Page:Freud - The history of the psychoanalytic movement.djvu/14

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appeared, he took me aside and disclosed to me that the patient's anxiety was due to the fact that though she had been married eighteen years, she was still a virgo intacta, that her husband was utterly impotent. In such cases the physician can only cover the domestic mishap with his reputation and must bear it if people shrug their shoulders and say of him: "He is not a good doctor if in all these years, he has not been able to cure her." He added: "The only prescription for such troubles is the one well-known to us, but which we cannot prescribe. It is:

Penis normalis

I had never heard of such a prescription and would like to have shaken my head at my informant's cynicism.

I certainly have not uncovered the illustrious origins of this vicious idea because I would like to shove the responsibility for it on others. I know well that it is one thing to express an idea once or several times in the form of a rapid aperçu, and quite another to take it seriously and literally to lead it through all opposing details and conquer for it a place among accepted truths. It is the difference between a light flirtation and a righteous marriage with all its duties and difficulties. Epouser les ideés de—(to marry so and so's ideas,) is, at least in French, a quite usual form of speech.

Other doctrines which were contributed to the cathartic method through my efforts thus transforming it into psychoanalysis, are the following: The theories of repression and resistance, the addition of the infantile sexuality, and the usage and interpretation of dreams for the understanding of the unconscious.

Concerning the theory of repression, I was certain that I worked independently. I knew of no influence that directed me in any way to it, and I long considered this idea to be original, till O. Rank showed us the place in Schopenhauer's "The World as Will and Idea," where the philosopher is struggling for an explanation for in-