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December 1927


Author Affiliations

Assistant Professor of Neurology and Chief of Clinic of Psychiatry, New York Post-Graduate Medical School and Hospital; Visiting Physician, Manhattan State Hospital, Ward's Island; Attending Neurologist, Vanderbilt Clinic, Columbia University. NEW YORK

Arch NeurPsych. 1927;18(6):1015-1023. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1927.02210060150005

Modern psychiatry stresses the importance of studying in detail the mental content. The delusions of psychoses, the symptoms of neuroses and many conduct disorders are more intelligible when the fantasy life of the patient is investigated. Not all fantasies are pathologic. Indeed, for the maintenance of mental health a certain degree of fantasy is essential. From its roots plans are formed, and acts result if nurtured in the atmosphere of reality. However, normal fantasy becomes abnormal when uninfluenced by reality, as indicated in this study of the fantasy of not belonging to one's family, which finds expression not only in the malignant but in the benign mental disorders as well as in the borderline group.

Patients who come for analysis frequently volunteer, not without some hesitation, the fantasy, in one form or another of not belonging to the family. The information is imparted falteringly, and they attempt to conceal embarrassment

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