Article

La lutte de l'adolescent contre la masturbation

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Abstract

The Struggle of Adolescents against Masturbation This article published in 1926 in the new progressive review Zeitscgrift für psychaonalytisck Pädagogik was translated by Balint himself in his work Human Pleasure and Behaviour, Maresfield Library, 1967, and we address our thanks here to the editor, Mark Paterson, London, for allowing us to publish the translation of this into French. Balint’s aim here – in the most broad educational sense (teachers, doctors, social workers) – is to spread analytical knowledge outside the narrow circle of psychoanalysts, and that same year he set up a course for GPs on the laws governing the functioning of the psyche. This, the third phase of self-eroticism (after breast feeding and the Oedipal phase) awakens a feeling of guilt in the teenager who may try to give the activity up out of a desire to reach an ideal. The difficulty of this struggle depends on the adolescent’s psychic structure (be it normal, hysterical or obsessive). The desire for purity between the conflict with the ‘assaults of puberty’pushes the adolescent to create diverse unconscious ‘tricks’to continue to indulge in this pleasure.

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