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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

distinguished gynecologist, the late Dr. Engelmann, of Boston, wrote to 

me, "of very attractive young married women--one having had a child, the 

other a miscarriage--who were both absolutely cold to their husbands, as 

told me by both husband and wife. They could not understand desire or 

passion, and would not even believe that it existed. Yet, both these women 

with other men developed ardent passion, all the stronger perhaps because 

it had been so long latent." In such cases it is scarcely necessary to 

invoke Adler's theory of a morbid inhibition, or "foreign body in 

consciousness," which has to be overcome. We are simply in the presence of 

the natural fact that the female throughout nature not only requires much 

loving, but is usually fastidious in the choice of a lover. In the human 

species this natural fact is often disguised and perverted. Women are not 

always free to choose the man whom they would prefer as a lover, nor even 

free to find out whether the man they prefer sexually fits them; they are, 

moreover, very often extremely ignorant of the whole question of sex, and 

the victims of the prejudice and false conventions they have been taught. 

On the one hand, they are driven into an unnatural primness and austerity; 

on the other hand, they rebound to an equally unnatural facility or even 

promiscuity. Thus it happens that the men who find that a large number of 

women are not so facile as they themselves are, and as they have found a 

large number of women to be, rush to the conclusion that women tend to be 

"sexually anesthetic." If we wish to be accurate, it is very doubtful 

whether we can assert that a woman is ever absolutely without the aptitude 

for sexual satisfaction.[159] She may unquestionably be without any 

conscious desire for actual coitus. But if we realize to how large an 

extent woman is a sexual organism, and how diffused and even unconscious 

the sexual impulses may be, it becomes very difficult to assert that she 

has never shown any manifestation of the sexual impulse. All we can assert 

with some degree of positiveness in some cases is that she has not 

manifested sexual gratification, more particularly as shown by the 

occurrence of the orgasm, but that is very far indeed from warranting us 

to assert that she never will experience such gratification or still less 

that she is organically incapable of experiencing it.[160] It is therefore 

quite impossible to follow Adler when he asks us to accept the existence 

of a condition which he solemnly terms _anaesthesia sexualis completa 

idiopathica_, in which there is no mechanical difficulty in the way or 

psychic inhibition, but an "absolute" lack of sexual sensibility and a 

complete absence of sexual inclination.[161] 

 

It is instructive to observe that Adler himself knows no "pure" case of 

this condition. To find such a case he has to go back nearly two centuries 

to Madame de Warens, to whom he devotes a whole chapter. He has, 

moreover, had the courage in writing this chapter to rely entirely on 

Rousseau's _Confessions_, which were written nearly half a century later 

than the episodes they narrated, and are therefore full of inaccuracies, 

besides being founded on an imperfect and false knowledge of Madame de 

Warens's earlier life, and written by a man who was, there can be no 

doubt, not able to arouse women's passions. Adler shows himself completely 

ignorant of the historical investigations of De Montet, Mugnier, Ritter, 

and others which, during recent years, have thrown a flood of light on the 

life and character of Madame de Warens, and not even acquainted with the 

highly significant fact that she was hysterical.[162] This is the basis of 

"fact" on which we are asked to accept _anaesthesia sexualis completa 

idiopathica!_[163] 

 

"In dealing with the alleged absence of the sexual impulse," a 

well-informed medical correspondent writes from America, "much 

caution has to be used in accepting statements as to its absence, 


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