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Freud for Beginners Paperback – July 15, 2003
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Everything you need to know about neurosis, libido, ego, and id -- but somehow it slipped your mind.
Freud for Beginners is a perfect introduction to the life and thought of the man whose discovery of psychoanalysis revolutionized our attitudes towards mental illness, religion, sex, and culture. This documentary cartoon book plunges us into the world of late-nineteenth-century Vienna in which Freud grew up. We explore his early background in science, his work as a therapist, his encounter with cocaine, and his theories on the unconscious, dreams, the Oedipus Complex, and sexuality.
We meet his family, his friend and enemies, and his patients -- The Rat Man, Anna O., Little Hans -- and we get an insider's view as the psychoanalytic movement is launched. The zany art and probing text do an extraordinary job of simplifying Freud without trivializing him.
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After spending 19 weeks in Paris with renown French neurologist, Jean Martin Charcot (another "mechanist"), Freud learned that hysteria was not just a disease of women's sex organs, but instead -- since it could be induced by hypnosis -- was a disturbance of the mind, by sexual ideas. And thus was a neurosis of both sexes.
Once back in Vienna, Freud had learned from a friend, Josef Breuer, about an interesting case of hysteria by Anna O, a 21-year old woman having hallucinations as she tried to care for her dying father. After he died the hallucinations became more violent and were accompanied by mumbled words. Breuer repeated them back to her to get her to tell him about her hallucinations. This made her feel better even though it did not cure her.
Freud and Breuer published their joint results of the Anna O. case: Hysterics suffer from traumatic memories -- psychic agents that can directly influence the body physically. These memories remain an active part of the unconscious, motivating behavior even when they are repressed. The hysterical symptoms, for instance, are just the alternative channel of expression due to the "blockage" caused by the repression. Unblocking the memories relieves the symptoms of the hysteria. Thus hysteria is a defense against unpleasant ideas.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A nice, short overview of Freud for beginners and those who find Freud's theories and life of interest..Published 19 months ago by psychmom
It reads like a graphic novel. It has a lot of trivial knowledge in it. I found it to be amusing and read it within a day or two.Published on June 18, 2014 by KansasKim
I was surprised to the point of mild shock as to how good this book was as a beginners introduction to Freud. Read morePublished on November 17, 2013 by navigator1965
I bought this because I saw it in a museum and knew I could find it for a better price on Amazon. It is a great book, but really a one time read. Read morePublished on October 6, 2013 by Nicole
This is a superb overview of Freud and his work. Even though it's done in a cartoon format, with one idea or so on each page, there's more here than can be remembered. Read morePublished on May 22, 2013 by King of Controversy
This is an accessible, fun book. It is sure to please novices and experts alike. Perfect for individuals that don't know Freud from a hole in the wall or those that have studied... Read morePublished on December 30, 2012 by Ashley