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Tarachow, S. (1950). 'Freud's Scientific Beginnings.': Siegfried Bernfeld.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 31:207.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: 'Freud's Scientific Beginnings.': Siegfried Bernfeld.

(1950). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 31:207

'Freud's Scientific Beginnings.': Siegfried Bernfeld.

Sidney Tarachow

The American Imago, Vol. 6, No. 3, pp. 163–196.

This paper is a consideration of the early years of Freud's scientific life, from 1873, when he began his medical studies, to 1885, three years after he went into practice. Although as a boy Freud had had fantasies of having power over men, at seventeen these gave way to a deep interest in the mysteries of the natural world: he decided to study biology. In Brücke's laboratory Freud made a good study of the Reissner cells in the spinal cord of the fish Petromyzon, pointing out their relationship to the dorsal spinal roots and indicating their evolutionary position in the vertebrate scale by remarking the mixture of unipolar and bipolar processes. An obscure paragraph in an early paper shows that he foresaw the neurone theory.

Freud did some work in the laboratories of Claus in 1876 and of Stricker in 1885. He deprecated his work under Claus, and his work on cocaine with Stricker was a failure. The writer suggests that Freud could not work under Claus because the latter was the same age as Freud's half-brother, the target of Freud's hostility, while Brücke was the same age as Freud's father, towards whom Freud had arrived at an attitude of love. Brücke, the beloved father, assigned Freud anatomical tasks and reserved the more aggressive and brutal observations of the higher wisdom of physiology for himself. Later, when Freud worked in Stricker's laboratory, he was already severely inhibited in the direction of physiology. He also did some good work in developing new histological staining methods and in translation, both unaggressive from the standpoint of physiological research.

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Article Citation

Tarachow, S. (1950). 'Freud's Scientific Beginnings.'. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 31:207

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