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Zinkin, J. (1951). Reik, Theodor. From Thirty Years with Freud. Translated by Richard Winston. [New York: International Universities Press, 1949. Pp. xi + 241. $3.75.]. Psychoanal. Rev., 38(2):200.

(1951). Psychoanalytic Review, 38(2):200

Reik, Theodor. From Thirty Years with Freud. Translated by Richard Winston. [New York: International Universities Press, 1949. Pp. xi + 241. $3.75.]

Review by:
Joseph Zinkin

This volume was originally published in this country in 1940, so that this edition represents a reissue of a volume which has become a little difficult to obtain. It is a very welcome reprint of this well-known volume. As is probably common knowledge to readers of this Journal, Reik does not give us a complete, organized biography of his great master but rather, in the first 62 pages, gives us his memories and impressions (in a very. personal way) of his famous teacher. It is not any sort of formal biography—that has still to be written. However, Reik in his essays and comments endeavors to convey to us something of his own feelings, veneration and love for his master. He attempts to state honestly and fairly certain ideas, ideals and attitudes which he feels were Freud's. All this on a very personal plane. In many ways it is a very unusual sketch of a great man and his influence on others. It has all the intimacy that a long and close association with another human being can bring. Reik is at great pains to stress Freud's tolerance, humanity and philosophical wit—to lift a little the world's impression of a rather cold, objective and skeptical figure which is so common a picture of Freud.

The second part consists of an unknown lecture of Freud which he permitted Reik to publish under his (Reik's) name. Then in the third part follows four essays, of a critical type, on Freud as a critic of our culture using Freud's own writings as the basis of discussion. These are penetrating, honest and highly scientific pieces of work which repay close reading. The fourth and final part, consists of six papers on various subjects (embarrassment in greeting, on the nature of Jewish wit, etc.) Here we meet with all of Reik's skill as a writer and analyst with which we have become familiar from his other published works. It is a quiet, modest and sincere book which can be recommended to every psychiatrist as pleasant and profitable reading.

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