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Grotjahn, M. (1970). Sigmund Freuds Prosa. Literarische Elemente Seines Stils. (Litterary Elements of his Style.): By Walter Schönau. Stuttgart: J. B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1968. 296 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 39:146-147.

(1970). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 39:146-147

Sigmund Freuds Prosa. Literarische Elemente Seines Stils. (Litterary Elements of his Style.): By Walter Schönau. Stuttgart: J. B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1968. 296 pp.

Review by:
Martin Grotjahn

Sigmund Freud was a scientist—not a literary writer; he wrote in a masterful style, which though often admired, was never carefully, methodically, and scientifically investigated. This author has developed methods of literary analysis which he applies with astonishing, detailed knowledge and understanding of Freud's writings. The book is the first 'style critique' and investigation of Freud's prose. Schönau shows that Freud's relation to his imagined reader followed the example of his ideal, Lessing, who analyzed the importance of the motto to which Freud devoted so much attention and loving care. The author is especially interested in the relation between scientific reporting and literary creation. He gives definition to methods for the investigation of style, often in a unique and pioneering way, always with astonishing insight and knowledge of Freud's place and importance in German literary history. The text shows that exactitude, devotion, and documentation of the scholar which went out of style before the First World War.

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