Industrial-Sized Deals Best Books of the Month Shop Women's Handbags Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Beach House Fire TV Stick Off to College Essentials Shop Popular Services tmnt tmnt tmnt  Amazon Echo Starting at $99 Kindle Voyage GNO Shop Back to School with Amazon Back to School with Amazon Outdoor Recreation Deal of the Day
Freud (Eminent Lives) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind 1st Edition

12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0060598952
ISBN-10: 0060598956
Why is ISBN important?
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used
Buy new
More Buying Choices
19 New from $9.12 41 Used from $0.01 3 Collectible from $41.15
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student

InterDesign Brand Store Awareness Rent Textbooks
$19.43 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 2 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind + Against Depression
Price for both: $31.31

Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews Review

Often referred to as "the father of psychoanalysis," Sigmund Freud championed the "talking cure" and charted the human unconscious. But though Freud compared himself to Copernicus and Darwin, his history as a physician is problematic. Historians have determined that Freud often misrepresented the course and outcome of his treatments—so that the facts would match his theories. Today Freud's legacy is in dispute, his commentators polarized into two camps: one of defenders; the other, fierce detractors.

Peter D. Kramer, himself a practicing psychiatrist and a leading national authority on mental health, offers a new take on this controversial figure, one both critical and sympathetic. He recognizes that although much of Freud's thought is now archaic, the discipline he invented has become an inescapable part of our culture, transforming the way we see ourselves. Freud was a myth-maker, a storyteller, a writer whose books will survive among the classics of our literature. The result of Kramer's inquiry is nothing less than a new standard history of Freud by a modern master of his thought.

Discover More Eminent Lives

Francis Crick: Discoverer of the Genetic Code
by Matt Ridley

Muhammad: A Prophet for Our Time
by Karen Armstrong

Machiavelli: Philosopher of Power
by Ross King

George Washington: The Founding Father
by Paul Johnson

Thomas Jefferson: Author of America
by Christopher Hitchens

Alexis de Tocqueville: Democracy's Guide
by Joseph Epstein

From Publishers Weekly

Looking closely at Freud's approach to specific patients and revisiting some of his lesser-known publications (including a vigorous campaign in support of cocaine as a mood-enhancer and anesthetic), Kramer finds in this irreverent biography a man who "displayed bad character in the service of bad science." Kramer's task is a difficult one, in large part because, in anticipation of his own legacy, Freud began destroying his personal documents at an early age. It's this kind of hubris ("as for the biographers ... we have no desire to make it too easy for them") which enabled him to hide the fact that he was "more devious and less original than he made himself out to be;" it also makes him a fascinating subject. Kramer is careful to give Freud's major contributions-including the recognition that symptoms can "reveal hints of thoughts and feelings pushed out of awareness" and that psychoanalysis's unfettered exploration of the subconscious can offer patients a haven for exploring otherwise repressed thoughts-their due. But he is unsparing in his assessment of Freud's errors in judgment: "there is a disturbing consistency in Freud's indifference to inconvenient facts. ... he bullied his patients and misrepresented his results." Kramer's study is a refreshing and thorough work that readers of all levels of familiarity with Freud's work can appreciate.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

See all Editorial Reviews
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $2.99 (Save 50%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Eminent Lives; 1 edition (November 21, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060598956
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060598952
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.9 x 7.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,802,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Princeton Reader on December 31, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Kramer's lucid writing style is refreshing.This small volume will give the reader a critical review of Freud's major writings. Highlights of Freud's biography add spice to the narrative. Kramer uses our contemporary knowledge in psychiatry to rediagnose some of Freud's patients.I got a deeper understanding of some of the famous cases like Anna O,Dora, the Wolf Man the Rat Man. Like many, Kramer agrees that Freuds impact on the development of the field of psychotherapy and psychological thinking have been hugh. Freud was not perfect.This book help highlight the imperfections. More than that,it helps clarify in a short space, work that took Freud years and years to develop and 23 volumes of the Standard edition to Express.Like Freud,Kramer is a very talented writer as this and his other four volumes show.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Darioz Svabodas on March 21, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent, objective, and readable evaluation of the work and legacy of Sigmund Freud. Those who put this in the "Freud bashing" category appear not to desire an objective evaluation of Freud as a clinician nor as a scientist: Kramer presents the reader with such in a lively and precise way. He also presents the impact that Freud's ideas had on Western culture, and it is here where the impact of Freud is beyond question. Whether this impact has been for ill or good is open to question, speaking generally or more specifically in psychiatric and psychological science.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Grey on October 20, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Having just done a refresher on Freud's psychoanalytic theories, I thought it might be worthwhile to pick up a biography for a peek at the man behind the Oepidal curtain. I admit without shame that I chose this one off the shelf for its brevity, as I wasn't sure my passing interest would sustain me through a more exhaustive treatment. By sheer chance, Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind turned out to be just what I was looking for - a quickly paced yet thorough synopsis of Freud's life paired with an examination of the most popular of his theories.

As I'm a bit disinclined to the Freudian approach, it was quite lovely to watch Kramer call bulls*** on case study after case study and to expose Freud's utter lack of scientific rigour. In fact, based on the historical context provided by the author (which described how treatment of the mentally ill had started, before Freud became a fad, to focus on possible hereditary influences exacerbated by environmental factors), I got the very strong impression that Freud and his sexual hangups actually managed to set psychology back about fifty years.

Kramer is careful, however, to give the devil his due, and cites the most lasting of his influences, including his popularization of such now-common terms as 'projection' and 'identification.' He also credits Freud with something that's inarguable - a sheer, breath-taking scope of vision. Whether you buy into that vision or think it's utter crap, it's hard not to be at least a little impressed by the man who dared to dream it up.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Jose Salgado on March 14, 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dr. Kramer makes a great effort to be as objective as possible, he uses massive amounts of documents of different nature to obtain an integral perspective on the personal and professional life of Freud. The contrast between the ideal self that Freud pretended to have, and the actual reality of his monumental mistakes make the book not only historically interesting but also entertaining. It is inevitable to laugh at his exaggeration and craving of recognition and the tremendous limitations of his own method, the psychoanalysis.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By P. Stern on October 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fluent, timely, and clear-eyed, this reassessment of Freud's life is highly recommended. With his trademark learning and elegance, Kramer dissects Freud's legacy. An up-to-date assessment of the master's contribution.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
14 of 24 people found the following review helpful By J. Adams on February 23, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The "Eminent Lives" series has some great writing and equally good research into some of the most significant people to walk the Earth (with the exception of Armstrong's book on Mohammed).

Kramer does a good job of taking Freud off the pedestal that many have used to create an altar for an atheist. But by showing Freud to be a mere human, he goes out of his way to point out his opinion that Freud, with all his faults, was "The Inventor of the Modern Mind."

While I don't personally agree with Kramer's evaluation of Freud any more than I did with a lot of his opinions in his "Listening to Prozac" book, this is a book worth reading to get a far better balanced view of a man who was responsible for much of our modern day vocabulary in dealing with our fellow humans.

Freud had a lot of dumb ideas, was a shameless self-promoter, ignored his own research, invented and lied about the complex nature of some of his patients, but at the end of the day, as Kramer points out, was one of the humans to leave the Earth with a net plus on his life ledger. Unfortunately some of his patients paid the price of his opinions with their lives in ruins, but it will be up to your own value system to determine whether this was worth it. After all, many Clinton supporters agree with his view that the lives of a million Tutsi were not worth the life of a single American as he allowed the most intense genocide in the history of mankind in the modern era to occur on his watch. His approval ratings must make him "right."

If you don't want to buy this book and see it in a bookstore, just take five minutes to read the last chapter to see that Kramer holds Freud in high regard using this measuring stick.

This is not a "five-star" book, but i gave it that rating to balance the superficial reviews by Freud groupies who read this book with blinders on, if they read it at all.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind
This item: Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind
Price: $19.43
Ships from and sold by

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?