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Freud, S. (1874). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Eduard Silberstein, Vienna, October 22-23, 1874. The Letters of Sigmund Freud to Eduard Silberstein 1871-1881, 64-68.

Freud, S. (1874). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Eduard Silberstein, Vienna, October 22-23, 1874. The Letters of Sigmund Freud to Eduard Silberstein 1871-1881, 64-68

Letter from Sigmund Freud to Eduard Silberstein, Vienna, October 22-23, 1874 Book Information Previous Up Next

Sigmund Freud

Vienna, October 22-23, 1874

¡Querido amigo!

I am setting about answering your two letters in the middle of the night in order to cut short your surprise, if not your concern, about my obdurate silence. Be of good cheer, I am still alive and still breathing—the balmy air of the dissection hall, albeit I barely have time to take cognizance of my breaths. In fact, this is my sole excuse; a letter demands a degree of composure, or artistic calm, a letter is nothing if not an exercise in the so-called liberal arts in which one can take pleasure only when the din of the daily round and cares has been silenced. Despite this, a letter to you was lying ready in my desk when I received your postcard, whereupon I decided to hold it back as it was no longer up-to-date and to replace it with another. As recompense for your long wait I can serve you with an authentic report on the inauguration of our rector which took place yesterday. I have no doubt that you read all about it in the Neue Presse,1 but since their report, too, was only written by a student and, it would seem, by a fairly inept observer at that, you may like to have my account as a correction and an amplification.

You will remember, from the time you spent here, a proclamation from the Ministry of Education which drew attention to the cutting of lectures by law students and threatened disciplinary action, and another relating to the behavior of professors during examinations. The second incensed the teachers as much as the first did the students. To mark the long-postponed inauguration of the rector, the students had decided to hold a noisy demonstration, meant to remind His Excellency Herr Minister Dr. von Stremayr2 somewhat emphatically of the meaning of academic freedom. It turned out differently.

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