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(1970). On Sigmund Freud's Dreams: By Alexander Grinstein. Detroit: Wayne State Univ. Press. 1968. Pp. 475.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 51:562.

(1970). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 51:562

On Sigmund Freud's Dreams: By Alexander Grinstein. Detroit: Wayne State Univ. Press. 1968. Pp. 475.

Freud, in the preface to the third (revised) English edition (1931) of his The Interpretation of Dreams, had categorically stated: 'It contains, even according to my present-day judgement, the most valuable of all the discoveries it has been my good fortune to make. Insight such as this falls to one's lot but once in a lifetime.' Since the publication of the Freud–Fliess Correspondence and Jones's biography, it is well known how much personal pain and effort of self-analysis went into the writing of that book.

Freud had deliberately, and justifiably, eschewed some of the more personal associations to his dream-material and quite often there are references to books and events that some 70 years later are perplexing in the extreme. Dr Grinstein has collated and integrated a vast amount of material that elucidates the myriad references in Freud's text. It is not Dr Grinstein's intention to offer arbitrary interpretations and wild-analysis of Freud's dreams. What interpretations he does offer from the correspondence of Freud and other personal material now available are, in his own words, 'really of secondary interest'. His major aim was to assemble available data since the book first appeared in 1900 that would yield 'a unity of psychic organization which could not be seen clearly in The Interpretation of Dreams' relating to each dream. Dr Grinstein achieves his task with an admirable reticence of encroachment on Freud's privacy without failing to provide the reader with complex and illuminating data, lucidly presented. Dr Grinstein's is an indispensable book towards a true comprehension of the material Freud so heroically risked to present of his own life and inner conflicts in The Interpretation of Dreams.

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