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

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

ORAL-EROTIC SILENCE (= diversion of speech-apparatus to the control of oral-erotogeneity).sc. sustaining or accompanying the silent period renders it understandable. The struggle is a more dramatic one. a 'silence malgré lui'. when capable of 'working through' his behaviour. The patient. simultaneous with this 'total incorporation of the undivided object' (Abraham). and doctrinaire. well-structured. 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. (1932). a more regressive one than that of urethral-erotic cessation of speech.. its interruptions imitate closure of the powerful sphincter-ani. the strivings discharged through the oral-erotogenic zone become. The individual has here lost speech because he has temporarily become an 'infant'. While effective before an audience. his very name from the fact that he is non-speaking. in other words. The remaining component of the ingestive instinctual action ('devouring'). Int. The silence appears 'interminable'.univ-paris-diderot. It occurs. cannibalistic. in other words. The complete lack of affect. The control of regressive affect has not. before going to sleep. The clinical picture of anal-erotic silence is. the resumption of speech when spontaneous occurs against an almost 'physical' resistance. symbolically) of an erotogenic occurrence. and when induced is often imitative of the original rage-response to an enema on the part of the child. distribute or circulate it in any form. but that it revert to its previous existence in an early infantile ego. J.rproxy. by exploiting the analytic situation in the service of a transference. the excretory process displaced upon speaking is pronouncedly 'peristaltic'. and conveys to the listener the impression that the patient had suddenly physically 'absented' himself. The interpolation of oral-erotic silence into verbalization is therefore indicative of the intrusion of a 'primal' transference into the transference-situation. its eventual termination is essentially a spontaneous one. as is commonly known. in other words. but it is of a different make-up. Freud: Female Sexuality. not only more regressive than the two previous types. in this instance. bears a resemblance to mutism. and felt compelled to induce a bowel movement every night. The patient. required of the speech-apparatus that it emulate sphincter-action.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 often than silence speech. lies either perfectly still or is quietly engaged in some form of pantomime. sometimes puzzling to the patient.fr/document. active as well as passive. the analytic situation for an 'intra-uterine' existence. in other words. III.7 The control of regressive affect through silence requires here of the speech-apparatus that it emulate anal-erotogeneity. of a genuine and truly unconquerable inability to speak. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. becomes therefore subject to the wish for incorporation. i. credibly.24 - only if a further complication is kept under consideration. can be accounted for ————————————— 7 Cf.PEP Web . that its nature is that of a 'primary identification'. through the insertion http://www. and inhibit 'excreting' it by exhibiting different degrees of 'verbal constipation'.pep-web. an excellent speaker. and that the ingestive activity of the child is the model for such identifications. such language is. . 281-297. as though it were solid. an individual who derives. when eventually distinguished from an ego. It is illegal to copy. informing either directly or indirectly (e. The object. versatile. preclusive of speaking and conducive to an erotogenic control of the earliest oral-libidinal and oral-aggressive instinctual strivings. was obsessed with the phantasy of observing urinary incontinence in a woman. The three basic types of partial-erotic silence shall be illustrated by two clinical examples. It is part of a struggle for or against verbalization. Psycho-Anal.org. inducing. temporarily. demanding mutual incorporation of both subject and object. and can indeed rarely be terminated through admonition. 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. the word. informs one afterwards. The stoppage appears 'involuntary'. In the pure type of oralerotic silence. We have learned from Freud that the earliest relation to the parent-object is not object-libidinal but narcissistic. however. however. Thus the analyst is ingested. The patient. 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. The oral-erotic type of silence is. he has ceased to exist for the moment as an object in the outside world and his suggestive influence is suspended. treat the excretory product. unsuited for analysis since it is almost preclusive of freeassociation. without recognizable motivation.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 4 de 9 . practised wetting perversions. has exchanged.g.e. 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. as well as motive. 13. naturally. It is in consequence of this radical transformation that the patient is suddenly silent. the patient discharges these strivings. If the speech-apparatus is to be thought of as emulating the once dominant oral-erotic zone.

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

who had actually been afraid of killing himself by 'going backward'. quoting the pertinent parts. within one year. should be as old as I am. precipitated acute depressions.org. Nevertheless I had the feeling that you enjoyed the "cure" too. of the instinctual make-up of the pure type of oral-erotic silence.rproxy. Hamlet's answer confirms this interpretation and duplicates that of the patient. in the analyst's office. see p. yet I hold it not honesty to have it thus set down. both. so it appeared. '… The sensation of your naked body (especially your stomach) against me was so thrilling that I was almost numb. on the contrary. 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. 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). complete inactivity for enjoyable and successful activity in almost all realms of her life. It is illegal to copy.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. subject and object of the wish. …' The inability of this patient to associate freely has so far precluded the analysis of her dreams. though I most powerfully and potently believe. you could go backward. The effects of her treatment. not having to speak to the partner and employing mouth as well as vagina for contact. while crossing the room in order to get an ashtray).' If it is remembered that anal-erotic silence has been characterized as unbreakable. put your hand between my legs and gave a firm push against my vagina. The unconscious infantile dreamwish fundamental to the dream. It was not only a sexual delight but almost a spiritual one. Sir. It felt good. distribute or circulate it in any form. Sir. my lord?' HAMLET: 'Into my grave ?' Both question and answer are illustrative of the tenets set forth in the text.26 - quasi-mood identified to herself as 'that certain feeling'. in contrast to those had by children. is nevertheless quite transparent because its representation is a typical one and well known. as has Abraham's clinical observation and the result of Sharpe's genetic investigation.) POLONIUS: '… Will you walk out of the air. …') will be appreciated as a means of acquainting the audience with the protagonist's silent thought. coincident with her treatment.) To the second serious attempt on the part of the analyst to convince this patient of the interference. whose unconscious incorporation had from the beginning on. is ordered to be silent. The dreamer finds herself. The description of partial-erotic silence—a phase of regressive partial-erotic language —has been presented here. Polonius' reaction. (She mentioned consequently. like a crab. 28. prohibitive and competitive mother had been replaced by that of the analyst. A digest of it.ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 6 de 9 . HAMLET: '… All of which.PEP Web . which enabled her to exchange. (Act II. of 'being in it'.sc. inasmuch as the subject refuses to supply the omitted thought. . was a long one. and—to quote from the report. are conceived of as phallic and the instinctual action (triebhandlung) appears in its characteristic attenuation to 'touching'. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. I woke up then and felt ecstatic. In the dream I was led to believe by you that this was some sort of treatment —a part of my analysis. as far as it was describable.univ-paris-diderot. The apparent incongruency between the generalization that verbalization in analysis implies regressive instinctual discharge and thereby http://www. in which the analyst is referred to in the second person—'You knelt down next to me. as one of the most pleasant features of her first sexual experience. The dream. The latter consisted. in the experience of complete motor-inhibition combined with the wish to 'creep into something' or of the phantasy. is sufficient for the present purpose. however. for you yourself.pep-web. 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. endorsed and in the same breath disowned by Hamlet ('… All of which … though I believe. late in the evening. 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. rendered previously by the writer. 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 order to demonstrate that such language exists. The dream is expressive of the pre-oedipal wish to enter the mother. by her frequent interruptions of verbalization. been consummated so avidly that the mere turning of his back to the patient (for example. The patient feels 'warm and cosy'. 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. however. here reported. Scene 2. 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.fr/document. This mutual incorporation. yet I hold it not honesty to have it … set down. her leg slips off the couch and hangs down from the side without a shoe. … The thrill was one that passed over my whole being (no specific area). if. Shakespeare's invention of a text. …' Patient and analyst look at each other. is represented by the dreamer as an alternative to verbalization —a representation in full accordance with that. and in speaking. with an analysis. were due to a 'substitution therapy' by which the persisting influence of a phobic. Italics mine.

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

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

J. that is responsible for these corrective effects. as modified in the direction of a capacity for language is to be regarded as the nucleus of the super-ego. R. 30:21-30 Copyright © 2013. Psycho-Anal. so the human auditory sphere.pep-web. distribute or circulate it in any form. It is illegal to copy. distribute or circulate it in any form whatsoever. It is illegal to copy. the superego. who.Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule' 02-05-13 22:59 maintenance of repression. Int. 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. 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. is no less intimate and no less specific.sc. (1949). Silence and Verbalization: A Supplement to the Theory of the 'Analytic Rule'. WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the PEPWeb subscriber and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. http://www. It is operative in a phase of verbalization.30 - Article Citation [Who Cited This?] Fliess. Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing. 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.' 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.rproxy.fr/document. described in the text above.org. The establishment of this position is the work of Otto Isakower. ————————————— 12 The clinical substantiation of this statement must be reserved for a separate publication. as the 'transformation of the derivatives of repressed unconscious thought into auditory word-images subject to external perception'..PEP Web . .ph…or%2Cfliess%2C+robert%7Cviewperiod%2Cweek%7Csort%2Cauthor%2Ca#hit1 Página 9 de 9 .univ-paris-diderot.12 In either instance it is the psychosomatic nature of verbalization and the relations involved in the restitutive process.

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