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Solnit, A.J. (1983). Anna Freud's Contributions to Child and Applied Analysis. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 64:379-390.

(1983). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 64:379-390

Anna Freud's Contributions to Child and Applied Analysis

Albert J. Solnit


Anna Freud died in London on 9 October 1982, shortly before her 89th birthday. Born in Vienna, Austria on 3 December 1895, the youngest of six children of Sigmund and Martha Freud, she was the only one to become a psychoanalyst. Anna Freud was her father's psychoanalytic heir. She was educated at the College Lyceum, a Viennese girls' school where she also taught for many years, exercising a strong influence on teacher training and directly on many of the teachers. During this period she also began a training analysis, and in 1922, at 26 years of age, she became a member of the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society. She practised, taught and took a leading role in that Society until the Nazis forced her and her family to leave in 1938 because the Freuds were Jewish.

It is only nine months since Anna Freud died but it is not too early to know that by her example and her written work, she has left us a priceless heritage for the practice and theory of psychoanalysis.

In speaking of Anna Freud's contributions, I have elected to use her words whenever possible. The clarity of her own writings and formulations can seldom be improved. Overall, I consider Anna Freud's work in terms of: (1) her role as guardian and advocate of and enriching contributor to her father as the creator of psychoanalysis; (2) as pioneer in establishing child psychoanalysis; and (3) as an original, natural scientist and psychoanalyst.

Anna Freud's contributions, at the outset, can be viewed in three overlapping sectors:


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