Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
:
Login
Tip: To refine search by publication year…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Having problems finding an article? Writing the year of its publication in Search for Words or Phrases in Context will help narrow your search.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Whitebook, J. (1996). The Psychoanalytic Mind: From Freud To Philosophy. By Marcia Cavell. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Univ. Press, 1993, 276 pp., $32.00.. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 44:986-995.

(1996). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 44:986-995

The Psychoanalytic Mind: From Freud To Philosophy. By Marcia Cavell. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Univ. Press, 1993, 276 pp., $32.00. Related Papers

Review by:
Joel Whitebook

A number of commentators have observed that Freud's attitude toward philosophy was deeply conflicted. With the exception of Plato—who was spared by being cast as a “poet-philosopher” (Freud, 1920p. 58)—Freud's pronouncements on the subject were almost uniformly negative. Along with religion, to which it played a not always distant second, philosophy, with its tendency toward the omnipotence of thoughts, had to be vigilantly criticized as a source of illusion. At the same time, however, we know that Freud had been so drawn to the field in his youth that he seriously considered pursuing a career in philosophy, and that “after making a lifelong detour through the natural sciences, medicine and psychotherapy(Freud, 1935p. 72), he returned to philosophical topics with a degree of speculative abandon that, at times, rivaled the presocratics. Indeed, the excessiveness of those flights suggests that his persistent hostility served as a reaction formation against his intense speculative impulses. He told Ernest Jones that “as a young man [he] felt a strong attraction toward speculation and ruthlessly checked it” (Gay, 1988p. 25). And it can be argued that his adoption of a tough-minded scientific self representation served as “a vital and even fertile illusion(Castoriadis, 1984p. 3) that enabled him to discipline his theoretical imagination and protected him from becoming a quack like his friend and mentor Wilhelm Fliess.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.