Wild Psychoanalysis, Religion, and Race

Veronika Fuechtner

in Berlin Psychoanalytic

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780520258372
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520950382 | DOI:
Wild Psychoanalysis, Religion, and Race

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter discusses the ideas perceived by the Freudian psychoanalytic associations as marginal because of their theoretical eclecticism. The relationship of the self-declared “wild analyst” Georg Groddeck to the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute provides a marginal perspective both geographically and theoretically. Psychoanalysts considered his psychoanalytic thought to be pathbreaking, but the majority labeled it as unscientific and outside the bounds of Freudian psychoanalysis. Groddeck's complex relationship with the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute and to Freudian psychoanalysis reflects his trajectory from spa medicine to “wild psychoanalysis.” Groddeck introduced himself to Freud by letter in May 1917. He defended his initial rejection of psychoanalysis as being a result of his own sense of competition — reading Freud's work would have destroyed his own claim to originality. Groddeck sought Freud's opinion on whether his work transgressed the “limits of psychoanalytic activity.”

Keywords: eclecticism; Georg Groddeck; Freud; psychoanalysis

Chapter.  19249 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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