Article ID: CBB181861381

Seeking Double Personality: Nakamura Kokyō's Work in Abnormal Psychology in Early 20th-Century Japan (2020)


This paper examines Nakamura Kokyō's study of a woman with a split personality who lived in his home as a maid from 1917 until her death in 1940. She was his indispensable muse and assistant in his efforts to promote abnormal psychology and psychotherapy. This paper first explores the central position of multiple personality in Nakamura's theory of the subconscious, which was largely based on the model of dissociation. It then examines how it became a central issue in Nakamura's disputes with religions including the element of spirit possession, which invoked Western psychical research to modernize their doctrines. While both were concerned with the subconscious and alterations in personality, Nakamura's psychological view was distinguished from those spiritual understandings by his emphasis on individual memories, particularly those that were traumatic, and hysteria. The remaining sections of the paper will examine Nakamura's views on memory and hysteria, which conflicted with both the academic mainstream and the established cultural beliefs. This conflict may partly explain the limited success of Nakamura's academic and social campaigns.

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Authors & Contributors
Wu, Yu-chuan
Andrick, John M.
Birman, Joel
Cerri, Mark M.
Collins, Alan F.
Harding, Christopher
History of Psychology
History of Psychiatry
Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences
Bulletin of the History of Medicine
East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal
Saybrook Graduate School and Research Center
Psychology Press
University of California, San Diego
Edizioni Anicia
Science and religion
Freud, Sigmund
Andrade, Mário de
Janet, Pierre
Jung, Carl Gustav
Moore, Thomas Verner
Myers, Frederic William Henry
Time Periods
20th century, early
19th century
20th century
20th century, late
21st century
Great Britain
Chicago (Illinois, U.S.)
New York (U.S.)
Columbia University

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