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Bychowski, G. (1968). Freud: Political and Social Thought: By Paul Roazen. (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1968. Pp. 322. $6.95.). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 49:739-741.
(1968). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 49:739-741
Freud: Political and Social Thought: By Paul Roazen. (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1968. Pp. 322. $6.95.)
Review by: Gustav Bychowski
There are some outstanding points about this volume by the Harvard Professor of political theory.
Strange as it may seem, this is, at least to my knowledge, the first attempt at a comprehensive presentation of the implications of psychoanalysis for political and sociological theory.
This attempt is based on a profound and thorough knowledge of Freud's original writings, the sources and the development of his ideas and the post-Freudian evolution of psychoanalysis. Though the competence of this reviewer does not extend to the socio-political aspects of the volume, the thoroughness of the psychoanalytic knowledge of the author compels me to assume that he is at least as competent in his own field.
To thoroughness of knowledge and breadth of perspective, Roazen adds as another virtue intellectual courage, which allows for new formulations reaching far into the analysis of Freudian thoughts and attitudes.
Apparently, his coming from another scientific discipline, allows him for a distance from the mainsprings of psychoanalysis which makes possible new perspectives.
The psychoanalytic reader can offer only high praise on the competence and thoroughness of the psychoanalytic part of his presentation. Also of great interest are the affinities established by the author between Freud's basic ideas and the philosophical tradition concerning the nature of man and the social bond. To point out these affinities means, of course, to establish the uniqueness of Freud's discoveries about the so-called human nature.
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