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Fliess, R. (1949). Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule'. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 30:21-..

(1949). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 30:21-30

Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule'
Robert Fliess
The present study is devoted to the proposition that the physical act of speaking—to be considered here as a phase of and distinguished from the whole of 'verbalization'—may precipitate the release of quanta of regressive affect collateral to repressed ideation, and that such release is amongst the causes of the failure of the maintenance of repression. The conclusion drawn from this proposition is that the pleasure-physiological function of speaking is therapeutically active, and that, since liberation of affect is dependent upon instinctual discharge, a theory of the 'analytic rule' must account for its 'erotogenic' effects. If it is true that repression can be successful only as long as the affect collateral to the repressed ideation is suppressed—or that, as Freud expressed it, the 'vicissitudes of the affect-quantum of the representation' (in contrast to those of the ideational content) are 'decisive for the evaluation of the success of the repression'—the influence wrought upon repression through direct release of regressive affect in consequence of the pleasure-physiological functioning of the speech-apparatus requires serious consideration. Since the other influences of verbalization upon repression—such as are inherent in the formation of derivatives of repressed unconscious ideation, in the communication of these derivatives to the object of a transference, in the expression of affective experiences in the process of freeassociation, etc.—have been described exhaustively, it is in order to subject the one remaining influence to a selective investigation. The earliest analytic description of speaking per se, as a means of discharging affect we owe to Karl Abraham, who, in his Contributions of Oral Erotism to Character Formation, writes: '… The craving of certain individuals to experience gratification by way of sucking has changed to a need to give by way of the mouth, so that we find in them, besides the constant wish to obtain everything, a perpetual urge to communicate orally with others. This results in an obstinate urge to talk, connected in most cases with a feeling of overflowing. Persons of this kind are under the impression that their fund of thought is inexhaustible, and ascribe to their verbal utterances a special influence or an otherwise unusual value. Their principal relation to other people is consummated through giving out orally (Orale Ausfuhr). The obstinate insisting takes place, of course, mostly through speaking, which at the same time, however, serves the purpose of giving. I could furthermore regularly establish the fact that these individuals were able to control their other activities no more than they could their speaking. Thus, one frequently finds in them a neurotically exaggerated need for urination—a need often manifesting itself simultaneously with an outburst of talking or following it directly …'1 The implications of this first, classical observation can perhaps best be developed if the next fundamental remark on the subject, made by Ella Freeman Sharpe almost twenty years later, is considered. In an investigation of Psycho-Physical Problems Revealed in Language Miss Sharpe observes: '… When the ego stabilizes … (the) achievement of body-control and it becomes automatic, the emotions of anger and pleasure, which heretofore accompanied bodily discharges must be dealt with in other ways. At the same time as sphincter control over anus and urethra is being established, the child is acquiring the power of speech and so an avenue of "outerance" present from birth becomes of immense importance. First of all the discharge of feeling tension, when this is no longer relieved by physical discharge, can take place through speech. The activity of speaking
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1

Karl Abraham: Selected Papers. Hogarth Press, London, 1927. International Psycho-Analytical Library, 13, p. 401. The translation of this and the subsequent quotation from Abraham as well as the italicizations (with the exception of that of the word 'give') are this writer's.
2

Ella Freeman Sharpe: 'Psycho-Physical Problems Revealed in Language: An Examination of Metaphor', Int. J. Psycho-Anal. XXI (1940), 202. Italics the present writer's.
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is substituted for the physical activity, now restricted at other openings of the body, while words "themselves become the very substitutes for the bodily substances …"'2 If this general principle, formulated by Sharpe, is applied to the specific type of speaking described by Abraham, it becomes evident that, while the libido discharged in the fashion observed by him is undoubtedly oral, the erotogeneity is urethral. It is the
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XXI (1940). the instinctual discharge performed by them is urethral-erotic and their procreative intent is understandable only on the basis of the persistence of 'infantile sexual theories'. diarrhoea. or annihilating as well as that for physical excretion. when put to such purpose. frequently interfered with by the regressive employment of the speech-apparatus for instinctual discharge. Italics the present writer's. J. employ their speech-apparatus for the performance of a regressive urethralerotic instinctual discharge in displacement. The speech-apparatus. and in particular to the sphincter urethræ to the extent of causing speech to acquire certain characteristics of the excretory product involved. and has been described as such by the author. including fertilization'. and describable with the help of certain criteria. It must suffice to present here in brief outline the corresponding basic types of silence. and ————————————— 3 Ella Freeman Sharpe: 'Psycho-Physical Problems Revealed in Language: An Examination of Metaphor'. and a 'phallic organization'. distribute or circulate it in any form. Italics the present writer's. to the functional peculiarities of a 'sphincter' employed regressively.22 - if and when analysis causes them to relinquish this 'partial-erotic' disturbance or abuse.sc.org. while doubtlessly a most suitable substitute for urethral-erotic performance. originally performed by the oral-erotic zone. one may add.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 2 de 9 . WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. in such a description. These individuals exhibit the corresponding neurotic symptoms or perversions (pollakisuria. It must therefore be possible to describe certain types of regressive 'partial-erotic' language by distinguishing certain acoustic qualities indicative of the emulation by the speech-apparatus of a particular phase in the erotogenic performance of a particular erotogenic zone.). Such actually is the fact. anal-erotic. Speaking. as Abraham later remarks. 202. whose erotogenic rôle it is forced to play. and is furthermore. Psycho-Anal. lends itself also to the displacement upon it of anal-erotic instinctual discharge. XXI (1940). The contention that there are different types of silence may at first appear startling.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 excretory nature of urination that explains the reversal of 'vector'-quality—designated by Abraham as 'peculiar displacements in the oral sphere' in the terminology of his time—requisite for the 'gratification by way of speaking' through 'giving by way of the mouth'. killing.fr/document. anuria. Int. yet their observation is limited to those individuals in whom certain partial-erotic excretory activities have retained or regained—either permanently or temporarily— their original sexual function. would have to be classed as a 'mixed' form. And it must also be possible to describe 'interference-phenomena' caused by the temporary diversion of the oral zone from speaking—a diversion caused by the need for extremely regressive instinctual discharge and productive of an exchange of pre-linguistic expression for verbalization. or evaluation (Entleerung). however. constipation. 202. The 'special influence' ascribed by these speakers to their verbalization.univ-paris-diderot. 402. Abraham's observation has here been scrutinized in support of the contention that it concerns only one of several forms of pathological speech. the 'overflowing' with speech at the price of dilution of content. The 'unusual value' perceived by them in their utterances reflects therefore.e. is forced to imitate pleasurephysiological action peculiar to the urethralerotic zone. i. verifiable by clinical observation.3 Yet the particular kind of excretion emulated in speech by the subjects of his description is urinary. etc. yet it is supportable by a simple theoretical consideration. the inhibition or the performance of discharge of libido (and aggression) through a particular erotogenic zone. It is illegal to copy. Speaking. and their speech-apparatus appears as conditioned in its performance by the functional characteristics of the excretory activity. and derive an instinctual gratification from speaking that they had once derived. Int. An alteration in their erotogenicregime does not fail to reflect itself in a corresponding change in their language.PEP Web .pep-web. they are not traceable to the properties of regressive libido. 4 Ella Freeman Sharpe: 'Psycho-Physical Problems Revealed in Language: An Examination of Metaphor'. Different types of regressive partial-erotic language are observable. its two components as 'the incontinence-type of urethral-erotic regressive language' and 'phallic urethral-erotic regressive language'). The peculiarities of regressive language are traceable. Psycho-Anal. substitutes in these persons altogether or partly for an infantile sexual and aggressive urinary performance. J. urinary games. an emulation conditioning speech after the mode of a particular excretory product under conditions of its regressive erotogenic employment. in other words.rproxy. their speech becomes normal. Theoretically the conclusion is inescapable that if speaking is to http://www. is destructive and procreative. (The language described by Abraham. To sum up: the individuals. p. and regressively still derive.5 A description of the different 'basic' and 'mixed' types of urethral-erotic. 'the narcissistic evaluation applied in the unconscious to all physical and psychic productions'—an evaluation equivalent. the masturbatory employment of enemas. and the 'inexhaustibility'4 of spurious thought paralleling the frequently copious output of urine. described by Abraham. who writes that 'the urge to talk is in these individuals no less a representation of demanding than of attacking. 5 An insistence upon the distinction between erotogeneity and libido—a distinction not always maintained in analytic discussions—is requisite to the present study. It is not partial-libido that reflects itself in the act of speaking but partial-erotogeneity. characterized by its relative independence from intake. and oral-erotic regressive language is prohibited by the scope of this communication. Hence the 'obstinate urge' to exhibit verbally. in other words. from urination. . to the original conscious evaluation by the child of his physical excretory productions.

Inception (the fashion in which the patient begins the pause in his speech). in doing so. The degree and the particular kind of interference by silence with speaking and the communication of thought. The termination of analerotic silence is more likely to be followed by a thought-fragment than by a thought.PEP Web . they are as suggestive of spastic conditions (e. No struggle accompanies its beginning or its termination. Termination (the patient's reaction to the analyst's admonition to resume verbalization). quarter rest. while the loss of contact. by being purely 'interpretative'—required. distinguished from both these types. or the combination of a double bar with a fermata.) The control of regressive affect. and. who is requested to compensate for the inadequacies of a general. etc. less 'affective' than the first. In addition to this the performer inserts 'unwritten' pauses in his playing. displays the 'quasi-voluntary' and only mildly 'peristaltic' performance of this particular sphincter.). II. no longer a 'normal' appearance. The patient becomes lost in it.6 Their description here without the simultaneous description of the partial-erotic language-types to which they belong is an unavoidable imposition upon the reader. or in the first degree of hypnosis. migraine. is disruptive of syntax.23 - here been dependent upon the prevention of urethral-erotic instinctual discharge in displacement. is actually the case. he employs. and occasionally even in physical pain. It occurs at odd places in the grammatical structure.org. ANAL-EROTIC SILENCE (= emulation by the speech-apparatus of closure of the sphincter ani.fr/document.g. in other words. The occurrence of three different basic types of silence can be clinically observed and described with the help of the following characteristics: a. pensively as it were. distribute or circulate it in any form. under certain conditions be caused by the retention of words as the substitute for an excretory product and it must be possible to identify a particular form of silence as the equivalent of the closure of a particular sphincter. I. . where the head is often held or rubbed in a similar fashion) as are the immobility of the patient or the changes in his position (which are apt to resemble those intended to relieve an abdominal cramp). The behaviour accompanying the period of silence. I was just thinking …' followed by an abstract of the omitted thought. URETHRAL-EROTIC SILENCE (= emulation by the speech-apparatus of closure of the sphincter urethræ. If typical gestures accompany this form of silence. Throughout its duration—a duration of extremely varying length—the patient exhibits tenseness and struggle. b. (Only occasionally does he remind the observer of an individual under the influence of mild sedation. e. who is no longer capable of either terminating it upon admonition or supplying the missing thought. the speech-apparatus had to imitate. whereby he notates a still different type of pause without definite time-value and of a nature intelligible only to the expert. the combination of a rest with a 'fermata'. but impresses one as productive of an inhibited speech.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 be looked upon as a substitute for sphincter-action. He displays neither motion nor pantomime. The difficulty in following the analytic rule when experienced by the patients characterized above must at times therefore be reducible to a fear of incontinence in displacement. appears to interrupt silence more http://www. almost invariably a change of subject—a change indicative of the interruption of a trend of thought by another. occasionally. the 'rest'— characterized by its time value (whole.) This form of silence presents. exhibited temporarily by the patient. for example. and gives merely the impression of having 'forgotten' to follow the analytic rule.) This is the most 'normal' form of silence inasmuch as it resembles most closely the silence punctuating ordinary conversation. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. c. It naturally is to be understood that these different forms of 'partial-erotic' silence are interruptions of 'partial-erotic' language. (The latter contains. The analyst's question: 'What is on your mind?' is almost immediately answered with a typical: 'Oh. This again. collateral to this break in audible ideation.univ-paris-diderot. Besides the most popular type of pause. Temporary cessation of speech must. half.g. however. Thus.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 3 de 9 . closure of the sphincter urethræ. and speech. in other words. silence must be considered as the equivalent of sphincter-closure. It is illegal to copy. is reminiscent of that shown in sub-coma. pauses or breaks in a verbalization of which they are no less an integral part than are the pauses or rests in a piece of music. whereby the rest is deprived of its time-value. reminds the observer of that of an individual in distress. in interrupting the 'flow of words'. as it were. had ————————————— 6 The existence of different types of silence has long been familiar to the musician.rproxy. in contrast to the previous one. for phrasing ('rubato') or declamation and often unsuitable for notation. schematic presentation by contrasting the salient points in the descriptions rendered below with each other. d.sc.pep-web.) The impression is borne out by the patient's readiness to resume verbalization. and seems to fetter the speaker. His facial expression as well as his posture. and appears engrossed in his thinking without any visible strain.

e. symbolically) of an erotogenic occurrence. . required of the speech-apparatus that it emulate sphincter-action. 281-297. If the speech-apparatus is to be thought of as emulating the once dominant oral-erotic zone. in this instance. informing either directly or indirectly (e. cannibalistic. inducing. temporarily. active as well as passive. in other words. (1932). not only more regressive than the two previous types.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 often than silence speech. The stoppage appears 'involuntary'. The object. becomes therefore subject to the wish for incorporation. as though it were solid. the word. practised wetting perversions. EXAMPLE I This example concerns a male patient who exhibited throughout the beginning of his analysis a mixed form of 'phallic-urethralerotic' and 'anal-erotic' language—a combination describable as the speech of the public speaker: fluent. Freud: Female Sexuality. ORAL-EROTIC SILENCE (= diversion of speech-apparatus to the control of oral-erotogeneity). but that it revert to its previous existence in an early infantile ego. informs one afterwards. as is commonly known. but it is of a different make-up.univ-paris-diderot. Int. an excellent speaker. by exploiting the analytic situation in the service of a transference. 13. and doctrinaire. sustaining or accompanying the silent period renders it understandable. the patient discharges these strivings.24 - only if a further complication is kept under consideration. distribute or circulate it in any form.org. a more regressive one than that of urethral-erotic cessation of speech. in other words. The patient.sc. In the pure type of oralerotic silence. a 'silence malgré lui'. and that the collateral active and aggressive instinct-component (biting) manifests itself in the abrupt severance of the subject from the object of a very early transference. and conveys to the listener the impression that the patient had suddenly physically 'absented' himself. and that the ingestive activity of the child is the model for such identifications. through the insertion http://www.fr/document. The clinical picture of anal-erotic silence is. in other words. i. It is in consequence of this radical transformation that the patient is suddenly silent. he has ceased to exist for the moment as an object in the outside world and his suggestive influence is suspended.pep-web. and can indeed rarely be terminated through admonition. The struggle is a more dramatic one. treat the excretory product. an individual who derives. can be accounted for ————————————— 7 Cf. Psycho-Anal. III. his very name from the fact that he is non-speaking. its interruptions imitate closure of the powerful sphincter-ani. simultaneous with this 'total incorporation of the undivided object' (Abraham). sometimes puzzling to the patient. The three basic types of partial-erotic silence shall be illustrated by two clinical examples. without recognizable motivation. J. the strivings discharged through the oral-erotogenic zone become. was obsessed with the phantasy of observing urinary incontinence in a woman. the excretory process displaced upon speaking is pronouncedly 'peristaltic'. and when induced is often imitative of the original rage-response to an enema on the part of the child. preclusive of speaking and conducive to an erotogenic control of the earliest oral-libidinal and oral-aggressive instinctual strivings.PEP Web . The patient. unsuited for analysis since it is almost preclusive of freeassociation. such language is. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. naturally. the analytic situation for an 'intra-uterine' existence. has exchanged. The silence appears 'interminable'. the resumption of speech when spontaneous occurs against an almost 'physical' resistance. This form of silence is not—as are the others—either an interruption or a disruption of speech but rather a temporary replacement of verbalization by silence. however. credibly. The complete lack of affect. While effective before an audience. of a genuine and truly unconquerable inability to speak. It occurs. The individual has here lost speech because he has temporarily become an 'infant'.7 The control of regressive affect through silence requires here of the speech-apparatus that it emulate anal-erotogeneity. The remaining component of the ingestive instinctual action ('devouring'). when capable of 'working through' his behaviour. one must assume that the passive ingestive function of this zone ('sucking') excludes the excretory performance of speaking.. The analyzand exhibits no signs of struggle or conflict whatsoever. The patient. well-structured. The interpolation of oral-erotic silence into verbalization is therefore indicative of the intrusion of a 'primal' transference into the transference-situation.rproxy. in other words. lies either perfectly still or is quietly engaged in some form of pantomime. that its nature is that of a 'primary identification'.g. and felt compelled to induce a bowel movement every night. We have learned from Freud that the earliest relation to the parent-object is not object-libidinal but narcissistic. demanding mutual incorporation of both subject and object. and inhibit 'excreting' it by exhibiting different degrees of 'verbal constipation'.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 4 de 9 . bears a resemblance to mutism. It is illegal to copy. before going to sleep. It is part of a struggle for or against verbalization. versatile. The control of regressive affect has not. its eventual termination is essentially a spontaneous one. when eventually distinguished from an ego. however. Thus the analyst is ingested. as well as motive. The oral-erotic type of silence is.

became aggressive.PEP Web . of course.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 of soap into the rectum.') He had. EXAMPLE II The female patient whose behaviour illustrates oral-erotic silence felt frequently tongue-tied. The peristaltic ('motor') effect of the displacement appears in this episode as somnambulistic ('locomotor') action. it appeared expedient to give him a partial interpretation of the erotogenic make-up of his silence. It is illegal to copy. supported by the analytic work. of the same displacement of additional quantities of narcissistic cathexis from the urethral. it concerns merely certain qualities of narcissistic cathexis. Yet he followed this with an emphatic retraction. Since he had once. as it is if compared to that of the product of itself. I might have killed myself. occasioning this last interruption.sc. yet upon arriving at the lavatory of a public building. The patient. he had actually been fighting a urinary urge. this time. displayed by this patient—a change that might have been anticipated for theoretical reasons—occurred unexpectedly and abruptly. walking out of that door. upon waking. whose ego had become endangered through the buoyancy of the repressed. had been unable to urinate. it disproved the interpretation. in other words. and lapsed again into silence. while angrily hitting the couch: 'I know I'm not following the analytic rule!'. it would. She suffered. distribute or circulate it in any form.org. His language reflected thus the same mixture of urethral-erotic and anal-erotic traits that distinguished his erotogenetic régime.rproxy. In the first attempt he had followed the urge. was silent against her will. from the beginning of the hour on.pep-web. giving out on a staircase.8 He answered this interpretation immediately with the admission that.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 5 de 9 . is committed to the drawing of candid pictures. who on former occasions. He exclaimed. He was told that he was treating speaking in analysis. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. enables the theoretician to compare topographically. The change in the form of silence. on to which they had been displaced. and walking towards the bathroom. with great difficulty. ('I woke up just in time. as he previously had treated urination. It exhibited all the characteristics belonging to this type and lacked all those described previously as criteria for anal-erotic silence. interrupted the act of expelling himself from the posterior aperture of his room—'posterior' relative to that employed previously under the urge to urinate— through awakening under the same economic conditions that forced him subsequently to interrupt verbalization through silence. to imitate his constipation through spastic anuria.9 The cathectic displacement deduced and described by this writer had actually been indirectly experienced and described symbolically by his patient. with an impulsion to regressive analerotic instinctual discharge. the previous with the present attempt of the patient to resolve the conflict between his urinary urge and the necessity for ————————————— 8 The analytic observer. and totally unaware of what had been on her mind. in need for urination. The main symptom was a chronic anorexia. now. and refused to supply the omitted thought.fr/document. on the contrary. . since what had prevented him from verbalization had merely been his concentration upon fighting the urinary urge. The change in displacement described here is but a partial one. besides—and had done so since early childhood—from a particular syndrome in which a sudden spell of anorexia is accompanied by slight nausea. and by eliminating his urine in single drops. have now been displaced on to the speech-apparatus and have enabled the latter to a similar imitation in the course of which sphincter-closure is reflected as anal-erotic silence. and had succeeded only after a lapse of time. The erotogenic employment of words as representatives of the excretory product is. To avoid an erroneous inference from the report in the text it may be explicitly stated that such interpretation is but rarely given to a patient by this writer and that it should not in his opinion ever be given in preference to that of any other form of acting-out in the analytic situation. The quantities of auxiliary cathexis of the anal sphincter that had at that time enabled the patient's urethra.10 The erotogenetic employment of his speech-apparatus. He resisted one day the analyst's admonition to terminate one of his silent periods. The partial displacement of anal-erotogeneity upon the speech-apparatus affords manageability of such discharge through verbal continence in the form of regressive anal-erotic silence. but had concealed the matter throughout. In the case referred to in the text. been frightened by the discovery that instead of approaching the bathroom he was moving away from it in exactly the opposite direction towards the door of his one-room apartment. yet his silence did not: it was purely urethral-erotic. equally advantageous if compared to the employment of the patient's own person. a sensation of emptiness in her stomach and a http://www. by declaring that it was by no means a confirmation but that. The narrative interrupted so suddenly by silence had concerned a sleep-walking episode of the previous night—an episode representative.univ-paris-diderot. therefore. terminated a session prematurely by jumping up from the couch under a sudden urinary impulse. causing underweight and becoming acute in the presence of either mother or lover. not have been given in the absence of the previous acting-out. in the very beginning of his analysis.25 - its inhibition. and had experienced the effect of his unconscious counteraction as a spastic anuria. a 'naturalist'.to the analerotic zone. feeling that he must leave lest he wet. had propelled himself symbolically from the office. This declaration while obviously repeating the characteristically aggressive response of anal-erotic silence to admonition. had. symbolically. insured the patient against 'accidents' in the ordinary as well as in the nursery sense of the word. Her 'erotogenic' symptomatology was entirely oral. yet it offers an economic advantage to the patient. had arisen from bed and had found himself.

The effects of her treatment. she responded with the equivalent of a 'children's dream' (Freud)—a simple wish-fulfilment for an analysis in which one does not have to speak but. endorsed and in the same breath disowned by Hamlet ('… All of which … though I believe. quoting the pertinent parts. put your hand between my legs and gave a firm push against my vagina. of the instinctual make-up of the pure type of oral-erotic silence. both. distribute or circulate it in any form.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 6 de 9 . on the contrary.) POLONIUS: '… Will you walk out of the air. is ordered to be silent. The unconscious infantile dreamwish fundamental to the dream. 28. rendered previously by the writer. who had actually been afraid of killing himself by 'going backward'.) To the second serious attempt on the part of the analyst to convince this patient of the interference. though I most powerfully and potently believe. her leg slips off the couch and hangs down from the side without a shoe. 10 The locomotor intent acted out somnambulistically by this patient is suggested in the astonishing question put by Polonius to Hamlet in his famous 'diagnostic' interview with him. …' Patient and analyst look at each other. in which the analyst is referred to in the second person—'You knelt down next to me.univ-paris-diderot. is represented by the dreamer as an alternative to verbalization —a representation in full accordance with that. you could go backward. Sir. within one year. Polonius' reaction. The patient feels 'warm and cosy'. here reported. however. while crossing the room in order to get an ashtray).sc. which enabled her to exchange. (She mentioned consequently. in the analyst's office. The question is asked in response to Hamlet's lapse into silence—a silence preceded by an allusion to the same change in the subject's cathectic position from the phallic to the anal-erotic zone as was supposed to have occurred in the patient. in contrast to those had by children. and of the type where the secondary elaboration is so deceptive that it had once led Freud to the (later tentatively abandoned) belief in a 'nocturnal phantasying' (naechtliches phantasieren). subject and object of the wish. in order to demonstrate that such language exists. Sir. of 'being in it'.fr/document. are conceived of as phallic and the instinctual action (triebhandlung) appears in its characteristic attenuation to 'touching'. I woke up then and felt ecstatic. late in the evening. and—to quote from the report. my lord?' HAMLET: 'Into my grave ?' Both question and answer are illustrative of the tenets set forth in the text. should be as old as I am. precipitated acute depressions. . were due to a 'substitution therapy' by which the persisting influence of a phobic. is sufficient for the present purpose. as has Abraham's clinical observation and the result of Sharpe's genetic investigation. The dreamer finds herself. '… The sensation of your naked body (especially your stomach) against me was so thrilling that I was almost numb. in the experience of complete motor-inhibition combined with the wish to 'creep into something' or of the phantasy. Nevertheless I had the feeling that you enjoyed the "cure" too. see p. The description of partial-erotic silence—a phase of regressive partial-erotic language —has been presented here. yet I hold it not honesty to have it thus set down. inasmuch as the subject refuses to supply the omitted thought. Shakespeare's invention of a text. yet I hold it not honesty to have it … set down. by her frequent interruptions of verbalization. It felt good. A digest of it. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. coincident with her treatment. The dream. was a long one.26 - quasi-mood identified to herself as 'that certain feeling'. like a crab. prohibitive and competitive mother had been replaced by that of the analyst. Scene 2. … The thrill was one that passed over my whole being (no specific area). (Act II. is nevertheless quite transparent because its representation is a typical one and well known. for you yourself. and in speaking. HAMLET: '… All of which. …') will be appreciated as a means of acquainting the audience with the protagonist's silent thought. This mutual incorporation.' If it is remembered that anal-erotic silence has been characterized as unbreakable. …' The inability of this patient to associate freely has so far precluded the analysis of her dreams. whose unconscious incorporation had from the beginning on. The dream is expressive of the pre-oedipal wish to enter the mother. so it appeared. The apparent incongruency between the generalization that verbalization in analysis implies regressive instinctual discharge and thereby http://www. not having to speak to the partner and employing mouth as well as vagina for contact. as far as it was describable.rproxy. whereupon the analyst walks back to his chair and addresses the patient: 'Don't say another word!' He then resumes his approach in undress and lies down upon the patient. been consummated so avidly that the mere turning of his back to the patient (for example. The particular ease with which the young woman became capable of vaginal responses had at first appeared almost incredible until one day her complete satisfaction over a 'big fat orgasm' of the night before made it clear that the vagina had been mobilized so unhesitatingly because it was an organ of alimentation.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 ————————————— 9 For a general discussion of the economicgain from the displacement of regressive excretory erotogeneity upon speech. It was not only a sexual delight but almost a spiritual one.org. The latter consisted. if. remains incomprehensible unless it is understood as descriptive of the 'peristaltic' occurrence ending in sphincterclosure discussed in the text above and symbolized in the patient's performance. In the dream I was led to believe by you that this was some sort of treatment —a part of my analysis. It is illegal to copy. complete inactivity for enjoyable and successful activity in almost all realms of her life. as one of the most pleasant features of her first sexual experience.pep-web. however. Hamlet's answer confirms this interpretation and duplicates that of the patient. Italics mine. with an analysis.PEP Web .

peculiarly defective as it is. 'What do you read. both of whom are 'historical' persons ('… for you yourself.) Thought is here treated regressively: cathexis is withdrawn from it and the word. at times.org. ultimately. The danger implies. sir. the inspection of the patient's literary or artistic products by the analyst. The displacement of quantities of narcissistic cathexis upon the speech-apparatus. an excretory or ingestive incontinence. And the liberation of affect-quanta through erotogeneity other than that of the speech-apparatus will be looked upon as preclusive. . on the other. words'. Discharge of regressive affect in these activities will be regarded as conducive. is a danger to his ego-organization. symptoms of infantile erotogeneity. In other words: if and when the 'infantile' neurosis of the analyzand—the nucleus of his later neurosis—is reactivated through the analytic procedure. to a degree sufficient to insure his ego against such disruption. to a dilution of affect. Once the unique position of the speechapparatus and the consequences of the restriction to verbalization in the 'talking-cure' are completely understood. consequently. concerning an excretory exchange. in nature. content mere 'matter'. ('Old men('s) … eyes purging thick amber and plumtree gum …'). For no neurosis lacks such a disturbance. between two partners. The reactivation of infantile erotogeneity in the course of the analytic work.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 7 de 9 .fr/document. implied in the insistence upon submission to the demands of the analytic rule. The dialogue—that is. The promotion. on the one hand. impregnation. my lord?' with 'Between who ?' (Italics mine. and of the neurosis. of their displacement upon the latter. Gratifications—such as smoking in analysis. an appreciation of the fact that the transformation of the derivatives of repressed unconscious thought into auditory word-images through verbalization—a transformation that renders these products of internal perception subject to external perception not only by the analyst but also by the patient himself —involves an aperture of the body terminal to an erotogenic zone that permits a regressive erotogenic employment. It is illegal to copy. The indirect and symbolic representation of the subject's excretory activity has been interpreted in the remarks on the same scene contained in the footnote on pl 26. a disruption of this organization.rproxy. Yet he might nevertheless not be able to fulfil the demands of this rule if such fulfilment did not offer. is not truly indicative of a contradiction. The patient's compliance with this rule is due. economically. where Hamlet.univ-paris-diderot. suggestions infringing upon this restriction will—as far as the analytic treatment of the neuroses is concerned—no longer be entertained.). sufficient to perform the regressive partial-erotic discharge of certain instinctual quantities (triebquantitaeten) through speaking carries the economic benefit of their mastery by the neurotic. The interference of different forms of partial-erotic silence with verbalization is therefore symptomatic of the struggle for control of instinctual discharge—a struggle engaging the infantile ego of the neurotic in the interest of its preservation. If these theoretical considerations permit at all a technical application it is an obvious one. of a maximum of verbal and a minimum of excretory instinctual discharge will be recognized as a requisite to the obtainment of maximal remembrance and minimal acting-out. my lord?' with the famous 'Words. the substratum of thought. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared.PEP Web . 'gift'. topographically. etc. words. engaged in the acting-out of a 'primal phantasy'. etc. It is this fact that enables the patient to cancel the inhibition of affect collateral to repressed ideation. however. thus. should be as old as I am …' etc.27 - become manifest11 and productive of partial-erotic language. sir') and excretory. The psychotic's ego. The consequences of this for the technique of the psycho-analytic treatment of the psychotic are equally obvious.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 the liberation. however slight and intermittent. and no analysis can be successful without its temporary exacerbation.sc. at least a particular economic advantage.) has been omitted from the present study because it is covered by the theory of psycho-sexual development. and the restriction of such occurrence to patients displaying an erotogenic disturbance. after having replied to Polonius. The limitation to verbal expression in analysis requires. in the very act of the verbal communication of the latter. or the use of the office toilet. cannot be relied upon to avail itself of the economic advantage described previously of verbal over excretory instinctual discharge. as is his willingness to remember. the mutual elimination of matter —occurs. in other words. will temporarily ————————————— 11 The regressive employment of the excretory product—the word—in the transference (phallic exhibition. An acknowledgement of the existence of such employment is contained in the dialogue quoted above. Text consequently becomes mere 'words'. The displacement of such erotogeneity upon the speech-apparatus is one of the fundamental effects of the enforcement of the 'analytic rule'. the corresponding activity of the object is represented directly and in displacement. antagonistic to its concentration in speaking. Yet this matter is one 'between' subject and object of a transference which is aggressive ('Slanders. The regressiveness of his psychic organization implies a topographical re-differentiation whose extent as well as its nature alters the context in which the displacements of erotogeneity upon the speech-apparatus WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. will be appreciated as not only economically but also topographically antagonistic to verbalization. upon occasion. for its full comprehension. distribute or circulate it in any form. answered the former's explanatory question 'What is the matter.pep-web. It is http://www. to his 'compliance with (the demands of) the analyst—a compliance rooted deeply in the unconscious parent-complex' (Freud). of regressive affect collateral to repressed ideation. either excretory or ingestive. which hitherto may have been latent. is cathected instead.

be considered the totality of the 'organ-representations'. it consists in the last analysis of an integration of memory-traces of word-images. if the representations of the erotogenic zones contained in it are distinguished from the rest by their particular and direct dependence upon 'pleasure-physiological' processes of instinctual charge and discharge. will therefore not only tolerate but often indirectly encourage its infringement.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 8 de 9 . . capable of intiating alterations in the pleasure-physiological WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. of a 'primal-mouth' a 'cloaca'. Premature exercise of the erotogeneity of the speech-apparatus through untrammelled verbalization may. a 'phallus'—incapable of relinquishing its position to an adult psychic organization. and distinguishing from a 'body ego'. consequently. stimulates ego development. a motor activity. we are justified in terming 'psychic ego'.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 illegal to copy. while re-delimiting. His work will. economically. It is the topographical composition of this context and the relations of its components to certain phases of the process of verbalization that require description. distribute or circulate it in any form. when he termed the ego 'predominantly a body-ego'. as has been shown in the present study. The relation between the function of verbalization and the other topographical institution responsible for occurrence and http://www. a silent process. Such content. to verbalize in the fashion expected of the neurotic become incontinent. He can therefore when requested. 3.org. in turn. The latter—no less psychic a formation than the former—can.fr/document. It is illegal to copy. or even only permitted. such transformation. The effect is verbal and vocal.28 - occur in the case of the normal and the neurotic. The central position of this formation in the whole of the ego was acknowledged by Freud.PEP Web . The possibility of distinguishing between two topographical components of the ego proper within the framework of Freud's topography of the psychic apparatus becomes evident if it is acknowledged that his original positing of the 'nucleus of the ego' as 'consisting of word-images'. and the response of the ego to this form of indirect excretory instinctual stimulation may be disruptive.pep-web. and bear much resemblance to that which we commonly try to avoid by refraining from penetrating interpretations. may well be thought of as nuclear functions of the ego. here designated as 'verbal' concerns the absorption of unconscious thought by the nuclear context of the psychic ego.-Cs. and the infantile subject of pathogenetic pre-genital strivings the owner.29 - constitution of the body-ego. on the other hand.sc. the more he succeeds in performing it with the help of the erotogeneity of those substitutes for. and its subsequent emendation. certain elements of the body-ego which (in varying a Freudian expression and its employment) can be described as 'prothetic'.univ-paris-diderot. Topographically verbalization. following Freud. distribute or circulate it in any form. a response by (speech-)motility to perception (of thought) is an ego-function and. and the analyst.rproxy. is. and his later ceding of this topographical position to the 'System Pcpt. 4. . Continence is then threatened instead of insured. instrumental in the appropriation by the ego of unconscious content.-Cs' are not merely the equivalent of a statement. These are elements of the 'object-world'—animate or inanimate—yet their cathexis is narcissistic. or extensions of. CONCLUSION The clinical data and theoretical considerations presented here lead to a metapsychological description of the rôle played by verbalization in the therapeutic process: 1. in analysis. its transformation into an object-libidinal one is a prerequisite. and is. Economically and dynamically verbalization. be the more effective. The aspect. to the restoration of the element proper in the body-ego. by requiring greater quantities of cathectic energy and by limiting the displaceability of the latter. therefore.g. in certain areas of the psychic organization—a development described by Freud as one 'from perception to mastery of instinct' and dependent upon the 'absorption of the instinct-representation by a (psychic) context'. describable as the acoustic materialization of these word-images is. while word-images may nevertheless be looked upon as the nuclear substratum of that part of the ego which. e. The functions ascribed to the system Pcpt. conditioned by processes of instinctual charge and discharge. which were recognized as dependent upon the erotogenic complexion of the body-ego. may allow 'ego' to overgrow 'auto-erotic' defects in the individual's erotogenic organization. theoretically. This dependence is mutual. differs from thinking. The release of regressive affect through the erotogenic employment of the speech-apparatus in verbalization. The 'vocal' aspect. 'instinct-representative' as it is. bring about a cathectic fusion of speech-apparatus and erotogenic zone instead of precipitating cathectic displacement from the latter upon the former. If attainable. far from enforcing the 'basic rule'. 2. as it were. These two component-institutions of the ego are reflected in two components of the auditory effect of verbalization. expressive of ideation and affect. self from environment. In the absence of such alterations a regressive body-ego remains resistive to restitution. a 'trial-acting with small energyquanta' (Freud). in the process of its appropriation.

who. J. distribute or circulate it in any form whatsoever. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. described in the text above.. . as the 'transformation of the derivatives of repressed unconscious thought into auditory word-images subject to external perception'. R.PEP Web . Help | About | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Problem WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the subscriber to PEP Web and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared.30 - Article Citation [Who Cited This?] Fliess. http://www. Int. ten years ago in a study 'On the Exceptional Position of the Auditory Sphere' developed the formula: '… just as the nucleus of the ego is the body-ego. It is illegal to copy. the superego. 30:21-30 Copyright © 2013. Psycho-Anal.univ-paris-diderot. Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule'.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 9 de 9 . that is responsible for these corrective effects.rproxy.org. distribute or circulate it in any form.' The auditory re-entry of certain verbal images into the psychic organization is indeed as precipitative of super-ego-formation as the re-entry of certain erotogenic elements into the context of organ-representations in consequence of the vocal release of regressive affect is originative of body-ego. Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 maintenance of repression. It is operative in a phase of verbalization.12 In either instance it is the psychosomatic nature of verbalization and the relations involved in the restitutive process.pep-web. as modified in the direction of a capacity for language is to be regarded as the nucleus of the super-ego.sc. (1949). It is illegal to copy. This transformation results in a stimulation of the auditory sphere of the patient—a sphere whose position in the topography of the psychic apparatus is nuclear to the superego. ————————————— 12 The clinical substantiation of this statement must be reserved for a separate publication. The establishment of this position is the work of Otto Isakower. is no less intimate and no less specific.fr/document. so the human auditory sphere.

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