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Grotjahn, M. (1967). Sigmund Freud—Lou Andreas-Salomé Briefwechsel: Edited by Ernst Pfeiffer. Frankfurt: S. Fischer Verlag, 1966. 293 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 36:591-595.

(1967). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 36:591-595

Sigmund Freud—Lou Andreas-Salomé Briefwechsel: Edited by Ernst Pfeiffer. Frankfurt: S. Fischer Verlag, 1966. 293 pp.

Review by:
Martin Grotjahn

A full-length psychoanalytic dialogue by correspondence is presented. Again Sigm. Freud writes letter after letter of great historical and personal interest. The letters cover the twenty-five years from 1912 until shortly before the death of Lou Andreas-Salomé. (Lou Andreas-Salomé was born in 1861, met Freud at the turn of the century, and died in 1937.) Of all the letters, approximately three hundred, the ratio is perhaps three to two, indicating that Lou wrote oftener and longer letters. Anna Freud preserved the letters and supplied them for this publication.

The first letter, dated September 27, 1912, was answered almost immediately by Freud. At first both correspondents salute each other formally. While Lou's salutation is best translated, Dear Professor, and changes little during the years, Freud changes from Dear Madam to Dearest Lou and finally settles for Dear Lou. Once Lou addresses a letter to C. A. Freud (p. 29), the initials of her husband. The slip is at once taken up and interpreted by Freud. There appears to be little censorship, mostly in order to protect the anonymity of several patients; some omissions seem to refer to the relationship between Lou and Anna (pp. 104, 115, 124, 128, 151, and 181).

The first and most amazing feature in this correspondence is how much these two people really cared—for each other, for their communication, and for the psychoanalytic movement. Almost everything mattered. Lou's handwriting alone, page after page, would tax the patience of any current analyst.

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