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Blum, H.P. (1991). Freud and the Figure of Moses: The Moses of Freud. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 39:513-535.

(1991). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 39:513-535

Freud and the Figure of Moses: The Moses of Freud

Harold P. Blum, M.D.


Moses was a lifelong preoccupation of Freud, representing a double and idealized self and object. Freud identified with different aspects of Moses during different periods of development, from concrete hero to abstract ideal. He turned to Moses in the concluding phase of his relationship with Fliess and his self-analysis, and then at other times of crisis. The Moses recreated by Freud is important to the evolution of the concepts of the superego, and his Moses studies simultaneously illuminate the developmental significance of internalization, identification, and abstract symbolic thought. Latently autobiographical, the Moses motif is related to the analysis of unconscious conflict and trauma and to issues of Jewish identity and analytic ideals.

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