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Genosko, G. (1993). Freud's Bestiary: How Does Psychoanalysis Treat Animals?. Psychoanal. Rev., 80(4):603-632.

(1993). Psychoanalytic Review, 80(4):603-632

Freud's Bestiary: How Does Psychoanalysis Treat Animals?

Gary Genosko

Any reader of Freud will have noticed that his work contains many animals. This is especially evident in the case histories. For example, Ernst Lehrs in “Notes upon a case of Obsessional Neurosis(Freud, 1909b) presented Freud with his fear of rats. Along the way, we discover that the Rat Man was also nicknamed Leichenvogel, a corpse-bird; in addition, Freud thought that Lehrs was an osphresiolagniac, a snooping and sniffling dog-child. Moreover, the wolves and dogs of “From the History of an Infantile Neurosis” (1918) have caught the attention of Deleuze and Guattari (1987) and Abraham and Torok (1986).

In this investigation we do not offer an exhaustive taxonomy of Freud's animals. Rather, we are guided by the idea of the bestiary and identify Freud with the figure of the bestiarist. Freud established a collection of fables about animals out of the menageries of his analysands as well as his own textual, extratextual, and extraana-lytic experiences. We do not assume that there is a fable for every animal. In fact, Freud subsumed many animals under a single apologue.

We proceed, then, in the following manner. In Section I we take up Deleuze and Guattari's charge that Freud lacked a truly zoological vision and argue that he did have such a vision, albeit a restricted one.

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