Page:Freud - The history of the psychoanalytic movement.djvu/50

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44
HISTORY OF THE PSYCHOANALYTIC MOVEMENT

acquired from the viewpoint of the ego and brought under the familiar categories of the same. It is then translated, changed, and as thoroughly misunderstood as happens in the case of dream-formation. Adler's theory is thus characterized less by what it asserts than by what it denies. It consequently consists of three elements of quite dissimilar value; first, good contributions to the psychology of the ego, which are superfluous but admissible; secondly, translations of analytical facts into the new jargon, and, thirdly, distortions and perversions of these facts when they do not fit into the ego presuppositions. The elements of the first kind have never been ignored by psychoanalysis, although it owed no special attention to them. Psychoanalysis had a greater interest in showing that all ego strivings are mixed with libidinous components. Adler's theory emphasizes the counterpart to it; namely, that all libidinous feeling contains an admixture of egotism. This would have been a palpable gain if Adler had not made use of this assertion to deny, every time, the libidinous feelings in favor of the impelling ego components. His theory thus does exactly what all patients do, and what our conscious thinking always does, it rationalizes, as Jones would say, in order to conceal the unconscious motives. Adler is so consistent in this, that he considers the object of evincing domination over the woman, to be on the top, as the mainspring of the sexual act. I do not know if he has upheld this monstrous idea in his writings.

Psychoanalysis early recognized that every neurotic symptom owes the possibility of its existence to some compromise. It must, therefore, also put to some good account the demands of the ego which manages the repression, it must offer it some advantages by finding for it some useful employment, otherwise it would suffer the same fate as the originally defended impulses. The term "morbid gain" expresses this state of affairs. One might even have been justified in differentiating the primary gain for the ego which must have been active at the origin, from a "secondary" gain which appears in connection with other intentions of the ego, when the symptom is about to assert itself. It has also long been known to analysis that the withdrawal of this morbid gain, or the cessation of the same