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Roazen, P. (1982). Paul Roazen on Errors Regarding Freud. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 63:260-261.

(1982). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 63:260-261

Paul Roazen on Errors Regarding Freud

Paul Roazen

DEAR SIR,

The occasion for the letter of K. R. Eissler (1981) about 'errors' in my work is baffling. He selected four points from an unpublished paper, before it got 'buried in the vaults' of the Library of Congress.

Your readers may be less mystified by knowing some facts about the vast collection which the Freud Archives, of which Eissler is the leading figure, has deposited in Washington, D.C. After the year 2000 the bulk of the important material will start to be open for inspection, and then scholars of every persuasion will be free to examine the original Freud. But what is one to make of a system of classification which restricts one of Freud's letters to his deceased eldest son until 2013, and another until 2032? It is remarkable with what precision it is possible to calculate the preservation of privacy (or maintain idealizations about Freud). Josef Breuer must have had something interesting to say for a letter to be sealed until 2102.

The fate of Freud's papers, and how secrecy lends support to myth-making about him, are more important than the four points Eissler makes against me; but they are inter-connected.

1. The issue of Tausk's height illustrates Eissler's carelessness. He erroneously quotes me as having written that Tausk was 'extremely tall'; but Eissler has confused Tausk (1975), (1977), (1979) with Jung.

Eissler turns to Freud's sensitivity about his height. He calls it a 'bizarre' claim that when the group photograph at the Weimar Congress was taken, Freud stood on a box.

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