First English citation of "autism" (August 1912)
Bapopik at AOL.COM
Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sat Dec 14 20:31:56 UTC 2002
This is important to me. I have an autistic nephew.
OED's first English citation of "autism" is the AMERICAN JOURNAL of INSANITY, Vol. LXIX, pg. 879. A date of 1912 is given.
I re-checked this:
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF INSANITY
By PROF. E. BLEULER
Director Psychiatric Cinic, University of Zurich
*Address delivered at the opening exercises of the Henry Phipps Psychiatric Clinic, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Md., April 16-18, 1913.
There is no doubt that Bleurer coined "autism," but we have a wrong date here.
I looked in the NEW YORK STATE HOSPITALS BULLETIN, February 1912, pg. 481, "AFFECTIVITY, SUGGESTIBILITY, PARANOIA" by E. Bleuler and Charles Ricksher, but "autism" wasn't found in his very long article.
N. Y. STATE HOSPITALS BULLETIN
Vol. V, No. 2
REVIEW OF BLEULER'S SCHIZOPHRENIA.*
By DR. AUGUST HOCH
*"Handbuch der Psychiatrie." Herausgegeben von Professor Dr. G. Aschaffenburg. Spezieller Teil, 4 Abteilung, 1 Halfte. "Dementia Praecox oder Gruppe der Schizophrenien." Leipzig und Wien: Franz Deuticke, 1911.
He also mentions abnormalities of the affective life, particularly a more or less extensive loss of interest, and that which he calls by a very good term "autism," that is, the tendency to turn away from the outside world, or that which we have called shut-in tendencies. He also mentions other features, but these are the most important.
A difficult subject is _autism_. By autism Bleuler means that which we have called the shut-in tendency, the more or less complete shutting out of the environment, or, at any rate, all that which does not correspond to the wishes. It may be so marked that the patients even shut all sensory impressions, close their eyes and ears, make their body as small as possible by crouching. Bleuler regards this autism as a secondary phenomenon, and looks upon it as one of the results of his association disorder, whereas the autistic thinking is the day dreaming, the thinking without reference to reality. This autistic thinking flourishes in schizophrenia. The normal person includes in his logical operations more or less everything of his experience, past and present, which has a bearing, irrespective of it emotional value. Bleuler thinks that the schizophrenic defect in logic makes the exclusion of a great many external and internal facts possible, and thus gives sway to a tendency which we all have, namely, to live in fancies which suit us, (Pg. 254) something which we indulge in but do not allow to influence our conduct, but which in the schizophrenic assumes the value of reality.
_Automatisms_ are put on the same level as hallucinations, that is to say, are looked upon as intrusions into consciousness of split-off complexes, whereas mannerisms are essentially the same as Freud's _Symptomhandlungen_.
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