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Rehabilitating Freud

Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis have taken something of a battering over the last few decades. On the 150th anniversary of Freud's birthday, here is the case for the defence

Sigmund Freud was born in Frieberg, Moravia (now in the Czech Republic) 150 years ago on 6th May 1856 and died in Hampstead, London in September 1939. His writings, along with those of Darwin and Marx, constitute one of the three grand narratives that dominated 20th-century thought. Freud greatly admired Darwin—but thought little of Marx and Marxism. He deplored Marx’s failure to give credit to psychological factors in human nature and said of the goals of the Bolshevik revolution, “A transformation of human nature such as this is highly improbable.” Someone said to him that the Russian revolution would involve…

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