The author defines repression as an active process of making some part of the mental content inaccessible to memory. He believes it to be harmful when it has negative effects on one's adaptation to his environment. He states that although it is a common practice to tell patients to not think of unpleasant memories it is rarely beneficial to voluntarily banish these thoughts. He discusses cases of war neurosis, and the part taken by repression in each of them. He concludes that facing painful memories and thoughts should be encouraged and patients should be helped after "cessation of repression" for improvement in treatment.
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.
“Multiple personality and dissociation, 1791-1992(2nd edition)” is a bibliography. It contains the 1st edition as well as updates through November 30, 1993. Article errors have been corrected when possible. The bibliography is divided up into the following areas: Multiple personalities, Dissociation and Amnesia, Depersonalization and Derealization, Fugue States, and Medico-legal Aspects.
This article describes the case of Mary Barnes, who was 12 years old in 1894. After an illness Mary began to develop multiple personalities over a number of years. 10 distinct personalities were noted. Their appearance lasted anywhere from a number of weeks without interruption to a mere matter of minutes, never to return. Each of the personalities was distinct and would be accompanied with facial features, body abilities and knowledge. One personality was a deaf mute, one was blind, and one was paralyzed, several personalities had low intelligence levels. Dr. Wilson describes each of the personalities in detail, along with their arrival and departure dates. The author gives a brief overview of the Nervous System. Letters written by Mary’s different personalities are also included.
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.
Dr. Browne writes of the idea of personal identity. First he discusses what his ideas of personal identity are then reviews several cases. These cases take place in the awake state as well as in the dreaming state. He also reviews the idea of a state of double consciousness. Both of these states he reasons are errors of identity and need to be studied further to gain more knowledge about them.
Mrs. X married at a young age, she soon became unhappy with her husband. She begins to imagine her neighbor is in love with her. When her husband dies she appears to have a psychotic event, and is sent to a mental hospital. Here she is thought to suffer hallucinations of a sexual nature. Her rambling thoughts are interpreted as having either sexual or social motives. The patient has previously had a sexual relationship with her brother. She also variously saw her father, her pastor and the President as her lovers, none of which were likely true. Mrs. X was discharged after four months and focused her efforts on religion and raising her children. A male patient is also briefly discussed here, he is also said to suffer from a lack of an adequate outlet of the expression of sex motives.
A man who disappeared and was presumed dead by his family was found four years later living a different life with a different name. The author interviewed and received correspondence from several sources related to the incident. While living under an alias, the man was recognized, but did not remember anything of his previous life or family. Upon awakening to his previous identity following a period of stress, headaches, and a nap, the man recognized his family members, but remembered nothing of his alias. A physician provides a theory that the alternate personality may be related to a blood clot.
The case of Felida X is studied by Dr. Azam. Felida suffers from periodical amnesia. In her primary state she was unaware of any actions that took place in her 2nd state, but she was aware of the presence of the 2nd state, but the amnesia is only present in the 1st state. In the 2nd state she remembers all of her actions while in the 1st state. While in this 2nd state Felida also presents changes in her character and affections. As Felida grew older the appearance of her second state increased in duration and her primary state became less and less frequent. Dr. Azam sees the amnesia suffered in the 1st state as the most important aspect of this case.
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.