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Weiss, E. (1951). Paul Federn. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 32:242-246.

(1951). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 32:242-246

Paul Federn

Edoardo Weiss

Dr. Paul Federn was one of those individuals possessing a rare combination of qualities and personal characteristics that make it possible to at once be a good father and family man, a warm and intimate friend, a humanitarian, a teacher, and a true scientist. My acquaintance with Dr. Federn spanned a period of forty-two years from the time I first met him in 1908 until the time of his death in 1950. During this period I had the opportunity to work with him as student and as colleague, and I came to realize how rare a personality he was.

In his early years he was strongly influenced by the personality of his father, Solomon Federn, a distinguished Viennese physician. It was his father who did pioneer work in the field of measurement of blood pressure and who was jokingly referred to as 'Blutdruck Federn'. This same spirit of pioneering and of original creative work in new fields of science is apparent in the specific contributions of Paul Federn in his studies on psychosis and in his significant development of new and challenging concepts in the field of ego psychology.

He was a devoted husband and father. His wife was a former patient of his from his days as a general physician before he had developed an interest in analysis. Theirs was a very happy marriage; a close and warm relationship which lasted until her death shortly after his first operation. Knowing as he did that she was chronically ill, her death still came as a profound shock to him. He survived her by less than half a year.

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