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Peto, A. (1967). On Affect Control. Psychoanal. St. Child, 22:36-51.

(1967). Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 22:36-51

On Affect Control

Andrew Peto, M.D.

Anxiety has been in the center of attention since Freud's earliest writings, and the clinical and theoretical insights attained have vindicated this interest. The other affects have never been subject to a comparable systematic investigation, although their paramount role has been stressed in various publications (Jones, 1929); (Glover, 1939); (Hartmann, 1939); (Hartmann and Loewenstein, 1962); (Fenichel, 1941); (Rapaport, 1953); (1960); (Schur, 1958); (Jacobson, 1957); (Novey, 1961); (Arlow and Brenner, 1964; and other authors). Schafer's paper (1964) shows that a clinical-theoretical approach that takes into consideration all the actually operating factors creates a task which can hardly be mastered, even in a long series of systematic observations.

This paper is an inquiry into the first noticeable phases of affect mobilization, affect change, and affect control as observed in the analytic session. The patients had already settled down in their transference neurosis and had acquired the necessary introspection for reporting their inner experiences. As a matter of course the analytic setup contributed to a slowdown and to a better registration of what was going on. The spontaneity and immediacy of the communications enhanced the directness of the patients' reports. In the first part of this paper I shall investigate some clinical-theoretical aspects of control and mobilization of the affect of "sadness."

I

As a point of departure I use a phenomenon that we often encounter in our daily practice.

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