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Freud, S. (1931). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, December 13, 1931. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sándor Ferenczi Volume 3, 1920-1933, 421-424.

Freud, S. (1931). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, December 13, 1931. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sándor Ferenczi Volume 3, 1920-1933, 421-424

Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, December 13, 1931 Book Information Previous Up Next

Sigmund Freud

Vienna, December 13, 1931
IX., Berggasse 191

Dear friend,

As always, I was pleased with your letter, less with its content. If you were unable to decide on any change in your position up to now, then it is certainly very improbable that you will do it later. But that is essentially your affair; my opinion that you have not embarked upon any fruitful path is a private matter that doesn't need to disturb you.

On the other hand, I see that the difference between us comes to a head in the smallest thing, a detail in technique, which certainly deserves to be discussed. You have made no secret of the fact that you kiss your patients and let them kiss you; I had also heard the same thing from my patients (via Clara Thompson).2 Now, two paths are diverging for you, if you want to give a detailed report about technique and results. Either you share this, or you keep it quiet. The latter, as you may well think, is dishonorable. What one does in the way of technique one must also represent publicly. Besides, both paths would soon merge. Even if you don't say so yourself, it will become known, just as I knew about it before you told me.

Now, I am certainly not one to condemn such little erotic gratifications out of prudishness or consideration for bourgeois convention. I also know that in the times of the Nibelungenlied a kiss was only a harmless greeting, which was bestowed on every guest. I am further of the opinion that analysis is also possible in Soviet Russia, where complete sexual freedom is sanctioned by the state.

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