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Once a thing is experienced, it is stored in memory. What is the basis and position of a memory when we are
not conscious of it, when our conscious minds are busy with other matters? What happens when a desire is
repressed, inhibited into inaction; when consciousness revolts against part of its own content? Is a "forgotten"
memory ever really lost, or a desire that is squelched and thrust out of "mind" really made inactive? Do our
inhibitions really inhibit, or do we build up another self or set of selves that rise to the surface under strange
forms, under the guise of disease manifestations?
Sigmund Freud and his followers have made definite answers to the foregoing, answers that are incorporated
in a doctrine called Freudianism. Freud is an Austrian Jew, a physician, and one that soon specialized in
nervous and mental diseases. Early in his career he did some excellent work in the study of the paralysis of
childhood (infantile hemiplegia), but his attention and that of an older colleague, Breuer, were soon drawn (as
has occurred to almost every neurologist) to the manifestations of that extraordinary disease, hysteria.
Hysteria has played so important a role in human history, and Freud's ideas are permeating so deeply into
modern thought that I deem it advisable to devote a chapter to them. CHAPTER V. 40 CHAPTER V.
HYSTERIA, SUBCONSCIOUSNESS AND FREUDIANISM
Hysteria was known to the ancients and in fact is as old as the written history of mankind. Considered
essentially a disease of women, it was given its present name which is derived from "hysteron," the Greek
name for the womb. We know to-day that men also are victims of this malady, though it arises under
somewhat different circumstances than is the case with the other sex. Men and women, living in the same
world and side by side, are placed in greatly different positions in that world, are governed by different
traditions and are placed under the influences of differing ambitions, expectations, hopes and fears. Hysteria
arises largely out of the emotional and volitional reactions of life, and these reactions differ in the sexes.
It was a group of French neurologists, headed by Charcot--and includ...
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 110 taught by Professor Kannan during the Spring '11 term at Anna University Chennai - Regional Office, Coimbatore.
- Spring '11