This case report concerns a 31 year old man who suffered from a fear of enclosed places. During treatment for this claustrophobia the man recovered a memory from age 4 involving being trapped in a dark enclosed space. Subsequent information provided by the man's parents provided some degree of confirmation of his recovered memory. The man's claustrophobia subsided after recovering the childhood memory. An interesting aspect of the case is that prior attempts to recover a memory of a sexual nature (due to therapist suggestion) were not successful, suggesting the man was not unduly suggestible.
Dr. Bramwell conducted multiple experiments on multiple patients using hypnotism. In each of these experiments the Dr. hypnotized the patient and then suggested that they perform a certain task in a certain number of minutes. In most cases the patient was able to perform the task (or a close proximity) at the preappointed time (or a close proximity). The patient would have no recollection of why they felt the need to perform this task unless they were asked while hypnotized. The Dr. concludes that this was an unconscious measurement of time. Several other doctors either refute or agree with Dr. Bramwell’s conclusions.
The author, Barkworth, compares actions done by people in hypnotic states. He distinguishes between mental or physical actions and voluntary, automatic or intuitive actions. Barkworth reviews several of these types of cases, occurring with or without hypnotism. A few of these cases also involve automatic writing. One case in particular involves a patient’s ability to learn music and perform it at a later time with or without the written music notes.
This report describes the treatment of a 28 year-old clerk admitted to an asylum after sending threatening telegrams to various people. A history of many similar now forgotten episodes emerges. The therapist soon meets an alter personality responsible for these episodes, which are linked to past (unspecified) aversive experiences with an uncle. Further exploration of these traumatic events leads to the patient's improvement and gradual disappearance of the alter. Historical Note: About a decade after this paper was published, the author, Bernard Hart, would become a strong advocate of Freudian psychoanalysis and a vocal critic of Pierre Janet. <full>236 A CASE OF DOUBLE PERSONALITY, [ April, A Case of Double Personality.( a) By BERNARD HART, M. B., Lecturer in Psychiatry, University College Hospital Medical School, Assistant Medical Officer, Long Grove Asylum. DOUBLE personality is a fascinating subject, and has always possessed a peculiar attraction both for the professional psycho. logist and the layman— owing, no doubt, to the strange and often dramatic character of its manifestations. It is hoped, therefore, that a few notes upon an actual case may be of interest. These notes relate to a case belonging to the group of the psychoneuroses, a case of considerable complexity, and one which was subjected to a prolonged psychological investigation. The episodes connected with the double personality form, indeed, only a single chapter in a long history. I shall only attempt to relate as much of the other portions of this history as is necessary for the understanding of the chapter in question. This chapter is of exceptional interest in that I was able to witness both the birth and— I believe— the final disappearance of the secondary personality. The patient, whom we will call John Smith, a clerk in a business house, 28, was admitted to the asylum with a certificate stating little beyond the fact that he had sent threatening telegrams to various people, and had occasionally been observed to behave in a somewhat irresponsible manner. He was clear, collected, and to a cursory examination presented little that was abnormal. He stated that he had been assured by his wife that he had sent the telegrams, and that it might perhaps be true, but that he himself had no recollection whatever of doing so. A careful examination showed, however, that the sending of the telegrams formed only a single episode in a whole section of his past life, ranging over several weeks, the contents of which were entirely forgotten. Moreover, it was found that chequered throughout the preceding few years there were other similar totally forgotten periods. He would remember, for example, starting for the office one morning— then would come a blank— and, perhaps a week later, he would
Dr. Myers reviews multiple cases involving altered personalities. These personalities have been brought on by a variety of means, including dreams, drug use, physical disturbance, epilepsy or hypnotism. Some of the cases involve automatic writing. Dr. Myers discusses each of these cases briefly with an emphasis on the differences between the conscious and unconscious self.
Dr. Mitchell discusses several well-known cases of multiple personality, including the cases of: Ansel Bourne, Felida X, Mr. Hanna, Miss Beauchamp, Louis V, Mary Barnes, Madame B, and Milly P. The doctor then goes on to discuss how these secondary personalities can be formed and how it is possible for one personality to not be aware of the other personality. Dr. Mitchell takes on the view of these patients having co-conscious personalities, his reasoning is discussed in depth.
A young woman was treated for tremors and paralysis in the limbs, speech difficulties, high fevers and bleeding from the ears and eyes. Symptoms were not consistent with common diagnoses. Dr. Walker eventually communicated via hypnosis with two additional personalities; none of the three were initially able to recall actions of the others. The most child-like personality was reported by the primary personality as responsible for creating the symptoms. Walker was unable to obtain historic information which may have precipitated the symptoms. At conclusion of treatment, all symptoms had been alleviated but all three personalities continued to be accessible under hypnosis.
Mason argues the importance of recognizing and studying alternating personalities. He describes the awareness of the secondary personalities for each other and the primary personality, using the case of Madame B. to illustrate. The author identifies conditions in which the secondary personality has been observed: 1) spontaneously, 2) under hypnosis, 3) while asleep, and 4) as a result of pathologic conditions of the organism. The origin of personality as either a "product of a power inherent in nature" or "as an expression of organism" is discussed. The author concludes with consideration of the legal accountability of persons with alternating personalities.
The author discusses cases where the duplex personality of several different patients has been brought out with the use of hypnotism. Mason’s conclusion is that the second personality would have perceptive powers beyond the main personality. Clairvoyance is an attribute of this second personality and hypnotism is a way of bringing out this second personality in a controlled setting.
The multiple personality case of Blanche Witt is discussed. One of her personalities suffered from blindness in one eye, the other personality had perfect vision. Her condition was treated with hypnotism. The case of Marceline R. is also discussed. She suffered from an eating disorder, but when hypnotized she was able to eat properly, but returned to her former state when not hypnotized. Neither woman was cured, but was able to be symptom free while hypnotized.