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Sigmund Freud term paper

"What Freud suggests is illuminating. People who react to loss of an object by loss of self-esteem are people who base their choice of objects on identification with the object, that is, upon a narcissistic choice of an object that in some way resembles themselves. Losing an object, therefore, is equivalent to losing part of the ego. In the important paper, "On Narcissism", to which reference was made above, Freud listed a variety of ways in which objects are chosen A person may love:

  1. According to the narcissistic type:
    • what he himself is (i. e. himself),
    • what he himself was,
    • what he himself would like to be,
    • someone who was once part of himself.
  2. According to the anaclitic (attachment) type:
    • the woman who feeds him,
    • the man who protects him,

and the succession of substitutes who take their place.
"Anaclitic" literally means "leaning-on". Freud is thinking of the original situation between the child and its mother: two objects, each of which receive some of the child's libidinal investment. Freud is suggesting that melancholics are either regressing to, or have never fully emerged from, a primitive stage of emotional development in which their objectchoices are narcissistic rather than anaclitic. Thus, when they lose an object, they are losing a greater part of themselves than those whose love is more determined by attachment to an object that is quite different from themselves. Freud thought of such patients as being arrested in the "oral" stage of emotional development . The reasons for this arrest are not clearly specified; but it was assumed that fixation at the oral stage might be the result of either deprivation or overgratification of the infant's oral needs. Freud's single-minded explanation of the depressive personality in terms of arrest at the "oral" stage of emotional development may be seen as insufficient in the light of modern research, but does not detract from the accuracy and penetration of his clinical description. Passivity, dependency, and doubts about one's own competence are traits of character often found together."

"This, the first case Freud published after the Studies on Hysteria in 1895, had as its full title "Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria." Originally, it was to be entitled Dreams and Hysteria, and its purpose was to show the role which dreams play in the analysis of hysteria. As Freud presents this case history, it centers around two dreams produced by the patient and their detailed analysis. Freud displayed considerable ambivalence about the publication of this particular case history. In 1901 he offered the paper to the Monatsschrift fuer Psychiatrie und Neurologie, in which it was ultimately published. It had been immediately accepted, but Freud asked to have the manuscript returned and kept it for another four years before he could bring himself to allow it to see the light of day. Furthermore, although the analysis itself came to an end actually at the end of 1900, Freud several times erroneously gave the date as 1899. Dora was the younger of two children; her brother was a year and a half older. Their father was in his late forties, and had suffered from a number of illnesses throughout his life. He had been a patient of Freud's, who had treated him for the consequences of a syphilitic infection; his symptoms had cleared up entirely. Four years later he brought his daughter to Freud, and psychotherapy had been recommended. At that time, it was rejected by the girl. Two years later, however, she returned and stayed in treatment with Freud for three months. When treatment began, Dora was eighteen years old. She had been suffering from a variety of hysterical symptoms since the age of eight. Freud says that she suffered from the commonest of all somatic and mental symptoms - breathing difficulties, nervous cough, loss of voice (sometimes for five weeks at a time), possible migraine, depression, hysterical unsociability, suicidal ideas, and a general dissatisfaction with life."

"The whole world still was Freud's province. In theory and therapy he respected no boundaries. Children, art, psychotics, social psychology, metapsychology called out in promising tones. He had no choice; he had to answer. The years had made possible a fuller view of what he had seen and captured in the dream book's last chapter. Ego, id, and super-ego grew out of that endlessly revealing, ceaselessly revealed picture of mental energy's fate. Using his metaphor to go behind bizarre and senseless symptoms, just as he had been doing for so long, Freud distinguished between "Neurosis and Psychosis" ( 1924). A struggle between ego and id produced neurosis; psychosis resulted from a disturbed relation between the ego and the outer world. An application of this kind furnished another justification for triply dividing the psychic apparatus. Freud went on to compare "The Loss of Reality in Neurosis and Psychosis" ( 1924). The neurotic fled part of reality, but the psychotic remodeled it. The first tried to ignore the real world, while the second put something else in its place. In trying to solve the hard question of "The Economic Problem in Masochism" ( 1924) Freud furnished yet another instance of metapsychology's deepening a physician's experience. If the pleasure-principle did rule men's lives, how then could they seek pain, as masochists certainly did? The Freud of the 1890's, who had searched for an economics of mental life, had not given up. He had added qualitative factors: large amounts of energy were not always felt as painful. Sexual excitement provided an apt illustration. Patients also unconsciously felt guilty. Without consciously recognizing what they were doing, they attempted to punish themselves. Masochism grew out of a fusing of instincts. Part of the death instinct had not been turned outward against the world as destruction, and to it was added an erotic element. Even the person who destroyed himself discharged libido. Masochists enjoyed suffering more than they relished going without it."

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