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Garcia, E.E. (2009). Alexander Scriabin's Mysterium and the Transcendence of Music: Psychoanalytic Notes on Genius, Mysticism and Art. Psychoanal. Rev., 96(3):461-483.

(2009). Psychoanalytic Review, 96(3):461-483

Alexander Scriabin's Mysterium and the Transcendence of Music: Psychoanalytic Notes on Genius, Mysticism and Art

Emanuel E. Garcia, M.D.


Freud (1917) rather famously explained the resistances to psychoanalysis as springing from the succession of blows to human narcissism previously leveled by Copernican and Darwinian theory. Not only was the earth not the center of the universe, the human species not materially different from its animal brethren, but man's very ego not master in its own house. Yet the ongoing virulence to psychoanalysis has always suggested to me the operation of other forces with perhaps even deeper roots.

Psychoanalysis occasioned the greatest modern revolution in human thought, and no activity of humankind cannot be touched by its insights in one way or other. Nonetheless, widespread ignorance of its findings and widespread illegitimate scorn are threatening to push its discoveries into a gloomy oblivion. For those of us who witness daily the indispensability of the psychoanalytic perspective, it is disheartening to hear everywhere misunderstanding and misrepresentation, particularly in academia.

Freud was very clear about the nature of his work, and certain self-appointed defenders, who have sought to make of him a philosopher or novelist, should take heed: Psychoanalysis is above and beyond all, a science.

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