Freud's opinion that such gratification does not produce end-pleasure. Psychic forepleasure, as described by Freud, is connected with the sensory organs and mental apparatus functions. It is related to the pleasure associated with laughter occurring after hearing and understanding a joke. Dr. Eidelberg believes that this pleasures has the characteristics of æsthetic pleasure, which differs from other pleasures in that it does not need motoric discharge nor does it require possession of the object.

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