From No Subject - Encyclopedia of Psychoanalysis
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Nostalgia (Sehnsucht) refers to the moral pain of the expatriate when he is overcome with the obsession of return. The self-absorption, morosity, and feeling that there is nothing more to say about the situation are the first clinical manifestations of a secret torment that is likely to become aggravated. A state of desolation and physical malaise is soon established, which is fertile ground for infection and functional disorders, as if the subject's vitality had been sapped. In eighteenth- and nineteenth-century medical practice, this...