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Freud, S. (1919). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, April 20, 1919. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sandor Ferenczi Volume 2, 1914-1919, 348-349.

Freud, S. (1919). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, April 20, 1919. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sandor Ferenczi Volume 2, 1914-1919 , 348-349

Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, April 20, 1919 Book Information Previous Up Next

Sigmund Freud

Vienna, April 20, 1919

Dear friend,

Thirty-three years ago today, as a physician still wet behind the ears, I faced my unknown future with the intention of going to America, when the three months for which I had made sufficient provision failed to begin very auspiciously. Would it not have been better on the whole if at the time fate had not smiled in such a friendly manner? Whatever has been achieved since, security has not been a part of it. I will certainly not be able to accomplish much more than a third of a century of hard work with men and demons.

In Budapest you put the cart before the horse by giving Toni a certain prospect of my visit. All other things that would demand cleverness aside: I am not up to the troubles of a present-day journey with my prostate, which requires free access to the bathroom every hour, and I would get into the most embarrassing situations, as I did for the first time ten years ago in America.1 In that way I will also miss the chance to see you. I have the same need for exchanging thoughts that you express, and for that reason I have hatched the plan that you should accompany Toni to Vienna. I can't imagine that one can prevent a patient from traveling if he can't work there.

Lajos's orienting letter hasn't arrived, so I was in doubt for a time as to whether it is only a continuation of his neurosis, which I hope soon to master. But a telegram from Lajos in reply seems to exclude this possibility. I hope he is quite certain as to the diagnosis. One can easily be mistaken.

What Toni thinks about the present situation of ΨA with you seems quite rational. Restraint, we are not suited for any kind of official existence, we need our independence on all sides. Perhaps we also have grounds for saying: God protect us from our friends. Up to now we have dealt with our enemies. There is also an aftermath, in which we must again find a place. We are and remain nonpartisan except for one thing: to investigate and to help.

About us privately, there is only the fact that we know by way of a telegram from Munich that Ernst, amidst the turmoil of the revolution, has earned his diploma2 with distinction.

I ask you to enlist travelers to convey our correspondence, whenever possible.

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