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psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic criticism

DAVID MACEY


Subject Literature

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405168908.2010.x


Extract

In an encyclopedia article written in 1922, F reud (1922 , p. 235) supplies a lucid description of the discipline he founded. Psychoanalysis is, he writes, the name given to “a procedure for the investigation of mental processes which are almost inaccessible in any other way.” It is a therapeutic method for the treatment of neurotic disorders. Finally, it is a body of psychological data “which is gradually being accumulated into a new scientific discipline.” Although it was developed primarily as a clinical method for the treatment of individuals, Freud's new scientific discipline has always had a variety of other applications. Freud (1913) described it as having claims to scientific interest which made the psychoanalytic method extensible to nonclinical disciplines as diverse as philology, biology, sociology, and education, as well as to the science of A esthetics . His professed aversion to totalizing philosophies and systembuilding notwithstanding, Freud was always prone to the most wide-ranging speculations, and the literary-artistic domain was in his view one which came within the remit of psychoanalysis. Freud's W ritings abound in literary allusions and references, mainly to classical German authors such as Goethe and Schiller. There is a certain I rony here in that whereas Freud is often seen as one of the cardinal thinkers of the modern, his own tastes remain resolutely ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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