008 02 20Frd_Dora

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008 02 20Frd_Dora

  1. 1. Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria (“Dora”) 1901 / 1905
  2. 2. Hysteria — <ul><li>…or actually: </li></ul>
  3. 3. “ Female Hysteria”
  4. 4. “Female Hysteria” <ul><li>common medical diagnosis at the end of the 19 th century </li></ul><ul><li>symptoms: faintness, nervousness, insomnia, fluid retention, heaviness in abdomen, muscle spasm, shortness of breath, irritability, loss of appetite for food or sex, and a &quot;tendency to cause trouble“ </li></ul><ul><li>explained by stresses associated with modern life </li></ul><ul><li>treatment: often by vaginal massage </li></ul>
  5. 7. Hysteria <ul><li>beginning of 20th century—and partly thanks to Freud—the concept of “female hysteria” was replaced by “conversion hysteria” </li></ul><ul><li>“ conversion”: psychical conflicts are converted into physical symptoms </li></ul><ul><li>… which means that physical symptoms have a meaning (which analysis seeks to unveil) </li></ul>
  6. 8. Hysteria <ul><li>Josef Breuer & Sigmund Freud, Studies on Hysteria (1895): </li></ul><ul><li>At the origin of any case of hysteria there is a psychical trauma . </li></ul>
  7. 9. Dora <ul><li>6 years: Father develops tuberculosis, family moves to “B______” </li></ul><ul><li>8 years: neurotic symptoms begin (shortness of breath) </li></ul><ul><li>12 years: migraine, nervous coughing, loss of voice </li></ul><ul><li>14 years: Herr K. forces a kiss upon her; her reaction: disgust </li></ul><ul><li>16 years: the “scene by the lake” at “L_____” (Herr K. makes a “proposal”— actually, a sexual advance on her) </li></ul>
  8. 10. Herr K. kisses 14-years-old Dora <ul><li>“… the behavior of this child of fourteen was already completely hysterical. I should without question consider a person hysterical in whom an occasion for sexual excitement elicited feelings that were predominantly or exclusively unpleasurable…” </li></ul>
  9. 11. Dora’s First Dream <ul><li>A house was on fire. My father was standing behind my bed and woke me up. I dressed quickly. Mother wanted to stop and save her jewel-case; but Father said: “I refuse to let myself and my two children be burnt for the sake of your jewel-case.” We hurried downstairs, and as soon as I was outside I woke up. </li></ul>
  10. 12. Freud’s questions <ul><li>Dora has had that dream before (more than once). </li></ul><ul><li>When did it first occur? </li></ul>

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