Generalized sum rules are derived by integrating the electromagnetic structure functions along lines of constant ratio of momentum and energy transfer. For non-relativistic systems these sum rules are related to the conventional photonuclear sum rules by a scaling transformation. The generalized sum rules are connected with the absorptive part of the forward scattering amplitude of virtual photons. The analytic structure of the scattering amplitudes and the possible existence of dispersion relations have been investigated in schematic relativistic and non-relativistic models. While for the non-relativistic case analyticity does not hold, the relativistic scattering amplitude is analytical for time-like (but not for space-like) photons and relations similar to the Gell-Mann-Goldberger-Thirring sum rule exist.