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Dr. Freud: a life.

Ferris, Paul.

ISBN 10: 185619390X / ISBN 13: 9781856193900
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Titel: Dr. Freud: a life.

Einband: Hardcover

Zustand des Schutzumschlags: Dust Jacket Included


London : Sinclair Stevenson,1997. Orig. cloth binding. Dustjacket. xvi,464 pp. Index. Condition : very good. ISBN 185619390X [KEYWORDS: PSYCHOLOGY, Freud, Sigmund (1856-1939). Buchnummer des Verkäufers 114654

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Inhaltsangabe: This startling book provides new insight into an increasingly controversial figure whose work has left an indelible mark on the modern world

Today, nearly sixty years after his death, the field of psychoanalysis still swarms with controversy about Sigmund Freud's career. His work has been picked apart by fellow theorists, who seek either to canonize his intellectual prowess or to vilify both the man and his work.

Paul Ferris's new biography avoids this fashionable polemic, attending to the details of Freud's personal existence. A balanced, fair-minded work, free from the technicalities of psychoanalytic jargon, Dr. Freud is a robust and sympathetic portrait-a stunning look at a complex soul.

Rezension: There are so many biographies of Sigmund Freud, not to mention the mountains of scholarly matter surrounding his theories, that it's hard to imagine a fresh, readable, convincing new approach to his life and work. Paul Ferris--an outsider who has never been psychoanalyzed, much less trained as an analyst--has done the trick. Agnostic about the true value of Freud's achievements, Ferris prefers to proceed on the reasonable assumption that Freud is worth studying sheerly because of his overarching influence on our culture. Consequently, the early chapters involve some fence-sitting, with unnamed fanatical acolytes and critics alike held at arm's length.

But nothing is so striking as the extent to which this mainstream biographer has learned the lessons of Freud's harshest critics. There is no apology--and not much surprise even--in the description of Freud's entanglement with (and indefensible defense of) the homicidal quack Wilhelm Fliess. Whatever else one may admire in Freud, Ferris has no trouble being straightforward about shabby motives, unprofessional behavior, or Freud's arrogance in matters about which he was sometimes almost comically ignorant. What praise this biography does have to offer, meanwhile, is qualified. Ferris says Freud's great achievement was getting us to take sex seriously, but seems to admit that he may have replaced ignorance with confusion. He also expresses well-grounded awe for Freud's writing ability and productivity, but implies, in a well-judged chapter on the Dora case, both that the application of his writing talent to science was a serious loss to imaginative literature and that losing him to literature might have been a blessed release for some of his patients. --Richard Farr

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