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Freud, S. (1936). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Arnold Zweig, February 21, 1936. The International Psycho-Analytical Library, 84:122-123.

(1936). The International Psycho-Analytical Library, 84:122-123

Letter from Sigmund Freud to Arnold Zweig, February 21, 1936 Book Information Previous Up Next

Sigmund Freud

Vienna IX, Berggasse 19
21. 2. 36

Dear Meister Arnold,

Your letter moved me very much. It is not the first time that I have heard of the difficulties the cultured man finds in adapting himself to Palestine. History has never given the Jewish people cause to develop their faculty for creating a state or a society. And of course they take with them all the shortcomings and vices in the culture of the country they leave behind them into their new abode. You feel ill at ease, but I did not know you found isolation so hard to bear. Firmly based in your profession as artist as you are, you ought to be able to be alone for a while.

In Palestine at any rate you have your personal safety and your human rights. And where would you think of going? You would find America, I would say from all my impressions, far more unbearable. Everywhere else you would be a scarcely tolerated alien. In America too you would have to shed your own language, not an article of clothing but your own skin. I really think that for the moment you should remain where you are. The prospect of having access to Germany again in a few years really does exist. Sometimes I even anticipate seeing this happen myself, and I am not hoping for an extension of my life but for a curtailment of the Nazi regime. It is true even that after the Nazis Germany will not be what it was, not Eichkamp any more, so to speak. But one will be able to participate in the clearing-up process.

It will be a great joy to have you with me in Vienna-Grinzing. We will forget all misery and criticism and indulge in our phantasies about Moses. It does not need to be just near my birthday; any other time is perhaps better. I do not yet know how I am going to escape the exertions they will expect of me but I certainly do not intend to join in.

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