The Sphinx on the Table: Sigmund Freud's Art Collection and the Development of Psychoanalysis

Janine Burke, Author . Walker $27.95 (455p) ISBN 978-0-8027-1503-6

Burke opens a narrow window and provides a rich view of Freud the man in this sympathetic but not hagiographic account. An obsessive collector of antiquities, especially small Egyptian, Greek and Roman statues, Freud made his consulting room into a museum and took much of his enormous collection with him on holiday. Well aware that collecting reflects sublimated need, Freud never asked himself what that need was, though he used his antiquities to bind himself to colleagues and stimulate analysands. Freud's "old and grubby gods" provided objective correlatives for his theories. Yet some of them, such as his favorite little bronze of Athena, provided evidence of psychic forces—especially feminine ones—that he was neither able to integrate into his theories nor acknowledge as part of himself. Burke anchors discussion of the major areas of Freud's collection in a sketchy chronological biography, creating unnecessary confusion. However, chapters on the American poet H.D.'s relationship with Freud, and on Freud's flight from the Nazis and his last days in exile, are fascinating and poignant. This is an illuminating portrait of a man whose intellect was rooted in sensuality and whose neuroses were part of his genius. 24 pages of photos not seen by PW . (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 08/07/2006
Release date: 09/01/2006
Show other formats
FORMATS
Open Ebook - 464 pages - 978-0-8027-1834-1
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.