Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
:
Login
Tip: To review The Language of Psycho-Analysis…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Prior to searching a specific psychoanalytic concept, you may first want to review The Language of Psycho-Analysis written by Laplanche & Pontalis. You can access it directly by clicking here.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Gombrich, L. (2016). History Lessons. Am. Imago, 73(2):165-180.
  

(2016). American Imago, 73(2):165-180

History Lessons

Leonie Gombrich

I

“Once you were so small that, even standing on tiptoes, you could barely reach your mother's hand…Your father and mother were also small once, and so was your grandfather, and your grandmother…But they too had grandfathers and grandmothers, and they, too, could say, ‘Once upon a time…’”

So wrote my own grandfather, E. H. Gombrich, when he was 26 years old and living in Vienna. The quotation is taken from the opening passages of his Little History of the World, first published in German in 1936 and now available worldwide in more than thirty languages (Gombrich, 2005, p. 1). Indeed, as his literary executor, one of my most important jobs after he died in 2001 was to oversee the translation and publication of this, his earliest full-length work, in English for the first time. It was this job, the job of carrying out my well-known forebear's wishes, that made me consider more intently the universal question: Who am I in relation to my history? And to what extent is my history our history—indeed, can there be a history in which we all have, to some degree, a share?

I am not a historian—certainly not an art historian—nor indeed an academic of any kind. I believe it was largely because I was working in arts administration and had briefly been an assistant literary agent that my grandfather and father agreed I should inherit the role of executor to the E. H. Gombrich literary estate. In my family—academics and musicians all—such forays into the world of budgets, contract negotiations, and production teams were considered signs of great worldliness and practicality.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the article. PEP-Web provides full-text search of the complete articles for current and archive content, but only the abstracts are displayed for current content, due to contractual obligations with the journal publishers. For details on how to read the full text of 2014 and more current articles see the publishers official website.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.