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Ring, A.H. (1915). Psychoanalysis. Psychoanal. Rev., 2(4):390-408.

(1915). Psychoanalytic Review, 2(4):390-408


Arthur H. Ring, M.D.

“Blest are those whose blood and judgment

Are so commingled that they are not a pipe

For Fortune's fingers to sound what stops she pleases.”


In emerging from metaphysics the young science of psychology has followed the natural course of working from the more obvious and concrete to the less evident and abstract. The primary sensory mechanisms and their correlates in consciousness have been timed and measured until we have a fairly definite knowledge about perception, memory, attention, etc. All this is valuable and important but I will venture that every medical man who has perused an ordinary text book on psychology with the hope of finding there something that would help him to better understand the mind of his capricious, moody or depressed patients has looked in vain. The reason for this is that the psychology of the emotional life does not readily yield itself to experimental study and so the discussion of the emotions is still in its infancy. Again as Dr. Sidis has emphasized in his recent book “The Foundation of Normal and Abnormal Psychology” it is in abnormal minds, segmented by disease, that we can best study mind elements, and the writers of text books on psychology have done little work with diseased minds. Though much data on the emotional side has been collected relating to various types of mental deviation, it remained for the genius of Professor Sigmund Freud of Vienna to breathe life into all this material and to establish a wide-spread interest in the neuroses, by pointing out the main source of emotions and showing the relations between our fundamental desires and our acts, as well as giving us the method by which the motive of the act may be uncovered.

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