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Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis

Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Using revelations gained from recently published correspondence, this provocative biography sheds new light on current debates about Sigmund Freud's theories. The book demonstrates how giving up the seduction theory - that all neurosis results from the molestation of small children by their fathers - swept Freud into a mid-life crisis out of which he eventually fought his way through to the discovery of psychoanalysis. Examining the newly released, highly personal letters between Freud and his boyhood friend, Eduard Silberstein, along with the letters of his 20s to his fiancee, Martha Bernays, and those to the confidant during his mid-life transition, Wilhelm Fliess, this volume provides valuable insight into Freud's development - both as a man and as a thinker. Peter M. Newton captures the drama of Freud's first love and heartbreak, the defiant and complicated ambitions of Freud's later adolescence, and the historic creative accomplishment and personal reward of his mid-life transition. A breakthrough study of developmental crisis and triumph, this volume will be welcomed by anyone who wishes to better understand one of the world's most important and influential thinkers. Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis also serves as a valuable text for undergraduate and graduate courses in human development, adult development, psychopathology, and personality, as well as courses on Freud and on developments in psychoanalytic institutes.

Book News Annotation:

A biography of Freud shedding new light on current debates about his theories. Newton (psychology, The Wright Institute) demonstrates how giving up the seduction theory swept Freud into a mid-life crisis, and examines newly discovered personal letters between Freud and his boyhood friend, and letters to his fiancee. Newton charts the evolution of Freud's thought through a continuing sequence of developmental periods and tasks, and argues that Freud didn't give up the seduction theory out of political expediency.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

Using revelations gained from recently published correspondence, this provocative biography sheds new light on current debates about Sigmund Freud's theories. The book demonstrates how giving up the seduction theory--that all neurosis results from the molestation of small children by their fathers--swept Freud into a mid-life crisis out of which he eventually fought his way through to the discovery of psychoanalysis. Examining the newly released, highly personal letters between Freud and his boyhood friend, Eduard Silberstein, along with the letters of his 20s to his fiancée, Martha Bernays, and those to the confidant during his mid-life transition, Wilhelm Fliess, this volume provides valuable insight into Freud's development--both as a man and as a thinker. Peter M. Newton captures the drama of Freud's first love and heartbreak, the defiant and complicated ambitions of Freud's later adolescence, and the historic creative accomplishment and personal reward of his mid-life transition.

Applying a theory of lives to this great, complex story, Newton charts the evolution of Freud's thought through a continuing sequence of developmental periods and tasks. He shows that contrary to accepted opinion, Freud dreamed of becoming not just a cloistered scientist, but a revolutionary healer as well. The author demonstrates that the two aspects of Freud's dream and of his identity--that of quiet scholar and revolutionary healer--warred for possession of Freud's soul throughout his entire life. Exploring the years of Freud's transition to middle age, the book also lays to rest Jeffrey Masson's widely trumpeted accusation that Freud gave up his seduction theory out of political expediency. From a close study of Freud's letters to Wilhelm Fliess, Newton shows that it was not a desire to placate the medical establishment, but the accumulating weight of Freud's own clinical experience, that dashed the seduction theory.

He then examines in-depth the mid-life crisis Freud suffered as a result of giving up the seduction theory. Without the theory, Freud felt he had no way to realize either the scientific or the clinical aspect of his dream. Newton's developmental approach to adulthood centers his account on questions such as: How, at the age of 41, if the dream to which Freud had devoted the first 20 years of his adult life was shattered, could he guide the next 20? How could he salvage, from the wreckage of his youth, the elements of a life worth living as a middle-aged man? And if he was neither a first-rate scientist nor an expert doctor, who was he?

A breakthrough study of developmental crisis and triumph, this volume will be welcomed by anyone who wishes to better understand one of the world's most important and influential thinkers. Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis also serves as a valuable text for undergraduate and graduate courses in human development, adult development, psychopathology, and personality, as well as courses on Freud and on developments in psychoanalytic institutes.

Synopsis:

Drawing from highly personal correspondence, some of which has only recently been released, this illuminating biography applies a developmental approach to Freud's youth and transition to middle age. It reconstructs the years during which Freud determined his goals, suffered a crisis resulting from his inability to realize them, and fought his way through to the creation of psychoanalysis. In so doing, the book reveals the great complexity of Freud's personal reality and simultaneously challenges critiques of his thinking.

This book will be of interest to readers in the history of psychoanalysis and Sigmund Freud.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. 277-283) and index.

About the Author

Peter M. Newton is Professor of Psychology at The Wright Institute in Berkeley and in private practice. He was born in Oakland, California and educated at the University of Washington, Columbia, and Yale, where he subsequently taught. He is author of Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis and has written extensively in the areas of adult development and psychoanalytic treatment.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780898622935
Subtitle:
From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis
Author:
Newton, Peter M.
Publisher:
The Guilford Press
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Methodology
Subject:
Psychoanalysis
Subject:
Social Scientists & Psychologists
Subject:
Freud, sigmund, 1856-1939
Subject:
Psychoanalysts
Subject:
Psychoanalysis -- History.
Subject:
Methodology x
Subject:
Movements - Psychoanalysis
Subject:
Psychopathology - Compulsive Behavior
Subject:
Movements - Behaviorism
Subject:
Freud, Sigmund
Subject:
Psychoanalysts -- Austria -- Biography.
Subject:
Scientists & Psychologists
Subject:
Biography - General
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series Volume:
TM 10-4510-206-14
Publication Date:
19941202
Binding:
Hardback
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
297
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

Biography » General
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » History

Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 297 pages Guilford Publications - English 9780898622935 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Using revelations gained from recently published correspondence, this provocative biography sheds new light on current debates about Sigmund Freud's theories. The book demonstrates how giving up the seduction theory--that all neurosis results from the molestation of small children by their fathers--swept Freud into a mid-life crisis out of which he eventually fought his way through to the discovery of psychoanalysis. Examining the newly released, highly personal letters between Freud and his boyhood friend, Eduard Silberstein, along with the letters of his 20s to his fiancée, Martha Bernays, and those to the confidant during his mid-life transition, Wilhelm Fliess, this volume provides valuable insight into Freud's development--both as a man and as a thinker. Peter M. Newton captures the drama of Freud's first love and heartbreak, the defiant and complicated ambitions of Freud's later adolescence, and the historic creative accomplishment and personal reward of his mid-life transition.

Applying a theory of lives to this great, complex story, Newton charts the evolution of Freud's thought through a continuing sequence of developmental periods and tasks. He shows that contrary to accepted opinion, Freud dreamed of becoming not just a cloistered scientist, but a revolutionary healer as well. The author demonstrates that the two aspects of Freud's dream and of his identity--that of quiet scholar and revolutionary healer--warred for possession of Freud's soul throughout his entire life. Exploring the years of Freud's transition to middle age, the book also lays to rest Jeffrey Masson's widely trumpeted accusation that Freud gave up his seduction theory out of political expediency. From a close study of Freud's letters to Wilhelm Fliess, Newton shows that it was not a desire to placate the medical establishment, but the accumulating weight of Freud's own clinical experience, that dashed the seduction theory.

He then examines in-depth the mid-life crisis Freud suffered as a result of giving up the seduction theory. Without the theory, Freud felt he had no way to realize either the scientific or the clinical aspect of his dream. Newton's developmental approach to adulthood centers his account on questions such as: How, at the age of 41, if the dream to which Freud had devoted the first 20 years of his adult life was shattered, could he guide the next 20? How could he salvage, from the wreckage of his youth, the elements of a life worth living as a middle-aged man? And if he was neither a first-rate scientist nor an expert doctor, who was he?

A breakthrough study of developmental crisis and triumph, this volume will be welcomed by anyone who wishes to better understand one of the world's most important and influential thinkers. Freud: From Youthful Dream to Mid-Life Crisis also serves as a valuable text for undergraduate and graduate courses in human development, adult development, psychopathology, and personality, as well as courses on Freud and on developments in psychoanalytic institutes.

"Synopsis" by , Drawing from highly personal correspondence, some of which has only recently been released, this illuminating biography applies a developmental approach to Freud's youth and transition to middle age. It reconstructs the years during which Freud determined his goals, suffered a crisis resulting from his inability to realize them, and fought his way through to the creation of psychoanalysis. In so doing, the book reveals the great complexity of Freud's personal reality and simultaneously challenges critiques of his thinking.

This book will be of interest to readers in the history of psychoanalysis and Sigmund Freud.

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