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Sapirstein, M.R. (1949). The Psychoanalytic Reader: Volume I. Edited by Robert Fliess, M.D. New York: International Universities Press, 1949. 392 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 18:501-502.

(1949). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 18:501-502

The Psychoanalytic Reader: Volume I. Edited by Robert Fliess, M.D. New York: International Universities Press, 1949. 392 pp.

Review by:
Milton R. Sapirstein

With the shift in the center of gravity of the psychoanalytic movement toward the United States in recent decades, much of the earlier psychoanalytic literature is becoming less readily available to the modern student. Robert Fliess has begun an elaborate salvage to make some of the earlier and often quoted European literature more easily accessible to the serious student. The Psychoanalytic Reader is the initial product of his effort and the first of a series of similar volumes.

The articles which he has collected are all important ones, especially historically, in the development of psychoanalysis. Excluded, of course, are the works of Freud and those whose collected works are available (Abraham, Ferenczi, Jones, Sachs, Nunberg). The editor has, of necessity, run into many difficulties in making selections for his first anthology. Anxious to choose significant articles, many of the papers included in this volume are not so unavailable at this time as to make it important to include them in an anthology. In fact, most of the material in the book can easily be found in this QUARTERLY or the International Journal of Psychoanalysis by the conscientious student of analysis. The more casual reader, tempted to seek an easy psychoanalytic education, will be quickly overwhelmed by the highly technical nature of the articles included in this volume.

The advantages of the volume, however, are many. The editor has collected and grouped his articles in such a fashion that the reader is in a position to organize his reading according to subjects, and with appropriate historical perspective. Fliess's introductions and comments are especially helpful in orienting the reader to the place of the particular article in psychoanalysis. One wishes that his comments were longer.


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