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Slap, J.W. (1965). American Imago. XXI, 1964, Nos. 1-2: The Significance of Psychoanalysis for the Humanities. Otto Rank and Hanns Sachs. Pp. 6-133.. Psychoanal Q., 34:620-621.
    
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: American Imago. XXI, 1964, Nos. 1-2: The Significance of Psychoanalysis for the Humanities. Otto Rank and Hanns Sachs. Pp. 6-133.

(1965). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 34:620-621

American Imago. XXI, 1964, Nos. 1-2: The Significance of Psychoanalysis for the Humanities. Otto Rank and Hanns Sachs. Pp. 6-133.

Joseph W. Slap

Written in 1913 by the original editors of Imago, this monograph takes up the application of psychoanalysis to various sectors of the humanities. The investigation of myths is most thoroughly treated. Myths are seen as parallel structures to dreams in which incestuous and homicidal material is admissible to waking consciousness because of the recognition of its fantasy character. While myths are distorted and reworked through the years, late versions may be similar to early

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ones as a result of the return of the repressed. Religion is formed as a compromise between the instincts and defensive forces; accordingly, celebrations and taboos are prominent features. With elaboration of the anti-instinctual side, religion may take on a dry, obsessional quality. As a reaction to this there may arise a new religious movement in which the instincts (spiritual experience, love) are given fresh emphasis. Difficulties presented by the external world are met with magic (prayer) as an expression of belief in the omnipotence of thought, gesture, and speech. A chapter on æsthetics attempts to explain the paradoxical enjoyment of tragic poetry and drama. Other topics dealt with are the psychology of artists, ethnology, linguistics, philosophy, ethics, law, pedagogy, and characterology. The monograph is of interest as a historical document and for its numerous penetrating observations.

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Article Citation

Slap, J.W. (1965). American Imago. XXI, 1964, Nos. 1-2. Psychoanal. Q., 34:620-621

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