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Sigmund Freud

Important Terms, People, and Events

Summary

Childhood and Schooling: 1856–1873

Terms

Analysand -   · A person undergoing psychoanalysis.
Cathexis -   ·  Greek word meaning "to occupy" or "to invest." In Freudian psychology, it is used to describe the attachment of libido, or other psychic energy, to a particular object or goal.
Displacement -   · A psychoanalytic defense mechanism in which one's desire for something inappropriate, such as one's mother, is displaced onto something acceptable, such as one's wife. The acceptable person shares characteristics with, and takes the place of, the unacceptable person.
Ego -   ·  English translation of Freud's term das Ich, or "the I." One of the three components of the psyche, it is the part of the psyche that deals with reality.
Id -   ·  English translation of Freud's term das Es, or "the It." One of the three components of the psyche, it is responsible for instinctual urges and is completely unconscious.
Libido -   ·  Psychic energy derived from the sex drive.
Neurology -   · The field of medicine concerned with brain disease and brain injuries. Distinct from neuroscience (the scientific study of the brain) and neuropsychology (the study of psychological disorders and impairments caused by brain dysfunction).
Neurosis -   · A mental disorder that involves distortion, but not outright rejection, of reality. Neuroses include anxiety disorders, "hysteria," "neurasthenia," and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
Organic -   · Organic brain disorders are those that are caused by detectable injuries or diseases of the brain. Organic diseases are usually contrasted with diseases of psychological origin.
The Oedipus complex  -   ·  A persistent set of unconscious beliefs and desires that results, according to Freud, from the childhood repression of the desire to sleep with one's mother and kill one's father.
Physiology  -   · The field of biology concerned with the activities and functions of biological systems (as opposed to anatomy, which is concerned with the structures of biological systems).
Physicalism (materialism)  -   · The philosophical position that all phenomena can be explained by reference to physical (or "material") objects and the laws that govern their interactions.
Pleasure principle -   · The principle obeyed by the id, which attempts to accomplish infantile wishes such as the wish to have sex with one's mother and kill one's father.
Projection -   · A psychoanalytic defense mechanism by which an unwanted desire is attributed to others instead of the self. If you hate your father, for example, you might project your own feelings onto him and become convinced that your father hates you.
Psychoanalyst  -   · A person who performs psychoanalysis. Often a medical doctor, though not always, especially after the 1960s in Europe.
Psychoanalysis -   · Originally a method of treating people with neurotic disorders invented and made popular by Sigmund Freud. Also a general method of interpreting behavior, art, history, etc., as being rooted in unconscious (usually sexual) desires.
Psychosis -   · A mental disorder that involves outright rejection or denial of reality. Psychotic conditions include schizophrenia, very severe depression, and manic- depressive disorder.
Reaction formation -   · A psychoanalytic defense mechanism by which an unwanted desire is converted into its opposite; e.g. a hatred of one's father is converted into a powerful (neurotic) love for him.
Reality principle -   · The principle obeyed by the ego, which attempts to reconcile the id's desires with reality.
Repression -   · The process by which the ego prevents unwanted desires from emerging into consciousness. According to psychoanalysis, partially-successful repression is the cause of neuroticism.
Sublimation -   · The use of psychic energy generated by an unwanted or inappropriate desire, such as the desire to have sex with one's mother, for an acceptable activity such as art, science, good works, etc.
Superego -   ·  English translation of Freud's term "Über-Ich", or "over-I." One of the three components of the psyche, the super-ego represents internalized social rules. It is partly conscious, and it enforces rules and imposes guilt.

People

Alfred Adler -  A Jewish Viennese psychoanalyst, he was one of Freud's early supporters but split with Freud in 1911 over conflicts about the psychoanalytic movement. Adler was angered by Freud's increasing tendency to ignore the Viennese, and differed with Freud in his views on the importance of the sex drive. Adler went on to become a well-known psychologist who emphasized the importance of the themes of dominance and submission in mental illness and in human behavior more generally. He is responsible for the idea of the inferiority complex.
Martha Bernays -  Sigmund Freud's wife. Freud fell in love with Bernays in 1881 and, after she and her family moved to Hamburg in 1883, corresponded with her almost daily until their marriage in 1886.
Minna Bernays -  Martha Bernays' sister, she became Freud's sister-in-law when Freud and Martha Bernays married. Minna, who never married, lived with Martha and Freud for over thirty years. Carl Jung claimed in an interview after Freud's death that Freud and Minna had a long-running love affair; this claim has not been substantiated. It is known that Freud enjoyed Minna's company, that he talked about his work with her, (he did not talk about it with Martha), and that on at least on occasion they vacationed together without Martha.
Marie Bonaparte -  A princess of Greece and Denmark and a resident of Paris, Marie Bonaparte was one of Freud's most faithful analysands. She was instrumental in his escape from Austria in 1938.
Ernst Brücke  -  Brücke was Freud's favorite mentor during his years at the University of Vienna. Under Brücke's direction, Freud did research on brain anatomy and histology. Brücke helped convince Freud to leave the field of neuroscience for private practice in neurology in 1882.
W. C. Bullitt -  The American Ambassador to France, in 1938 he helped Freud and his family obtain exit permits from Austria.
Charles Darwin -  Hugely influential author of The Origin of Species and other works on the theory of evolution.
Max Eitington -  A psychoanalyst and one of Freud's closest friends. A member of the "Committee," he became president of the International Psychoanalytic Association in 1926.
Sandor Ferenczi -  An early supporter of Freud, he remained loyal to the psychoanalytic cause until the 1930s, just before his death, when he split from Freud. Originally from Budapest, Ferenczi did much to support the growth of psychoanalysis in Hungary. He was a member of the "Committee" and president of the International Psychoanalytic Association after World War I.
Alexander Freud -  Sigmund Freud's younger brother and frequent traveling companion.
Jakob Freud -  Sigmund Freud's father; a wool merchant.
Amalie Freud -  Sigmund Freud's mother.
Emmanuel Freud -  One of Jakob Freud's sons by his first wife, he was Freud's older half-brother.
Julius Freud -  The second son of Amalie and Jakob Freud, he died within a year of his birth in 1857.
Anna, Rosa, Dolfi, and Paula Freud  -  Freud's sisters.
John Freud -  Sigmund Freud's nephew. He was Freud's first childhood playmate.
Wilhelm Fliess -  A nose and throat specialist from Berlin, he was Freud's best friend and confidant during the 1890s. Fliess shared Freud's love for controversial speculation. For instance, he had a theory that connected the state of the nose to various sexual disorders. All of Freud's letters to Fliess have been saved, but Fliess's responses were all lost or destroyed by Freud himself. Freud was infatuated with Fliess, even noting a "homosexual" component in his affection for him, until their falling out in 1900–1901.
Anna Freud  -  Daughter of Freud, Anna was his constant companion and nurse during the years of his cancer (1923–1939), and the only one of Freud's children to become a psychoanalyst. She is best known for her work on defense mechanisms such as repression, projection, sublimation, displacement, and reaction formation.
Anton von Freund -  A Hungarian analysand of Freud's. Grateful for having been cured of his neurosis, Freund donated a large sum of money to help found the Internationaler Psychoanalytischer Verlag, a psychoanalytic publishing house in Vienna. Unfortunately, high levels of postwar inflation soon rendered Freund's donation nearly worthless, forcing the Verlag into difficult financial straits.
Carl G. Jung -  A Swiss psychiatrist who was one of Freud's most avid followers in the 1900s, he broke with psychoanalysis in 1913 over conflicts with Freud about the importance of the sex drive in human behavior. From 1910 to 1912, Jung was president of the International Psychoanalytic Association and editor of the Association's Jahrbuch. Jung went on to become a well-known psychologist with strong mystical leanings. Jung was one of the first non-Jews to become interested in psychoanalysis.
Theodor Meynert -  A well-respected Viennese brain anatomist and psychiatrist for whom Freud worked in the 1880s at the Vienna General Hospital.
Otto Rank -  A member of the "Committee" and one of Freud's most faithful followers until the 1920s, Rank antagonized Freud by claiming that psychoanalytic treatment could be completed in 4–5 months, that acting out repressed childhood fantasies helped treatment, and that the trauma of birth–not the Oedipal crisis–was the root cause of neurosis. Without Rank's efforts, the psychoanalytic publishing house Verlag never would have survived its first five years (1919–1924).
Hanns Sachs -  A lawyer who was one of Freud's early supporters and a member of the "Committee." He later became a psychoanalyst.
Max Schur -  Freud's physician in the 1920s and 1930s. On September 21, 1939, he fulfilled Freud's request to inject Freud with morphine. The morphine hastened and eased Freud's death two days later. Schur later became a psychoanalyst.

Events

World War I, 1914–1918  -  The First World War was sparked by the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand in Serbia. The Austro-Hungarian attempt to punish the Serbs for the assassination instigated a series of threats and counter-threats by the European powers. Eventually almost all of Europe became involved in a war that lasted far longer than anyone had expected and resulted in the defeat of the Central Powers and the destruction of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
World War II, 1939–1945  -  The seeds of the Second World War were laid with Hitler's annexation of the Sudetenland, part of the Czechoslovakian Republic, in violation of international treaties that had been put in place after World War I. The Western European countries appeased Hitler for months, until in 1939 Hitler began his attempt to conquer all of Europe and Russia. In the course of World War II, approximately six million Jews and a number of other innocent non-combatants were killed by the Nazi regime and the horrific Holocaust the regime created. The involvement of the United States, Japan, China, Russia, Europe, and parts of Africa and the Middle East made World War II the first truly global war. It ended with the first and only use of nuclear weapons in war–the American bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which came months after the total defeat of the Axis powers in Europe by the Allies.
Freud's Self-Analysis, 1896–1899  -  The years between 1896, when Freud's father died, and 1899, when The Interpretation of Dreams was completed and published, were some of the most productive years of Freud's life. During this time, he formulated the basic techniques and theoretical framework of psychoanalysis. Aside from his patients, Freud's primary source of data was himself. He analyzed his dreams, his slips of the tongue, and the childhood memories he was able to dredge up from his unconscious. Freud called this process of interpreting himself his "self- analysis." The self-analysis had a formative effect on his theories and his life. We know about this period only because of Marie Bonaparte's successful effort to save Freud's letters to Wilhelm Fliess.
Nazis take power in Germany, 1933 -  In 1933, Hitler became chancellor of Germany and began the campaign of persecution and nationalism that would lead to World War II. It was in this year that the German parliament, the Reichstag, was set on fire. In the same year, numerous books–including Freud's–were also burnt in Germany.
Nazis invade Austria -  In March 1938, the German Nazis invaded Austria, forcing Freud to flee to England.
Freud diagnosed with cancer -  Freud's diagnosis of mouth cancer in 1923 started the last chapter of his life, one in which he was famous, controversial, and well-respected, but in which he suffered a number of partings from friends–some due to death, some to disagreement. During this time, Freud underwent a seemingly interminable series of operations to control his cancer. His writings became increasingly speculative and focused on the major problems of humanity, including religion (The Future of an Illusion, Moses and Monotheism) and the development of civilization and culture (Civilization and Its Discontents). Although the last sixteen years of Freud's life were spent in near-constant discomfort–he wore an ill-fitting prosthesis in his mouth that gave him great difficulty in eating and speaking– his productivity was not reduced. He continued to treat patients until the last few months of his life.

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Civilization and Its Discontents

by MarieSnyder, January 11, 2014

I wrote an analysis of Freud's Civilization and Its Discontents with page references here:

http://apuffofabsurdity.blogspot.ca/2012/07/on-how-to-be-happy.html

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2 out of 3 people found this helpful

Beyond the Pleasure Principle and Future of an Illusion

by MarieSnyder, January 11, 2014

I wrote an analysis of Beyond the Pleasure Principle here:

http://apuffofabsurdity.blogspot.ca/2011/12/on-pleasure-and-pain.html

And I wrote an analysis of Future of an Illusion (not mentioned in the summary), a piece about Freud's understanding of God, published in 1927, here:

http://apuffofabsurdity.blogspot.ca/2012/01/on-god-our-invisible-parents.html

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