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Seides, S.W. (1998). The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sándor Ferenczi. vol. 1, 1908-1914. Edited by Eva Brabant, Ernst Falzeder, and Patrizia Giampieri-Deutsch. Cambridge, MA/London: Harvard University Press, 1993. 584 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 67(1):164-166.

(1998). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 67(1):164-166

The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sándor Ferenczi. vol. 1, 1908-1914. Edited by Eva Brabant, Ernst Falzeder, and Patrizia Giampieri-Deutsch. Cambridge, MA/London: Harvard University Press, 1993. 584 pp.

Review by:
S. Warren Seides

These early letters, starting from the first meeting of Freud and Ferenczi, portray the excitement of both in their psychoanalytic discoveries, while at the same time depicting their personality differences. Ferenczi's exuberence is effusive. His letters are longer than Freud's, freely associative in nature, and seeking of Freud's approval for his ideas. Freud, on the other hand, manifests considerably more caution and discernment, yet is unstinting in his “giving” quality. His sense of conviction is ever present.

Many of the issues raised by these pioneers are still being discussed today: curiosity about occultism and thought transference, children's use of symbolism as the beginning of concept formation, the functioning of libido in hysteria, and how analysts react to their patients. Therapeutic zeal is related by Freud to early object loss in the analyst. Many words of caution and advice are given by Freud to Ferenczi on maintaining an analytic posture.

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