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Grotjahn, M. (1941). Applied: Otto Fenichel. 'Psychoanalysis of Antisemitism.' The American Imago, 1940, Vol. I, No. 2, pp. 24–39.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 22:77-78.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Applied: Otto Fenichel. 'Psychoanalysis of Antisemitism.' The American Imago, 1940, Vol. I, No. 2, pp. 24–39.

(1941). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 22:77-78

Applied: Otto Fenichel. 'Psychoanalysis of Antisemitism.' The American Imago, 1940, Vol. I, No. 2, pp. 24–39.

Martin Grotjahn

If one wishes to understand antisemitism, sociological, historical and political points of view must be employed as well as the psychological one. Starting with a 'scapegoat theory', the author asks why the Jews are so suitable as displacement substitutes. The strangeness of the Jews is of a special kind because of its archaic character, which is combined with indisputable mental superiority in certain fields. The antisemite uses his image of the Jew so that he shall not become aware of certain tendencies in himself. Strangeness is what the Jews and one's own instincts have in common. Circumcision, which is strange and familiar in the unconscious depths, works in the same way as the other customs which make the Jew suitable for a devil-projection.

The paper was written before Freud's book Moses and Monotheism was published. The motives for the psychology of antisemitism which Freud mentions are partly identical with those discussed by Fenichel. But Freud adds that the reproach 'The Jews have killed our God' really means that the Jews do not admit that they have killed God. Freud also mentions that the other people feel a kind of sibling-rivalry toward the 'favoured

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child', and that hatred against the Jews is unconsciously partly a hatred against Christianity.

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Article Citation

Grotjahn, M. (1941). Applied. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 22:77-78

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