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Brierley, M. (1957). Sigmund Freud. Four Centenary Addresses: By Ernest Jones. (New York: Basic Books Inc.; London: Tavistock Publications, 1956. Pp. 150. $3.75 or 18s.). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 38:282-283.

(1957). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 38:282-283

Sigmund Freud. Four Centenary Addresses: By Ernest Jones. (New York: Basic Books Inc.; London: Tavistock Publications, 1956. Pp. 150. $3.75 or 18s.)

Review by:
Marjorie Brierley

These addresses were delivered as a part of the 1956 Freud Centenary celebrations, three of them in response to invitations from the United States of America and the fourth as a B.B.C. broadcast from London.

The first is the sixth Freud Anniversary lecture to the New York Psychoanalytical Society and Institute; it is entitled 'The Nature of Genius', though Ernest Jones suggests that it could be described more exactly as 'Some of the Factors Conditioning the Workings of Certain Forms of Productive Thinking'. After briefly surveying the literature and mentioning the features of intuitive inspiration, spontaneity, and periodicity that seem to occur with all forms of genius, the author considers other features that are most characteristic of scientific production—absolute honesty of thought, originality, and power of concentration. Freud's love of truth carried with it a 'mysterious feeling for what is true' and 'a sense of the really significant'. His originality consisted less in the discovery of completely new things than in their bold and detailed investigation. He did not so much invent ideas as introduce a totally new attitude and inaugurate a new 'climate of opinion' about human nature. His capacity for concentration was well known to his family.

The moment of illumination in scientific thinking is preceded by intensive preparatory work that must be motivated by strong unconscious impulses, and there must be some 'special coincidence' between these drives and the 'objective problem'.

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