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Ritvo, L.B. (1972). Carl Claus as Freud's Professor of the New Darwinian Biology. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 53:277-283.

(1972). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 53:277-283

Carl Claus as Freud's Professor of the New Darwinian Biology

Lucille B. Ritvo

Jones (1957p. 310) in his biography calls attention to 'a baffling problem in the study of the development of Freud's ideas, and also in that of his personality'. He goes on to say that

A stranger might almost suppose that Freud was ignorant of the doctrine [of natural selection], which is assuredly out of the question. With his omnivorous reading he must have read such a classic as On the Origin of Species and probably Darwin's other writings. The only book of his he actually possessed was The Descent of Man, though in the Studies on Hysteria he twice referred to Darwin's The Expression of the Emotions.

Two years ago, while searching almost in vain in Freud's library for the volume of Darwin which, according to Jones, Freud actually possessed, I had the good fortune to come across seven additional Darwin volumes, all but one with Freud's signature of a date. The dates ranged from the German translation by Victor Carus of The Descent of Man, which was inscribed 'Sigismund Freud Stud Med 1857' to 6/6/83 in Volume II of the 1868 London edition of Darwin's The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication. Freud refers to both of these works in 'Totem and Taboo'. The 1872 Carus translation of The Expression of the Emotions referred to in the 'Studies on Hysteria' was signed simply 'S. Freud' without a date. The 1875 London edition of Darwin's On the Various Contrivances by which Orchids are Fertilized by Insects is inscribed 'S. Freud '79'; Volume II of Darwin's Gesammelte Werke, which is the Origin of Species, contains the same signature with the date 2/4/81.

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