Main  Contacts  
Table of contents
CONTENTS
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-1
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-2
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-3
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-4
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-5
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-6
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-7
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-8
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-9
ANALYSIS OF THE SEXUAL IMPULSE-10
FOOTNOTES
LOVE AND PAIN-1.1
LOVE AND PAIN-1.2
LOVE AND PAIN-1.3
LOVE AND PAIN-1.4
LOVE AND PAIN-1.5
LOVE AND PAIN-1.6
LOVE AND PAIN-2.1
LOVE AND PAIN-2.2
LOVE AND PAIN-2.3
LOVE AND PAIN-2.4
LOVE AND PAIN-3.1
LOVE AND PAIN-3.2
LOVE AND PAIN-3.3
LOVE AND PAIN-3.4
LOVE AND PAIN-4
LOVE AND PAIN-5.1
LOVE AND PAIN-5.2
LOVE AND PAIN-6.1
LOVE AND PAIN-6.2
LOVE AND PAIN-7
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.1
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.2
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.3
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.4
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.5
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-1.6
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-2.1
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-2.2
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-2.3
THE SEXUAL IMPULSE IN WOMEN-3
APPENDIX A-1
APPENDIX A-2-3
APPENDIX B HISTORY-1
APPENDIX B HISTORY-2
APPENDIX B HISTORY-3-4-5-6-7
APPENDIX B HISTORY-8-9-10
APPENDIX B HISTORY-11-12
APPENDIX B HISTORY-13
APPENDIX B HISTORY-14-15
APPENDIX B HISTORY-16
APPENDIX B HISTORY-17
APPENDIX B HISTORY-18
APPENDIX B HISTORY-19
INDEX OF AUTHORS

frequent. 

 

It is worthy of note that not only fear, but even so depressing an emotion 

as grief, may act as a sexual stimulant, more especially in women. This 

fact is not sufficiently recognized, though probably everyone can recall 

instances from his personal knowledge, such cases being generally regarded 

as inexplicable. It is, however, not more surprising that grief should be 

transformed into sexual emotion than that (as in a case recorded by 

Stanley Hall) it should manifest itself as anger. In any case we have to 

bear in mind the frequency of this psychological transformation in the 

presence of cases which might otherwise seem to call for a cynical 

interpretation. 

 

The case has been recorded of an English lady of good social 

position who fell in love with an undertaker at her father's 

funeral and insisted on marrying him. It is known that some men 

have been so abnormally excited by the funeral trappings of death 

that only in such surroundings have they been able to effect 

coitus. A case has been recorded of a physician of unimpeachable 

morality who was unable to attend funerals, even of his own 

relatives, on account of the sexual excitement thus aroused. 

Funerals, tragedies at the theater, pictures of martyrdom, scenes 

of execution, and trials at the law-courts have been grouped 

together as arousing pleasure in many people, especially women. 

(C.F. von Schlichtegroll, _Sacher-Masoch und der Masochismus_, 

pp. 30-31.) Wakes and similar festivals may here find their 

psychological basis, and funerals are an unquestionable source of 

enjoyment among some people, especially of so-called "Celtic" 

race. The stimulating reaction after funerals is well known to 

many, and Leigh Hunt refers to this (in his _Autobiography_) as 

affecting the sincerely devoted friends who had just cremated 

Shelley. 

 

It may well be, as Kiernan has argued (_Alienist and 

Neurologist_, 1891; ibid., 1902, p. 263), that in the disturbance 

of emotional balance caused by grief the primitive instincts 

become peculiarly apt to respond to stimulus, and that in the 

aboulia of grief the mind is specially liable to become the prey 

to obsessions. 

 

"When my child died at the age of 6 months," a correspondent 

writes, "I had a violent paroxysm of weeping and for some days I 

could not eat. When I kissed the dead boy for the last time (I 

had never seen a corpse before) I felt I had reached the depths 

of misery and could never smile or have any deep emotions again. 

Yet that night, though my thoughts had not strayed to sexual 

subjects since the child's death, I had a violent erection. I 

felt ashamed to desire carnal things when my dead child was still 

in the house, and explained to my wife. She was sympathetic, for 

her idea was that our common grief had intensified my love for 

her. I feel convinced, however, that my desire was the result of 

a stimulus propagated to the sexual centers from the centers 

affected by my grief, the transference of my emotion from one set 

of nerves to another. I do not perhaps express my meaning 

clearly." 

 

How far the emotional influence of grief entered into the 

following episode it is impossible to say, for here it is 

probable that we are mainly concerned with one of those almost 

irresistible impulses by which adolescent girls are sometimes 

overcome. The narrative is from the lips of a reliable witness, a 

railway guard, who, some thirty years ago, when a youth of 18, in 

Cornwall, lodged with a man and woman who had a daughter of his 

own age. Some months later, when requiring a night's lodging, he 

called at the house, and was greeted warmly by the woman, who 

told him her husband had just died and that she and her daughter 

were very nervous and would be glad if he would stay the night, 


Page 2 from 4:  Back   1  [2]  3   4   Forward