Papers on Psycho-analysis

Wood

"The papers here collected have already appeared in print, for the most part in psychological journals that do not circulate widely among the medical profession. They constitute a selection of the author's contributions made during the past few years on the subject of psycho-analysis, and are now issued in a more accessible form in the hope of arousing further interest in this over-neglected and important branch of scientific investigation. Being under no illusions as to any intrinsic importance of the papers apart from the subject to which they relate, or, therefore, as to their documentary value, the author has not hesitated to alter considerably their original form, by modifications and additions, wherever this has seemed desirable. They have been grouped under five headings, according to the particular topic with which they deal, but otherwise are printed in the order of their publication. Having regard to the difference in the familiarity with French and German respectively in this country, the author has left the quotations from the former language in the original and has appended translations to those from the latter"--Preface. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).
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Publisher
Wood
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Published on
Dec 31, 1913
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Pages
432
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Language
English
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First published in 1958, "Free Associations "is the story of the early life of Ernest Jones. It was prepared for publication by his son Mervyn, who contributed an epilogue covering the period from 1918 (when this book ends) through Jones's death in 1944. This new edition includes a reflective introduction by Mervyn Jones, in which he writes about Ernest Jones "as I could not write in 1958."

One of the pioneers in psychoanalysis, Ernest Jones was active in advancing the status as well as the development of the field. In the wider forum of public opinion, he made himself an advocate of the new science-the Huxley, he liked to say, to Freud's Darwin. Huxley had ranked below Darwin in creative originality, and had filled the role of the faithful and indispensably useful follower; and Mervyn Jones believes both Freud and Jones were pleased by the comparison. In addition to his important public and organizational roles (as president of the British and International Psychoanalytic Associations), Jones made significant contributions to psychoanalytic theory. When the Nazis invaded Vienna, he saved much of the assets and archives of psychoanalysis, at great personal risk, and made the arrangements for Freud to come to London.

In his introduction, Mervyn Jones presents a sometimes surprising portrait of a thoroughly conventional man in what was then an unconventional profession. He describes tensions and conflicts among the early Freudians, and situates Freudianism with other theories that laid claim to scientific truth in the late nineteenth century.

"Free Associations "presents an evocative picture of Wales and London at the turn of the century, and describes the developing profession of psychoanalysis. It is a dramatic story of success and failure, and of a young man and how he responded to the new, strange ideas of Freud. This book fills in our understanding of the history of psychoanalysis and its founders.

This little book on the War Neuroses, with which the Verlag opens the “Internationale psychoanalytische Bibliothek”, deals with a subject which until lately engaged the greatest current interest. When the subject came up for discussion at the Fifth Psycho-Analytical Congress at Budapest (September, 1918), official representatives of the Central European Powers were present to obtain information from the lectures and discussions. The hopeful result of this first meeting was the promise that psycho-analytical institutions should be established, where medical men qualified in analysis might find the means and time to study the nature of these puzzling illnesses and the therapeutic value of psycho-analysis in them. However, before these results could be achieved the war came to an end, the government organisations broke down, and interest in war neuroses gave place to other concerns. At the same time, significantly enough, most of the neurotic diseases which had been brought about by the war disappeared on the cessation of the war conditions. The opportunity, therefore, for a thorough investigation of these affections was unfortunately missed. However, one must add, it is to be hoped that it will be a very long time before such an opportunity again occurs. This episode, now a thing of the past, has not been without importance for the spread of the knowledge of psycho-analysis. Many medical men, who had previously held themselves aloof from psycho-analysis, have been brought into close touch with its theories through their service with the army compelling them to deal with the question of the war neuroses. The reader can easily gather from Ferenczi’s contribution to the subject with what hesitation and misgivings this advance was made. Some of the factors, such as the psycho-genetic origin of the symptoms, the significance of unconscious impulses, and the part that the primary advantage of being ill plays in the adjusting psychical conflicts (“flight into disease”), all of which had long before been discovered and described as operating in the neuroses of peace time, were found also in the war neuroses and almost generally accepted. The work of E. Simmel has shown what results may be obtained if the war neurotic is treated by the cathartic method, which, as is well known, was the first stage of the psycho-analytic technique.

From the advance thus made towards psycho-analysis, however, one need not assume that the opposition to it has been reconciled or neutralised. One might think that when a man, who had hitherto not accepted any of a number of connected conclusions, suddenly finds himself in the position of being convinced of the truth of a part of them, he would weaken in his opposition and adopt an attitude of respectful attention, lest the other part, of which he has no personal experience, and therefore upon which he is unable to form a personal opinion, should also prove to be correct.

This other part of the psycho-analytical theory which is not touched upon in the study of the war neuroses is that the driving forces which find expression in the formation of symptoms are sexual in nature, and that the neurosis is the result of the conflict between the ego and the sexual impulses which it has repudiated. The term “sexuality” is to be taken here in the broader sense customary in psycho-analysis, and not to be confused with the narrower sense of “genitality”. Now it is quite correct, as Ernest Jones points out in his contribution, that this part of the theory has not hitherto been demonstrated in relation to the war neuroses.

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