Passion of Youth: An Autobiography, 1897-1922

Wilhelm Reich, Author, Chester M. Raphael, Editor, Mary Boyd Higgins, Editor Farrar Straus Giroux $17.95 (177p) ISBN 978-0-374-22995-5
Reich's brutal candor, his precocious sexuality and penchant for self-analysis make this pastiche memorable. At age four he eavesdropped on the housemaid making love to a coachman; at 11 he lost his virginity and from then on had sexual intercourse almost every day for months, he tells us. This stitched-together self-portrait is in three parts. First, a powerful essay from 1919 describes the effect of witnessing his mother's infidelity when he was 12. His jealous father's beatings drove her to suicide attempts, hastening her tragic death and cutting short Reich's youth. The middle section, an excerpt from History of Sexpol (1937), recalls his exposure as a soldier to the herd mentality of the Austrian army. In the final sectionembarrassingly adolescent diaries from his years as a medical student and young analyst in Viennawe see Reich applying Freud's ideas to his sexual fantasies, to a prostitute and to the woman who would later become his first wife. (August)
Reviewed on: 08/05/1988
Release date: 08/01/1988
Paperback - 177 pages - 978-1-55778-275-5
Paperback - 978-1-56924-929-1
Paperback - 200 pages - 978-0-374-53042-6
Open Ebook - 192 pages - 978-1-4668-4697-5
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