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De La Vega, G. (1955). Werther, Mischkin, Y Joaquin Monegro: Trilogia Patografica Hecha Por Un Psiquiatra (Werther, Mischkin, and Joaquin Monegro: Three Studies of Psychopathology): By M. Cabaleiro Goas, M.D. Barcelona, Spain: Ed. Apolo, 1951. 310 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 24:599-599.

(1955). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 24:599-599

Werther, Mischkin, Y Joaquin Monegro: Trilogia Patografica Hecha Por Un Psiquiatra (Werther, Mischkin, and Joaquin Monegro: Three Studies of Psychopathology): By M. Cabaleiro Goas, M.D. Barcelona, Spain: Ed. Apolo, 1951. 310 pp.

Review by:
Gabriel De La Vega

Three characters in literature and their authors are analyzed together: Werther and Goethe, Prince Mischkin, 'The Idiot', and Dostoevski, and Joaquin Monegro, 'Abel Sanchez', and Unamuno. Dr. Goas attempts to examine psychiatrically the three characters 'as if they were disturbed patients'. The book is clear and exhaustive, especially the section on Werther and Goethe. The author at times offers profound dynamic understanding. The principal drawback is perhaps his insistence on classifying the characters in a nosological way. Werther's suicide occurs because a psychotic unable to face reality reaches the breaking point; Mischkin is essentially an epileptic who tries to 'laugh it off' by a kind of make-believe acting out; Monegro is a deeply narcissistic and complex person who suffered from feelings of inferiority. The intricate mechanisms of these characters and their authors are not explored as fully as they might have been but the book is nevertheless erudite and pleasantly written, and makes one think. It is at times challenging, at others inventive, but always it is stimulating and refreshing.

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