The Death of Sigmund Freud
The Legacy of His Last DaysBook - 2007
An account of the final two years in the life of Sigmund Freud and their legacy describes how, in 1938, the elderly, ailing, Jewish Freud was rescued from Nazi-occupied Vienna and brought to London, where he finally found acclaim for his achievements, battled terminal cancer, and wrote his most provocative book, Moses and Monotheism.
A dramatic revisiting of Freud's escape from Nazi-occupied Vienna, his final days on earth, and his most controversial work—Moses and Monotheism.
When Hitler invaded Vienna in March of 1938, Sigmund Freud, old and desperately ill, was among the city's 175,000 Jews dreading Nazi occupation. The Nazis hated Sigmund Freud with a particular vehemence: they detested his "soul-destroying glorification of the instinctual life." Here Mark Edmundson traces Hitler and Freud's oddly converging lives, then zeroes in on Freud's last two years, during which, with the help of Marie Bonaparte, he was at last rescued from Vienna and brought safely to London. There he was honored as he never had been during his long, controversial life. At the same time he endured the last of more than thirty operations for cancer of the jaw. Confronting certain death, Freud, in typical fashion, did not let fame make him complacent, but instead wrote his most provocative book, Moses and Monotheism, in which he questioned the legacy of the greatest Jewish leader. Focusing on Freud's last two years, Edmundson is able to probe Freud's ideas about death, and also about the human proclivity to embrace fascism in politics and fundamentalism in religion. Edmundson suggests new and important ways to view Freud's legacy, at a time when these forces are once again shaping world events.
Blackwell North Amer
When Hitler invaded Vienna in the winter of 1938, Sigmund Freud, old and desperately ill, was among the city's 175,000 Jews dreading Nazi occupation. For their part, the Nazis hated Freud with a particular vehemence, not least for what they called his 'soul-destroying glorification of the instinctual life'. In this narrative, Mark Edmundson traces the oddly converging lives of Hitler and Freud, focusing especially on Freud's last two years. This was the period during which, with the help of Marie Bonaparte, he was at last rescued from Vienna and brought safely to London, where he was honoured and feted as he ever had been during his long, controversial life.
Staring down certain death, Freud - in typical fashion - did not enjoy his fame. Instead he wrote his most provocative book yet, Moses and Monotheism, in which he debunked all monotheistic religions and questioned the legacy of the great Jewish leader, Moses. Edmundson probes Freud's ideas about secular death and the rise of fascism and fundamentalism, and finally he grapples with the post-Freudian demise of psychoanalysis up to the present day, when religious fundamentalism is once again shaping world events.