Freud's Megalomania: A Novel

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9780393321999: Freud's Megalomania: A Novel

"Wonderfully contrived ....a triumph of that false-memory syndrome called contemporary fiction."―New York Times Book Review

In an inventive blending of "comic energy and intellectual muscle" (The New Yorker), Israel Rosenfield serves up for our scrutiny and sheer delight Freud's long-lost last "manuscript," which reveals a Freud who in reflecting upon his life's work realizes that he has gotten it all wrong! A victim of his own self-delusion, Freud goes about setting the record straight with a preposterously seductive new theory of human behavior: it is not drives that motivate us, but rather our boundless capacity to deceive ourselves. Such are the explosive contents of his last manuscript, Megalomania. Its discovery years later prompts a postmortem that effectively puts the icon to rest, resurrects the man, and exposes the naiveté of Freud's disciples and the megalomaniacal tendencies of his detractors. This "wise and witty" (Boston Sunday Globe) intellectual spoof delivers a surprising twist on history and a playful challenge to today's enduring Freud debate.

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About the Author:

Israel Rosenfield, author of a number of nonfiction books, writes frequently for the New York Review of Books and teaches history at the City University of New York.

From Kirkus Reviews:

What if Freud had left a final paper declaring, revolutionarily, that morality arises not from the guilt caused by Oedipal desires but, instead, from simple fear of the absolute, unchallengeable authority demonstrated in megalomania? CUNY history professor Rosenfield makes just this the premise of his novel debut—and produces a wonderful, chewy, intellectual delight. Rosenfield mixes real with fictional characters, giving Freud a mistress (and also a daughter by her), with whom he leaves his last paper, Megalomania, before departing from Europe forever. The paper, unread and unauthenticated, manages to survive WWII and come finally into the hands of Freud’s granddaughter, who in turn brings it to the attention of cognitive scientist Professor Albert J. Stewart: and it’s Stewart who tells us about his own first and astonished reading of the paper, then presents it to us in toto with his own annotations, clarifications, and background comments. Stewart himself has just ended a five-year collaboration with one Norman Dicke, winner of the “Looker Prize,” creator of “Loop Theory,” and fabricator of a thinking—Marilyn Monroe robot. Framed by Stewart’s tales of the despotic and despicable Dicke, Freud’s paper becomes all the more riveting as it treats Freud’s real-life and also despotic colleague, Nobelist Julius Wagner-Juarreg, who gave shock treatment to soldiers during WWI, declaring them “malingerers” rather than traumatized victims. He was cleared, in 1920, of charges of unethical practice—though the testimony Freud himself gave in the trial left him haunted ever after, feeling that he had failed “to adequately defend . . . the young men who had been tortured.” And the cause of his failure? Simply the sheer force of Wagner as megalomaniac—a man so bold that he “had perfected the art of lying to a point where truth had become unrecognizable,” the sheer power of his fraud having become the truth. “Fraud is Man,” declares Freud in this brilliant, learned, ambitious, and wildly thought-provoking masterpiece of fictional revisionism. -- Copyright © 2000 Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Rosenfield, Israel
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Descripción WW Norton Co, United States, 2001. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.In an inventive blending of comic energy and intellectual muscle (The New Yorker), Israel Rosenfield serves up for our scrutiny and sheer delight Freud s long-lost last manuscript, which reveals a Freud who in reflecting upon his life s work realizes that he has gotten it all wrong! A victim of his own self-delusion, Freud goes about setting the record straight with a preposterously seductive new theory of human behavior: it is not drives that motivate us, but rather our boundless capacity to deceive ourselves. Such are the explosive contents of his last manuscript, Megalomania. Its discovery years later prompts a postmortem that effectively puts the icon to rest, resurrects the man, and exposes the naivete of Freud s disciples and the megalomaniacal tendencies of his detractors. This wise and witty (Boston Sunday Globe) intellectual spoof delivers a surprising twist on history and a playful challenge to today s enduring Freud debate. Nº de ref. de la librería AAV9780393321999

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Israel Rosenfield
Editorial: WW Norton Co, United States (2001)
ISBN 10: 0393321991 ISBN 13: 9780393321999
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Descripción WW Norton Co, United States, 2001. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. In an inventive blending of comic energy and intellectual muscle (The New Yorker), Israel Rosenfield serves up for our scrutiny and sheer delight Freud s long-lost last manuscript, which reveals a Freud who in reflecting upon his life s work realizes that he has gotten it all wrong! A victim of his own self-delusion, Freud goes about setting the record straight with a preposterously seductive new theory of human behavior: it is not drives that motivate us, but rather our boundless capacity to deceive ourselves. Such are the explosive contents of his last manuscript, Megalomania. Its discovery years later prompts a postmortem that effectively puts the icon to rest, resurrects the man, and exposes the naivete of Freud s disciples and the megalomaniacal tendencies of his detractors. This wise and witty (Boston Sunday Globe) intellectual spoof delivers a surprising twist on history and a playful challenge to today s enduring Freud debate. Nº de ref. de la librería AAV9780393321999

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