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Deri, F. Brunswick, D. (1964). Freud's Letters to Ernst Simmel. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 12:93-109.

(1964). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 12:93-109

Freud's Letters to Ernst Simmel

Frances Deri and David Brunswick, Ph.D.



AMONG THE followers of Freud, of the early as well as of the later years, none was more loyal, more devoted, more meticulous in adhering to basic principles in psychoanalysis than Ernst Simmel. Out of his experience as a medical staff officer in the German Army in World War I he wrote his well-known paper on "War Neurosis and Psychic Trauma, " which evoked Freud's first letter to him.

In this letter Freud foreshadows his expectation that Simmel will make further contributions to the problems of mental disease. Beginning with 1918 there was an interchange of letters between the two men that continued until 1939. Although there is in the collection only one letter from Simmel (the one that summarized the culmination of his efforts to establish a psychoanalytic sanitarium, Schloss Tegel, 1927), there is evidence in Freud's letters that Simmel always looked to Freud as the leader and guide who would cut through the knotty problems that constantly arose in the developing science.

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