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Leavy, S.A. (1984). The Legend of Freud: Samuel Weber. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. 1982. Pp. 173.. Int. R. Psycho-Anal., 11:124-126.

(1984). International Review of Psycho-Analysis, 11:124-126

The Legend of Freud: Samuel Weber. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press. 1982. Pp. 173.

Review by:
Stanley A. Leavy

The dedication of this book to Jacques Derrida serves warning on the reader that despite the title, this is not a gossipy account of Freud's life; and that a colourful narrative is not assured by the reproduction on the cover, presumably from a Greek vase painting of the god Hephaistos astride an ithyphallic mule (for surely these are not the ears of a horse). On the contrary, Samuel Weber, who teaches in the Humanities Center of Johns Hopkins University, and was formerly a member of the faculty of the Free University of Berlin, here undertakes a highly abstract deconstructionist study of a few major Freudian texts, with the intention of revealing some of the subtexts that they conceal.

Now Derrida's critical method as described in another connexion by Charles Davis (Cross Currents, 32: 278 ff.) 'denies that any text, any chain of signs, can have a determinate meaning, so that texts have no transparency upon events outside themselves, outside the free play of significations they open up'. In a word, the critical method that Lacan has also applied to psychoanalysis interprets Freud's metapsychology itself.

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