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Stramer, R. (2016). Freud in Zion by Eran J. Rolnik Karnac Books, London, 2012; 252 pp; £24.99. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 97(4):1217-1222.

(2016). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 97(4):1217-1222

Freud in Zion by Eran J. Rolnik Karnac Books, London, 2012; 252 pp; £24.99

Review by:
Ricardo Stramer, Ph.D.

Freud in Zion - a rather metaphorical title given that Sigmund Freud never visited the Holy Land - seeks to examine the interplay between Zionism and psychoanalytic thought, and its influence on the formation of Israeli identity. In order to examine this interplay, the author explores the development of psychoanalytic theory and debate in Israel, and asks whether there is a specifically Israeli psychoanalysis, influenced by the history of the Jewish people. At the same time, the author, being an Israeli psychoanalyst as well as historian informs us that by examining the proposed theme, he is in a position to examine the development of great ideological developments in the 20th century, namely Zionism, Socialism and Freudianism from both historical and sociological perspectives.

The author concentrates on the development of Jewish thinking in the 20th century emphasizing the need of Jewish intelligentsia to develop a new mentality, away from persecution, that would adapt to the conditions of a modern nation-state. When it comes to Zionism, the author suggests that it was greatly influenced by the need to develop an alternative to traditional religious explanations for the plight of the Jewish people.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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