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This chapter explores Freud’s publications on Biblical prophets in the new interdisciplinary journal Imago that Freud founded to specifically deal with non-medical applications of psychoanalysis. This chapter analyzes Freud’s anonymously published essay “The Moses of Michelangelo” (1914) anew as an extension of and a direct consequence of the disputations over Jung’s Jonah-type and Maeder’s teleological function of dreams. In his essay on Michelangelo’s Moses, Freud would take up his defense in Rome, where Pope Leo X had excommunicated Luther in 1521. Disguised as “an untrained layman,” Freud sets up a new hermeneutical arena far from the site of Lutheran Biblical exegetics on Jonah and before the Catholic Renaissance master Michelangelo, an artist Jung claimed expressed the “Jonah-type” in his pietàs. Applying and parodying the aesthetic arguments Jung and Maeder utilized in their recent publicatins, Freud uses the trope of the “artless Jew” by shifting the dialogue from typological interpretations of stubborn Jewish prophets to German-language art historical interpretations of a Catholic representation of Moses.
This chapter addresses the most common problems in historiographic approaches to religious content in Freud’s oeuvre through a close reading of Freud’s first foray into the ancient Mother cult that appeared in the Zentralblatt at the end of 1911. I explore how misleading assumptions about the untitled four-paragraph text known as “Great is Diana of the Ephesians” reflects broader issues in scholarship on religion in psychoanalysis. I demonstrate that these historiographical trends on religious content has effectively obscured Freud’s main point, which turns out to an editorial epistle announcing Freud’s editorial control of the Zentralblatt after Alfred Adler’s resignation hidden in the metaphoric chaff of religious hootenanny.
This chapter explores the transition of editorial control over the Swiss journal Jahrbuch from Switzerland to Vienna in an analysis of the last issue that Jung edited under the shadow of his official resignation and the first issue that Freud edited in his stead. If Jung, Eugen Bleuler, and Freud launched the Jahrbuch with the publication of Freud’s “Little Hans,” which contained the psychoanalytic solution to the riddle of antisemitism in a startling digression, for the purpose of announcing the successful partnership between the Jewish members of the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society and the Protestant members associated with the Burghölzi Hospital, I argue that Jung’s publication of Alphonse Maeder’s “Dream of the Blue Horse” sought to repudiate Freud’s debut article. Whereas Freud had theorized that the roots of antisemitism lay in concerns over the circumcised Jewish penis in the non-Jewish psyche, the “Dream of the Blue Horse” theorized that the notion of intrapsychic antisemitism was a paranoid constellation wrought by oversexualized Jewish minds.
Freud’s intense faith in Jung, a man he had called the “Joshua” to his Moses, and whom he declared would be his successor at a time when psychoanalysis needed a “Christ,” ended in a hermeneutic battle over the Prophet Jonah. This chapter explores how the biblical story of Jonah became the site for working out the differentiation between the Viennese school and Zurich school of psychoanalysis. I argue that the forgotten Jonah trail is worth recovering because Freud’s repudiation of the Biblical hermeneutics surrounding the myth of Jonah largely determined the end of Freud and Jung’s collaboration and, at the same time, influenced Freud’s subsequent attitude to and writings on Biblical prophets. Freud’s taciturn, oppositional, and hitherto unanalyzed discursive relationship with the prophet Jonah sheds new light on psychoanalytic literature on Biblical myth, its reception, and even its consequent influence on the movement after 1913.
The introduction challenges the conventional modernist approach by tracing the development of psychoanalytic discourse as a network of cultural systems dependent on commercial interests and connected through various authors, editors, publishers, printers, and readers. I explore the discursive ground that religion provided for the establishment of the contemporary “rules” of engaging in the field of psychoanalysis. The prewar period may anticipate postwar psychoanalytic literature on religion, but the journal wars, and the rivalries between the various players for control of the key publications play a much more central role in these works than various views on the role of religion in the psyche.
The book concludes by looking at what Jung and Freud published and did not publish on Jonah after their break. This retrospective perspective helps us evaluate the legacy and aftereffects of what was written during the founding years of the psychoanalytic periodicals. The book concludes with a reappraisal of Freud’s decision to end his life on the Jewish Day of Atonement during the Second World War in the context of the extraordinary ways the story on the Book of Jonah played out before the First World War.
This chapter maps five stages of the founding history of the psychoanalytic periodical enterprise, beginning with Freud’s pre-analytic phantasies around a journal, its social form, and unavoidable emotional content. Freud later nurtured a small group of followers expressly to establish a periodical and found the discourse on religion critical to the enterprise. With the arrival of competing periodicals on the scene, the use of religious rhetoric editors utilized the discourse on religion to narrate group dynamics within the Freudian circle and to enact change in the periodical enterprise itself. In is only in 1912 that religious content became a charged site in Christian-Jewish debates for working out contemporary rivalries and for marking out one’s territory. Jung and his circle began to abandon the analogic treatment of religion for the evidence that the history of religion could provide as the basis for their theoretical differences with Freud.
Religion, more than sexuality, cast psychoanalysis in controversy and onto the world stage even as it threatened to dismantle the psychoanalytic collective. In the founding years of the first psychoanalytic periodicals, relational dynamics shaped the psychoanalytic corpus on religion. The psychoanalytic pioneers developed their ideas in tandem even if in protest to one another. Religion is a topic worthy of engagement, not least because the symbolized terrain in the history of religion was so often deployed as a vehicle for motivating, disciplining, or editing out a member of the psychoanalytic community in publication. This book offers an interdisciplinary approach to religion and psychology, including a compelling denouement that reveals new narratives about longstanding rumours in the early history of the psychoanalytic movement. Above all, this volume demonstrates that the first generation of psychoanalysts succeeded in writing themselves into the history of religious thought and sacralizing the origins of psychoanalysis.
This paper explores the visual sources that inspired Felix Salten's Bambi, Eine Lebensgeschichte aus dem Walde (1923), and its postpublication legacy in America, Poland, India, Israel, and Russia. While both Jewish and non-Jewish artists embraced the hunted deer motif as their own “national folktale,” the Jewish roots of the visual motif are critical to understanding the revisions and adaptations of the tale in the mid-twentieth century. The case of the myriad revamps of Bambi demonstrates that the nationalist idiom was so elastic in the mid-twentieth century that it functioned as an aesthetic mode rather than an a priori category of identity. At the center of the analysis is the contention that Jewish artists, filmmakers, and writers used the aesthetic properties of the nationalist idiom not only to forge a path to political agency but also to build a shelter from the nation-state.
In consultation with Sigmund Freud, the Viennese psychoanalyst Wilhelm Stekel (1868–1940) treated the first Jewish cleric known to undergo analysis, in 1903. According to the case history, published in 1908, a forty-two-year-old rabbi suffered from a Berufsneurose, an occupational neurosis associated with the pressures of his career. Stekel's case history forms an indelible portrait of a religious patient who submitted himself to the highly experimental treatment of psychoanalysis in the early years of the discipline. However, scholars never integrated the rabbi's case into the social history of psychoanalysis, more as a consequence of Freud's professional disparagement of Stekel than of the case history's original reception. Psychoanalytic historiography has largely dismissed Stekel's legacy, resulting in a lack of serious scholarly consideration of his prodigious publications compared to the attention paid to the work of some of Freud's other disciples. Stekel's most recent biographers, however, credit him as the “unsung populariser of psychoanalysis,” and claim that he is due for reconsideration. But in his published case history of the rabbi, Stekel also warrants introduction to the field of Jewish studies, not only because of the literary treatment of the rabbinical profession by a secular Jewish psychoanalyst, but also because the rabbi incorporated aspects of that experience into his own intellectual framework after treatment.
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