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Rosenfeld, E.M. (1964). My Sister, my Spouse. A Biography of Lou Andreas-Salomé By H. F. Peters. (New York: Norton, 1962. Pp. 300. $5.00.). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 45:134-135.

(1964). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 45:134-135

My Sister, my Spouse. A Biography of Lou Andreas-Salomé By H. F. Peters. (New York: Norton, 1962. Pp. 300. $5.00.)

Review by:
Eva M. Rosenfeld

Professor Peters has written a beautiful and convincing book about a most distinguished woman who devoted her mature years to the study and practice of psycho-analysis. My advice to all analysts would be to take their copies along as a guide on their holidays in Europe, 'the Europe that Was' and—we hope—always will be, however much its political and economic face may change. Can anyone doubt that Lou Andreas-Salomé (of French-German-Russian descent) presents a true image of Germany's eternal East-West split? In looks and temperament, in her vitality and egocentricity she belonged to the East. In her wisdom, clarity of mind and relentless search for improvement she was a child of Western civilization at its best. The author opens a window through which the reader may view without prejudice and with never-flagging interest, the pageant of Lou's life.

It adds much to Professor Peters' credit and to our enjoyment that he refrains from analytical interpretations or reconstructions of the motivations of her strange life history. He must rightly have felt that her younger years, in which so much happened that seemed inexplicable, were best left to speak their own language. So much so that when he speaks of unconscious processes, he calls them 'the sub -conscious', a word he would not find in our analytic vocabulary. But this does not matter. What he conveys is a climate in which people were individuals and had a destiny. This destiny we are wont today to call a 'neurosis'.

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