The Wolf Man's burden

Johnson, Laurie ORCID: (2001) The Wolf Man's burden. Cornell University Press, New York, USA. ISBN 0-8014-3875-6


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The Wolf Man was Sigmund Freud's most famous case; his enigmatic childhood dream of being gazed at by wolves outside his bedroom window bedeviled the founder of psychoanalysis. A rich source of imagery and meaning, the Wolf Man case might be interpreted as the primal scene of psychoanalysis itself. This book regards the creation of the psychoanalytic case study as the writing of two lives -- those of the analysand and the analyst -- so Freud's own biography and subjective viewpoint could hardly fail to bear a direct influence on the institution of psychoanalysis. When Freud met the patient known later as the 'Wolf Man' psychoanalysis was already at an impasse because of Freud's inability at that time to work through repressed material from his own childhood. Freud overcame this impasse through a counter-transference that cast his patient in the role of a rival for the control of psychoanalysis writ large; his means for vanquishing this rival set the terms for Freud's legacy. The book offers a rigorous methodological framework for discussing the relationship between psychoanalytic writing and the lives of those who engage in it. The work of Nicolas Abraham, Maria Torok, and Jacques Derrida in particular, are extended into the realm of Freud's own life. The result is psychobiography and psychoanalytical theory grounded firmly in historical lives.

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Item Type: Book (Commonwealth Reporting Category A)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Unavailable in electronic format.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Arts - Department of Humanities and International Studies (Up to 31 Mar 2011)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Arts - Department of Humanities and International Studies (Up to 31 Mar 2011)
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 01:01
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2016 00:44
Uncontrolled Keywords: Sigmund Freud; Nicolas Abraham; Maria Torok; Jacques Derrida; Wolf Man; psychoanalysis; cryptonymy; dream interpretation; biography
Fields of Research (2008): 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2005 Literary Studies > 200525 Literary Theory
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200204 Cultural Theory
22 Philosophy and Religious Studies > 2203 Philosophy > 220313 Philosophy of Language
Fields of Research (2020): 47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4705 Literary studies > 470514 Literary theory
47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4702 Cultural studies > 470207 Cultural theory
50 PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES > 5003 Philosophy > 500314 Philosophy of language

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