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Above is Google’s nGram of books mentioning three Jewish intellectual heroes through 2007 (the last full year of data, I believe). The trajectory of Einstein’s green line makes him looks like the real deal, while Freud (red) and Marx (blue) look like burst bubbles.

Events after 2007 may have helped stabilize the decline of Marx (his ideas can be useful conceptual tools, just as Malthus’s can, without requiring complete submission to either Marx’s or Malthus’s model of how the world works).

But will anything save Freud’s reputation?

During the latter part of his life, Freud was almost exactly as famous as Einstein (who was a huge celebrity after 1919), and then ascended into the heights during the 1950s, where he stayed until the 1990s.

That makes it puzzling to wonder what the Freudian hoopla was all about? How could Freud be three times as famous as Einstein from the 1950s through the 1980s?

From The Walrus:

Psychiatry’s Chosen People

Jews have always had a special fascination with Freud’s theories—no one more so than my own mother

BY BARBARA KAY · JAN. 19, 2017

Of the thirteen members in Sigmund Freud’s founding circle, only one was gentile. Their patients were virtually all Jewish as well.

There are plenty of theories for why this was so. Freud’s Austria was quite anti-Semitic, and close association with him, whether as a colleague or a patient, would have been stigmatizing for non-Jews.

But more pertinently: In my (Jewish) view, there can be no doubt that there was something familiar and accessible to Jews in the Talmudic nature of the psychoanalytic process. Instead of probing Torah narratives and commandments to know God’s will, psychoanalysts probe patients’ utterances to know their unconscious drives. I can see why the simple transfer of methodology from the interrogation of miracle-based texts to exegesis of exotic psychological tropes might appeal to the Jewish psyche …

As I can attest from my own 1940s and ’50s upbringing in Toronto, you didn’t have to be in Freud’s inner cycle to be affected by the Jewish predilection for psychoanalysis.

Some kids’ moms felt they missed their calling as a dancer or a writer. Mine, a high school graduate with native intelligence, but underdeveloped critical thinking skills harnessed to overdeveloped self-confidence, was an analyst manqué. I simply accepted that “what do you think you/she/he really meant by that?” was a normal response to even the most banal assertion at our dinner table. I assumed all families were like that, but they weren’t. It really was a Jewish thing. …

This was in the 1950s. I was an impressionable teenager, and I did not find her idea as ludicrous as I would in retrospect. Just as “red diaper” babies in the 1930s and ’40s were raised by their parents to believe the world was divided between evil capitalists and right-thinking Communists, I was for many years persuaded by my mother’s equally binary approach to life that history was a struggle between the psychologically crippled and the psychologically healthy (amongst whom she naturally counted herself).

To my mother, psychiatrists and psychoanalysts (there are, of course, important differences between their professions, but it was all the same to her) were god-like figures, all-knowing and pure of intention, their craft a unitary corrective to what ailed modern man. It never occurred to her that the power to give the thumbs up or down on a politician’s readiness for office, then based entirely in the personal opinion of someone whose judgments were rooted in hypotheses and theories, might lead to corruption. Her naïveté is astonishing in retrospect, but I suppose one could say the same about Marxist utopians. …

Kernels of doubt occasionally lodged in my mind, though. One memorable incident that my mother witnessed and reported to me involved her friend’s husband, an almost parodically Jewish–German psychoanalyst. When his five-year old son told him, in mixed company, “I love you so much I could eat you up,” his father calmly and ponderously responded, “I know zat you fantasize about killing me, dear boy, but zis is nozzing to feel guilty about.”

Psychoanalysis is pretty well over today. It is crazily time- and money-consuming, and it rarely accomplishes anything for people suffering from true mental anguish. Coping strategies and medication have replaced extended, unstructured talking marathons, obsessions with toilet training trauma and alleged Oedipal fantasies. The focus is increasingly on short-term life crises or truly debilitating problems for which some form of chemical treatment is part of the solution.

But when I was a young adult, settling in for no-cutoff therapy with a “shrink” was commonplace, for Jews at any rate, for what I was led to believe were serious, but what I would now call trivial, reasons: normal clashes with parents and siblings, sorrow over a teenage break-up, less than perfect social success.

Being neurotic, or even being thought to be neurotic, was a kind of social capital amongst Jews of my generation. … Neurosis was supposedly a psychological deficit, but amongst highly self-regarding middle-class Jews of a certain stripe—“snowflakes” avant la lettre—it came to be equated with superior intelligence and psychological complexity, just as social activists today, wracked by perceived omnipresent racial, gender and class microaggressions, feel a sense of special righteousness in calling them out. For a highly educated Jewish young woman in artsy circles to admit that she was psychologically normal and got along swell with her parents made her a bit pathetic, a bit of a simpleton. …

Looking back, I can see that blind faith in psychiatry as the Answer was a kind of mania in the 1950s and beyond for Jews who had lost touch with the faith of their fathers, but were too bourgeois and socially conformist to find appeal in far-left political radicalism. Smart, striving secular Jews, who couldn’t for one reason or another complete the upstream leap to material good fortune, tended to gravitate to political ideology. And there were enough of them to make up a massively disproportionate share of the Communist movement in the West.

That agrees with my impression that Freudianism was largely for more conservative liberal Jews who wanted a Jewish-invented “scientific” ideology just like Marx had provided, but who didn’t like Marxism (often for the very good reason that they were quite bourgeois and figured they’d get expropriated).

In the early 20th Century, there were a whole lot of high IQ Jews, but there was a shortage of great Jewish thinkers to idolize due to the Jewish community being so self-limiting until so late. There was Marx, but maybe you didn’t think Marxism would do you and your upper middle class family much good. So that kind of left Freud by default.

Freudianism’s immense prestige no doubt set back the psychological sciences by a few decades. But Freud didn’t collectivize agriculture or invade Poland, so, when grading him on the curve of his era, he seems not so bad. Freud was basically L. Ron Hubbard with a higher IQ fan club, but by the standards of 20th Century cult leaders, he didn’t cause all that much harm.

Freudianism then got imposed on the rest of the upwardly mobile parts of Western culture by the same kind of cultural power that has turned Emma Lazarus’s poem into the Zeroth Amendment.

The funny thing looking back was how much courage it took to publicly laugh at Freud’s absurd pretensions to be scientific. Apparently, you had to have the immense self-confidence of a Vladimir Nabokov to scoff at Freud. (Commenters add the names Wittgenstein, Popper, and Sartre to the honor roll of skeptics, but that just reinforces my point about how much self-confidence was required to publicly dissent from Freudianism.)

One important question is whether the fall of Freud has caused any second thoughts among Jewish intellectuals about how their predecessors ever fell for Freud and how they talked the gentiles into assuming they weren’t crazy and that Freud was important. As far as I can tell, the collapse of Freud’s reputation has not led to much general Jewish doubt about Jewish intellectual influence or to unfortunate intellectual predilections that Jews might be particularly susceptible to.

 
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  1. This is a perspective of a woman who grew up in a Mafia family, where everyone around her was running a racket of one kind or another.

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    • Agree: Seamus Padraig
    • Replies: @pyrrhus
    Freud was covering up, consciously or unconsciously, for a Viennese society in which his mentor, and many others, were having sex with children, including their own. Hence all the weird theories to account for dreams of daughters having sex with their fathers, and others....
    The fact that people, especially Jewish people, bought into this nonsense is quite telling.
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  2. BenKenobi says:

    “Take the greatest Jewish minds ever — Marx, Freud, Einstein… what have they given us? Communism, infantile sexuality, and the atom bomb.”

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    Another movie about a skinhead Jewish guy.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uh21SUL2yw

    Father and son at the end

    https://youtu.be/JEHMnkoyO-0?t=1h40m45s
    , @Hippopotamusdrome


    Marx, Freud, Einstein

     

    He forgot Zuckerberg.
    , @Almost Missouri
    Lol.

    Ironic how the highest quality antisemitic propaganda is written by Jews.
  3. Insightful post, Steve. I think Freud was a pretty funny guy, although he took himself much too seriously. Sort of like an alternate universe where Chris Farley seriously pretended to be just like David Spade. His guardian angel was very over-worked. Nabokov was very critical of Freud, but that does not mean all that much to any one who is not a devoted Nabokov fan: Nabokov was one of those guys, like Jowett (“My name is Jowett, it is not knowledge if I don’t know-it”) who dreamed of a world where they could spend the rest of their life making fun of people who did not agree that what they had chosen to study in college (for Nabokov, that would be French/English/Russian literature of approximately 1820-1880) was the peak of human civilization. Well, Nabokov took himself too seriously too. Almost none of us like people who remind us too much of ourselves, and while the laughs in Nabokov outnumber the laughs in Freud by about ten to one, the two Continental gentlemen are not all that different from each other, so of course there would be mutual dislike (well it would have been mutual if Freud had ever heard of Nabokov). Nabokov and Freud were both way too liberal for me, by the way: ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson or, if they were feeling lazy, Judeo-Christian thinkers like Chesterton or Maimonides, would have done great wonders for both of them. Well, summer goes by quickly for all of us, no matter how gifted.

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    • Replies: @guest
    Nabokov may have taken himself too seriously, but in no way was it quite comparable kind of seriousness. Freud thought that he had invented a science; that he had unlocked the mystery to man's soul! He got people to believe him, and he even managed to influence Nabokov's field more than Nabokov did.
    , @Desiderius

    ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson
     
    Johnson would do too much violence to his self-conception.

    Montaigne was what was needed, and missing.
    , @Jus' Sayin'...
    The most insightful critique of Freudian theories that I ever read was an essay by the renowned management consultant, Peter Drucker. Drucker was born into and grew up in the same Viennese, upper-class, Jewish community as Freud. His parents knew Freud and many of his patients. Drucker was acquainted with the families involved in Freud's most famous published case studies. He points out that it is obvious even from Freud's descriptions that all his patients were suffering from severe anxieties relating to financial uncertainty and extremely unstable social status. Dora was the young daughter of a family who expected her to keep the family afloat by marrying a much older man whom she despised. Wolf man was the son of an aristocratic Russian family facing severe financial and political problems. Little Hans's family was on the fringes of upper class Viennese society. And so on. Drucker argued that it was insecurities and stresses like these and not sexual problems that caused the neuroses of most patients. Problems like these were endemic among the upper class Viennese Jews whom Freud treated and whose high status was very precarious in fin de siecle and post WW I Austria.
  4. But Freud didn’t collectivize agriculture or invade Poland, so, when grading him on the curve of his era, he seems not so bad. Freud was basically L. Ron Hubbard with a higher IQ fan club, but by the standards of 20th Century cult leaders, he didn’t cause all that much harm.

    No? What fate awaits the peoples of the lands where Freud’s ideas took root? How influential has Freud been in causing them to forsake their ancestors and abandon their life-protecting cultures and traditions?

    They are on course for destruction, for extinction.

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  5. The writer mentions how neuroticism was fashionable amongst the Freudians. Borderline mental illness has, in my lifetime, seemed to be as much fashion as real illness… from hysteria to depression to self-harm to anorexia. The status women got (it was usually women) must have encouraged a few to ham up their symptoms. I get the feeling that a few days in the the company of a tattooed biker might rid them of their problems.

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    • Replies: @guest
    "it was usually women"

    Yes, how very odd that supposed maladies cured through talking about your feelings affected women in particular./s

  6. @Opinionator
    But Freud didn’t collectivize agriculture or invade Poland, so, when grading him on the curve of his era, he seems not so bad. Freud was basically L. Ron Hubbard with a higher IQ fan club, but by the standards of 20th Century cult leaders, he didn’t cause all that much harm.

    No? What fate awaits the peoples of the lands where Freud's ideas took root? How influential has Freud been in causing them to forsake their ancestors and abandon their life-protecting cultures and traditions?

    They are on course for destruction, for extinction.

    Israel seems to be doing fine.

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    • Replies: @NoseytheDuke
    Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?
    , @Joe Magarac

    Israel seems to be doing fine.
     
    I don't think Israel is Freudian any more that it's Marxist.

    Insofar as Israel's current regime follows an atheist Rebbe, that would be "right wing nationalist" Zev Jabotinsky.
    , @Clyde

    Israel seems to be doing fine.
     
    Supposedly this nation has the highest per capita psychiatrists. But this graph says Norway, Belgium, Monaco have the most per capita shrinks
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2016/09/06/which-countries-have-the-most-psychiatrists-per-capita-infographic/#51ab201d2083
    , @Wally
    "Israel seems to be doing fine."

    As long as they keep getting other people's money
  7. Dave Pinsen says: • Website

    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud, one that likely contains more truth than Barbara Kay’s pretentious essay (e.g., her mother as an “analyst manqué” [sic]).

    Auden includes this line,

    “if often he was wrong and, at times, absurd”

    but still sees honor in Freud and his enterprise.

    I don’t know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there’s plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists (yes, in conjunction with drugs), and one reason many psychiatrists have moved away from talk therapy in general is because they can make more money delegating that to non-MDs and billing for 15 minute “med checks” instead.

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    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    "I don’t know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there’s plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists "

    The efficacy of "talk therapy", such as it is , was a commonplace assumption of the ancient world, known to the Greeks, Romans, Hebrews etc.( there are any number of Talmudic and Midrashic apothegms devoted to it). The modern era just contributed the professional therapist , or as Eysenck put it "Psychotherapy is the prostitution of friendship". As usual, Freud gets credit for ideas that were well known,while the bizarre and ludicrous, Rube Goldberg apparatus, that is Freud's actual contribution to "Science", is subsumed under the term "talk therapy".
    , @ChrisZ
    I too recalled the Auden poem. Thanks for linking to it.

    I think the feelings of admiration and/or competition he engendered in masters like Auden and Nabokov reveal Freud as more of a creative artist than a scientific intellectual. He was indeed a writer of great power, one whose ideas could colonize the minds of lesser intellectual lights and gain purchase among a considerable popular audience. That's an enviable achievement for any writer, notwithstanding Nabokov's assertion (in Steve's linked interview) that he himself writes only for a few readers.

    To his devotees, Freud assured them that their humdrum personal stories, idiosyncrasies, and dreams were actually texts worthy of interpretation and discussion. That's extremely flattering to a lot of people, and you can see how the idea caught on. The damage wrought by his method, at least to the extent I've seen among friends, was mostly on the level of wasted time and effort, and the inculcation of a certain fatalism in their characters. On balance, I find that preferable to the method of the moment, which encourages wild flights of transformative imagination, ultimately leading to the use of hormones and surgery to address what otherwise would be seen as routine human unhappiness.
    , @syonredux

    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud,
     
    Auden was very good, but I don't think that I would place him above Robert Frost, Donne, Tennyson, Milton, .....
    , @Anonymous
    We've had many touch points with therapy over the years and can conclude, with sufficient experience, that it is a waste of time. Indeed, one therapist related the theory ... and we could observe the practice.

    "How is this suppose to work for our daughter ... you know, 45 minutes a week for $250?

    "You see, the objective is for the patient to form a close relation with the therapist. That will help her overcome relationship issues?"

    "We're sorry, but we're mystified. How can anyone form a close relationship with anyone with only 45 minutes of contact time a week? In a week, we spend more time with the waitress over lunch at the pizza parlor than we spend with you."
     
    BTW: The therapist, like so many others we've known, drove a Mercedes.
  8. O'Really says:

    It has been so fashionable, for so long, to trash Freud that people don’t even remember what was so powerful about his thought, if they ever understood it at all. If it was merely a Jewish delusion, why were the goyishe kopf so susceptible?

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    • Replies: @SFG
    It's exciting and fascinating and makes for great stories. You have conflict, revelations, relationships, motivations--all the stuff of great fiction. It had a huge influence on mid-twentieth-century middlebrow stuff, before postmodernism and the need to have transgender people of color at the center of every work.

    It's not true, but that's obviously of less importance to writers and directors.

    , @PhysicistDave
    O'Really asked:

    If [Freudianism] was merely a Jewish delusion, why were the goyishe kopf so susceptible?
     
    Perhaps you are too young (or old enough but too pampered) to know how ordinary Americans -- i.e., ordinary middle-class and working-class people -- viewed Freudianism back during its heyday.

    I do remember: it was treated as sort of a sick joke. I remember asking my eighth-grade science teacher, back in the mid-60s, what he thought of Freudianism as science. He was too polite to give a detailed answer.

    Dave Miller in Sacramento
  9. Anon 2 says:

    Nabokov wasn’t the only famous writer who
    openly scoffed at Freudianism. The Polish
    writer Joseph Conrad (Korzeniowski), while
    deeply affected by Darwinism (his Heart of
    Darkness can be interpreted as the story of
    a man confronting a soulless and indifferent
    Universe) had no use for Freud and his made-up
    schemata. For example, he specifically refused to
    analyze Almayer’s Folly from the point of view of
    the father-daughter relationship. It violated his
    artistic principles to impose arbitrary interpretative
    schemes on events, he said to Lenormand, a young
    French playwright, in 1921.

    It seems that Freud (and Jung) only became well-known
    in the German-speaking countries, and later in the U.S.,
    although, speaking to Frenchmen, I noticed that Freud is
    still immensely popular in France, esp. among French Jews.
    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent “hermeneutics of suspicion.”

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    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    In addition to Nabokov and Conrad, Wittgenstein was a sharp critic of Freudianism . Freudian thought's popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.
    , @Desiderius

    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent “hermeneutics of suspicion.”
     
    Which makes about as much sense as an "aesthetics of ugliness" or a "biology of igneous rocks."

    The very name bespeaks an utter misapprehension of the practice in question. Hermeneutics is about understanding, implying at least a modicum of humility in approaching the text. Those four never stood under anything in their lives.
  10. Mr. Blank says:

    I don’t know about Jews, but in the Southern Protestant intellectual climate I was raised in, the assessment of Freud boiled down to this: He came up with a “scientific” way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations. Even if his ideas were basically full of shit — which, by the time I came along, nearly everybody agreed was true — he at least opened these topics for discussion, which was important.

    I don’t know how accurate this take was, but it’s what I grew up with.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    Occam's Boner

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hoS1MCF8AeI
    , @Mr. Anon
    "He came up with a “scientific” way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations."

    Perhaps it is not always a good idea to "openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations".
    , @inertial
    This is exactly right. I can actually relate to how Freud was seen by the people of his time. I grew up in a society that was closed and extremely puritan. Sex officially did not exist, even the word itself was too dirty to say aloud. Then, as a young adult I encountered Freud. Mind blown! You instinctively understand that sex is tremendously important for humans, and yet no one ever mentions the elephant in the room. They don't merely pretend it's not there, they genuinely don't see it. As Steve says, when you lack the words to name a phenomenon, you are not really aware that that phenomenon is a "thing." And suddenly here comes a guy who points directly at the elephant. He gives you language, he gives you concepts. It makes sense on some deep level. Not necessarily all the particulars, but the central point - sex is important for our psyche.

    As for why Freud was especially popular with Jews...well, you know, some people do it and others merely talk about it. I suspect the older generations of Jewish males had had disproportionately high numbers of incels... And women after certain time interval always follow men.
    , @Anonymous
    "He came up with a “scientific” way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations."

    So freudianism were some convoluted ideas that would eventualy take physical form as a pink pussy hat.
  11. @Steve Sailer
    Israel seems to be doing fine.

    Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Guy de Champlagne
    The cultural elite in this country is definitely turning on Israel. I question whether there is really something similar going on in Israel itself.
    , @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)
    "Israel seems to be doing fine."
    "Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?"
    - - - - -
    Pardon my obtuseness, NoseytheDuke, but what does "cataracts" mean in this context?
    Your point seems to be that things are going well for Israel at the moment, but disaster impends. Like a luxury oceanliner about to plunge over a cataract? Or does "cataracts" refer to eye-lens opacity? Please explain your metaphor (if that's what it is).
  12. Anon says: • Disclaimer

    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

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    • Replies: @SFG
    Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn't totally out there.
    , @Anonymous
    Kubrick is not my type of filmmaker at all (what I call art cinema is mainly an Asian movement: Russia, Japan) but he was a really great cinema director, he's definitely in nearly anyone's serious 20th century top 20 (and in many serious cinema lovers' top 10) (and he is a giant by Hollywood standards. Scorsese David Lynch and Cimino being two of the few others)

    Kafka is possibly the best writer of the 20th century (for me he is), surely in anyone's top 5.

    Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka -- although in good faith ;)
    , @Anon
    I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as 'Old Stickyfingers.' If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you'd suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself. Eventually, when Dylan's 'inspiration' ran dry, it was because his fellow folkies had learned to avoid him like the plague. I was just listening to a podcast by a musican who said he and a few friends got a call from Dylan asking them to make a record with him, but when they showed up at the studio, Dylan didn't have any songs written. They just jammed, everyone contributing their own parts, yet all the writing was credited to Dylan on the record. That is seriously unethical.

    Dylan was also caught plagiarising a lot of passages from his recent and highly-praised autobiography from other books. It was a Dylan fan who exposed him, in fact. His paintings are just copies made straight from photos that even now can be found on the interet, though Dylan makes zero mention of this. In his remarks about his artwork he tries to give the impression that he thought up their compositions himself. Even Dylan's whole persona is a rip-off of Woody Guthrie, and Dylan's always lied and thrown up various smokescreens about his background.

    When you add it all up, Dylan's one hell of a plagiarist. He's a classic case of narcissistic personality disorder, and he's got the narcissist's trait of declaring that reality is just what he says it is. But he was and is well-protected by an enabling, unthinking, and drooling fanbase. It's going to take a lot of effort to cut him down to his proper place in our cultural history. He's a Jewish guy who's built a career for himself by constant theft from the work of non-Jewish creators that's been going on for over 55 years now.
    , @Dieter Kief
    Hoppla - and all of them refer to hehem - Sigmund Freud - explicitly and implicitly! - (As did the Beatles.
    And none of them gives L. Ron Hubbard any credit.
    , @Mikey Darmody
    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?
  13. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @BenKenobi
    "Take the greatest Jewish minds ever -- Marx, Freud, Einstein... what have they given us? Communism, infantile sexuality, and the atom bomb."

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Jba1-0aXX0

    Another movie about a skinhead Jewish guy.

    Father and son at the end

    Read More
  14. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Mr. Blank
    I don't know about Jews, but in the Southern Protestant intellectual climate I was raised in, the assessment of Freud boiled down to this: He came up with a "scientific" way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations. Even if his ideas were basically full of shit -- which, by the time I came along, nearly everybody agreed was true -- he at least opened these topics for discussion, which was important.

    I don't know how accurate this take was, but it's what I grew up with.

    Occam’s Boner

    Read More
  15. @BenKenobi
    "Take the greatest Jewish minds ever -- Marx, Freud, Einstein... what have they given us? Communism, infantile sexuality, and the atom bomb."

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Jba1-0aXX0

    Marx, Freud, Einstein

    He forgot Zuckerberg.

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  16. A Jewish delusion if you will, but more significantly a Jewish heresy.

    That is a significant deviation from a traditional Jewish view of human nature, as well as being an atheist.

    Point well taken about Freud not being as bad as that other atheist Rebbe, Karl Marx. ;)

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  17. @Steve Sailer
    Israel seems to be doing fine.

    Israel seems to be doing fine.

    I don’t think Israel is Freudian any more that it’s Marxist.

    Insofar as Israel’s current regime follows an atheist Rebbe, that would be “right wing nationalist” Zev Jabotinsky.

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  18. Olorin says:

    Well, there was this in the early 1980s:

    http://www.nytimes.com/1981/08/18/science/scholars-seek-hidden-freud-newly-emerging-letters-first-two-articles.html

    Janet Malcolm covered this in a multi-episode piece in The New Yorker in ’83.

    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1983/12/05/i-trouble-in-the-archives

    Masson–a seriously bright but rather eccentric fellow–published his experiences as a book, The Assault On Truth, in 1984.

    Couple years later he published The Complete Letters of Sigmund Freud to Wilhelm Fliess, 1887-1904.

    I’m not sure I’d call Freudianism a “delusion” so much as the early 20th century’s Nu? Age religion.

    It was up to Freud’s nephew, Edward Bernays, to market the religion to the masses in the form of public relations, using the new broadcast and print media of the 1930s and on.

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  19. Clyde says:
    @Steve Sailer
    Israel seems to be doing fine.

    Israel seems to be doing fine.

    Supposedly this nation has the highest per capita psychiatrists. But this graph says Norway, Belgium, Monaco have the most per capita shrinks

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2016/09/06/which-countries-have-the-most-psychiatrists-per-capita-infographic/#51ab201d2083

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  20. SFG says:

    It was superseded by cognitive-behavioral therapy, which made a lot more sense (thinking crazy things makes you act crazy–you compare yourself to Donald Trump so you always think you’re awful for not being rich).

    The stuff never caught on quite as well in literary circles because it’s not as much fun to make books and movies about. Guy feels awful until he discovers he’s torn up because he hated his father and works it out with help of his therapist? You’ve got your protagonist, antagonist, and secondary protagonist right there, and lots of great scenes where he pours out his pain and makes breakthroughs. Gut feels awful and his therapist convinces him to challenge his self-defeating thoughts and gives him homework? Boring as heck and reminds him of school.

    Scott Alexander knows a heck of a lot more about this than me.

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    • Replies: @advancedatheist
    The Jews Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck invented cognitive-behavioral therapy, though apparently out of frustration with the failure of psychoanalysis to help their respective patients.

    Perhaps CBT works better because it has roots in gentile wisdom traditions like Stoicism and Buddhism.

  21. Anon 2 says:

    While there has been a decline of interest in Freud,
    the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung has been gaining
    popularity since his death in 1961, primarily due to
    his treatment of mythological archetypes (Jung would
    ask his patients, “What myth do you live by?”), the Hero’s
    Journey (which provides an interpretative scheme useful in
    analyzing novels and movies), and synchronicity, i.e., meaningful
    coincidence, that seems to impose order on the random flux of
    existence. People want to know, “Is this a sign from up above telling
    me to play this number in the lottery?” We all know people like that,
    and, at least based on the number of books published, the interest in
    synchronicity seems to be exploding nowadays.

    It’s fair to say that Freudianism has attracted little or no interest east
    of Berlin. Personality theory is peculiar in that there is no universally
    accepted theory but instead we have national schools centered around
    brilliant individuals. Poland, for example, produced a psychiatrist named
    Kazimierz (Casimir) Dabrowski (1902-1980) who continues to have a lot
    of disciples both in Europe and in the U.S. His main treatise is entitled
    “Personality Shaping through Positive Disintegration,” and his work seems
    to appeal greatly to educators working with fragile but gifted children.

    Steve, you made a reference to “invading Poland.” Let’s hope that Germany
    today is less interested in killing white people than a few decades ago.
    Compared to the rest of the world, there aren’t that many of us left. It would
    be nice for white people to become a little less anti-white for a change.

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    • Replies: @AP

    It’s fair to say that Freudianism has attracted little or no interest east
    of Berlin.
     
    It was popular in Russia prior to and after the Revolution, was shut down under Stalin, and has seen a resurgence of popularity in Russia after Communism fell. The recent stuff popular in Russia is often of rather dubious quality.

    Carl Jung's Jewish lover/patient was from Russia and lived there until the Nazis killed her and her children. She had refused to flee when the Germans arrived because she couldn't imagine that they would be bad:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabina_Spielrein
  22. Stogumber says:

    Jewish overrating of Marx, Freud and Einstein seems to stem from a constructionist theory of science.
    That is, the three men were not seen so much as observers and concluders (with predecessors and successors in a continous stream of observation and conclusion), but as genial inventors.
    Now Marx lived too early to reflect the Jewish hype (which was a matter mostly for the Jewish kids around 1900-1950 at search for models of academic triumph). And Einstein was too self-critical to fall for the Jewish hype without reservations (he was conscious that his theoretical inventions, as all, might be falsified by later observations) – even if he deliberately used his reputation for lecturing about things he didn’t know more about than Joe the Plumber. Freud was the one who indistinctly fell for Jewish public acclamations.
    Freud, more than Marx, is responsible for the dark sides of Cultural Marxism.

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    • Replies: @SFG
    It was more the guys who came after him--Norman O. Brown and all of them--who gave rise to the permissive 60s culture. Freud actually thought repression was necessary for civilization.

    Einstein's real advantage was that he was a physical scientist. Your theories are always subject to disproval, and always have to be tested by facts. (He was ultimately wrong about randomness in quantum mechanics.) That's just the way science works. So he had to keep his ego in check.
    , @I, Libertine
    Is Einstein really overrated? I'm no expert, but it seem to me that, unlike the other two, his ideas stand up pretty well against what we can observe in the real world.

    The only thing Freud was right about was Shakespeare.
    , @dfordoom

    Freud, more than Marx, is responsible for the dark sides of Cultural Marxism.
     
    I think Freud is responsible (to a considerable extent) for the dark sides of modern liberalism. Or it might be more accurate to say that half-digested often poorly understood Freudianism is responsible for the dark sides of modern liberalism. Freud's theories were crazy but they were made even crazier by his enthusiasts, by his fanboys (and fangirls).
    , @PiltdownMan

    Jewish overrating of Marx, Freud and Einstein seems to stem from a constructionist theory of science.
     
    Er, Einstein is no more overrated than Newton is.
  23. SFG says:
    @Stogumber
    Jewish overrating of Marx, Freud and Einstein seems to stem from a constructionist theory of science.
    That is, the three men were not seen so much as observers and concluders (with predecessors and successors in a continous stream of observation and conclusion), but as genial inventors.
    Now Marx lived too early to reflect the Jewish hype (which was a matter mostly for the Jewish kids around 1900-1950 at search for models of academic triumph). And Einstein was too self-critical to fall for the Jewish hype without reservations (he was conscious that his theoretical inventions, as all, might be falsified by later observations) - even if he deliberately used his reputation for lecturing about things he didn't know more about than Joe the Plumber. Freud was the one who indistinctly fell for Jewish public acclamations.
    Freud, more than Marx, is responsible for the dark sides of Cultural Marxism.

    It was more the guys who came after him–Norman O. Brown and all of them–who gave rise to the permissive 60s culture. Freud actually thought repression was necessary for civilization.

    Einstein’s real advantage was that he was a physical scientist. Your theories are always subject to disproval, and always have to be tested by facts. (He was ultimately wrong about randomness in quantum mechanics.) That’s just the way science works. So he had to keep his ego in check.

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  24. SFG says:
    @O'Really
    It has been so fashionable, for so long, to trash Freud that people don't even remember what was so powerful about his thought, if they ever understood it at all. If it was merely a Jewish delusion, why were the goyishe kopf so susceptible?

    It’s exciting and fascinating and makes for great stories. You have conflict, revelations, relationships, motivations–all the stuff of great fiction. It had a huge influence on mid-twentieth-century middlebrow stuff, before postmodernism and the need to have transgender people of color at the center of every work.

    It’s not true, but that’s obviously of less importance to writers and directors.

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    • Replies: @Jeff Burton
    This is spot on. And don't forget the dreams! Dali's dream sequence in Spellbound has to be the apogee of this phenomenon. How many novels/movies/shows turned on the resolution of a "repressed" experience?

    And yes, Freudianism is/was a cult. See "In the Freud Archives" by Janet Malcom.
  25. SFG says:
    @Anon
    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

    Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    "Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there."

    I don't see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really "his" movie - he was just hired on to be the director - and he mostly disowned it.
    , @Unladen Swallow
    I would disagree, Dr. Strangelove is most definitely not a liberal film, a lot of liberals at the time the film came out were horrified that that he was making fun of nuclear war, unlike it's contemporary competitors, such as Fail-Safe and Seven Days in May which were in fact is very liberal in their politics. Martin Scorsese ( Who is on the left politically ) has said that he knew plenty of Goldwater Republicans he went to school with who loved Dr. Strangelove as much as he did, that liking or disliking the film was largely generational. Older people regardless of politics hated it, whereas people like himself who were younger, regardless of politics loved it. Kubrick was also apparently worried that American film critics would think Full Metal Jacket was too pro-war and pro-military when he finished it.
  26. Dr. Miller says: • Website

    That’s a little bit like Stevie Wonder talking about colors. Since hardly anyone of you has any real clue about what Freud had actually said this discussion will be unintentionally funny again. First of all, Freud’s “early” work is pretty brilliant, for the time he was working (BTW, Freud was actually pro-German and wanted Austria to become part of Prussia-led Germany). He found out that an awful lot of his patients had repressed memories of sexual abuse. He was on a good track back then but as soon as he was revealing his findings to society he suddenly experienced vast resistance and then at some point backed down and came up with assigning those memories as “fantasies”. Austrian society did not want to hear about that a large portion of its members were victims and/or perpetrators of sexual abuse!

    Secondly, psychoanalysis was actually the main opposition to blank slate behaviorism that you guys despise so much, until the 70s (and Konrad Lorenz, but modern sociobiologists and HDB people do not really like him, and Ardrey) – most psychoanalysts never denied inborn human differences. But most of you HDB guys are just as weird as blank slaters to me. You honestly think that childhood abuse, neglect and terror does not disturb you for life?

    Thirdly, psychoanalysis is NOT dead and is now merged more and more with other forms of therapy. That there was too much dogma in the past is true, but there is certainly a lot of truth in it. It’s more an art than a science, true, that is why it is often handled badly. It is harder to do than putting some data into SPSS. You need high intuition for human emotions and high intelligence and even historical knowledge to understand the “climate” of the times a patient was raised (or his parents). Obviously, most of you autistically-inclined guys here would have major problems with understanding “feelings” and “emotions” since everything is “alpha male fucking the girl” Conan-The-Barbarian narcissistic fantasy. Human evolutionary psychology is mostly a failure at this point, you must be honest about that, it doesn’t explain mental illness in a satisfying matter – and not even basic human behavior. Since we are just starting to begin to understand the basics of brain physiology and so on, we are also just at the start to understand the true meaning of memories and the subconscious. With the “brain split” into left and right, the triumph of the left side in the Western world and culture and the problems that result out of that, we are approaching a field much more interesting than allele frequencies and r-strategists (which can be a part of that, but not the major one).

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    • Agree: European-American
    • Replies: @AnotherGuessModel
    You honestly think that childhood abuse, neglect and terror does not disturb you for life?

    That's a strawman. In the words of Judith Rich Harris herself, rejecting the nurture assumption doesn't preclude certain environments that are so horrible, no one could come out of them intact.

    Human evolutionary psychology is mostly a failure at this point, you must be honest about that, it doesn’t explain mental illness in a satisfying matter – and not even basic human behavior.

    Evolutionary biology, of which evo-psych is a branch, is at least evidence-based and self-correcting. Whatever its deficiencies at this point, for now it remains a far superior alternative to the anti-science failures of sociology and social psychology in understanding human behavior.
  27. Luke Lea says:

    Now that Marxism and Freudianism are passe, what (or who) will be next? Catastrophic global warming?

    Read More
  28. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    “That agrees with my impression that Freudianism. . . .” I turn first thing in the morning with coffee and cake to read iSteve’s often informative pieces on topics he has looked hard at and noticed something about. But from remarks like the one I quote above it is pretty obvious that Steve is flying blind about Freud as he has never read The Interpretation of Dreams, Freud’s magnum opus. Steve is full of opinions about jews as a kind of separate species; it is his blind spot, not seeing a jew as having personal agency. Steve has personal agency, and believes what he has come to believe for his own reasons but a jew can’t do that, not having personal agency, no more than a daisy in a field of daisies blowing in the wind.

    As for The Interpretation of Dreams, after much reflection, Freud came up with fruitful hypotheses many of which have been incorporated into our common understanding without the understander realizing that s/he is a Freudian. For example, the theory of wish-fulfillment in dreams, the notion of the tripartite nature of the mind (id, ego and super-ego [consciously or unconsciously borrowed by Freud from Plato's theory of the soul in the Republic]), the passive-agressive personality, self-censorship in one’s dream work, the significance of the dreamer’s affect (=emotion) associated with the event dreamed (i.e. dream of your father getting killed accompanied by intense feelings of grief means . . . guess what?). Reading the book is a significant step in one’s self-education. It’s like reading The Brothers Karamazov and recognizing previously unknown/hidden psychic impulses in others and oneself.

    Also, one should distinguish between Freud the thinker and Freudian practioners of a not very successful therapy for troubled folks. It’s like “deep thinkers” popping off about Leo Strauss without ever having read anything he ever wrote. If Jenny Strauss Clay (Strauss’ adopted daughter) writes an op-ed piece in the NYTimes reporting that her father voted for Adlai Stevenson twice rather than for Eisenhower, and was not particularly interested in American politics, that has no effect whatsoever on the “deep thinkers” explaining how Strauss is the Luciferian influence behind the neo-cons.

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    • Replies: @syonredux

    But from remarks like the one I quote above it is pretty obvious that Steve is flying blind about Freud as he has never read The Interpretation of Dreams, Freud’s magnum opus.
     
    Isn't that the one that everyone has read?

    As for The Interpretation of Dreams, after much reflection, Freud came up with fruitful hypotheses many of which have been incorporated into our common understanding without the understander realizing that s/he is a Freudian. For example, the theory of wish-fulfillment in dreams,
     
    Did not originate with Freud.....

    the notion of the tripartite nature of the mind (id, ego and super-ego [consciously or unconsciously borrowed by Freud from Plato's theory of the soul in the Republic]),
     
    As you noted, did not originate with Freud.....

    the passive-agressive personality, self-censorship in one’s dream work,
     
    Yeah, the self-censor......Does anyone still buy that?
    , @middle aged vet.
    The Karamazov book is definitely full of psychological explanations that you always knew were true but never heard set forth in words. Not that I have finished reading it: a year after starting it I still have a 100 pages to go...
  29. @Dave Pinsen
    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud, one that likely contains more truth than Barbara Kay's pretentious essay (e.g., her mother as an "analyst manqué" [sic]).

    Auden includes this line,

    "if often he was wrong and, at times, absurd"

    but still sees honor in Freud and his enterprise.

    I don't know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there's plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists (yes, in conjunction with drugs), and one reason many psychiatrists have moved away from talk therapy in general is because they can make more money delegating that to non-MDs and billing for 15 minute "med checks" instead.

    “I don’t know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there’s plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists ”

    The efficacy of “talk therapy”, such as it is , was a commonplace assumption of the ancient world, known to the Greeks, Romans, Hebrews etc.( there are any number of Talmudic and Midrashic apothegms devoted to it). The modern era just contributed the professional therapist , or as Eysenck put it “Psychotherapy is the prostitution of friendship”. As usual, Freud gets credit for ideas that were well known,while the bizarre and ludicrous, Rube Goldberg apparatus, that is Freud’s actual contribution to “Science”, is subsumed under the term “talk therapy”.

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  30. @Anon 2
    Nabokov wasn't the only famous writer who
    openly scoffed at Freudianism. The Polish
    writer Joseph Conrad (Korzeniowski), while
    deeply affected by Darwinism (his Heart of
    Darkness can be interpreted as the story of
    a man confronting a soulless and indifferent
    Universe) had no use for Freud and his made-up
    schemata. For example, he specifically refused to
    analyze Almayer's Folly from the point of view of
    the father-daughter relationship. It violated his
    artistic principles to impose arbitrary interpretative
    schemes on events, he said to Lenormand, a young
    French playwright, in 1921.

    It seems that Freud (and Jung) only became well-known
    in the German-speaking countries, and later in the U.S.,
    although, speaking to Frenchmen, I noticed that Freud is
    still immensely popular in France, esp. among French Jews.
    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent "hermeneutics of suspicion."

    In addition to Nabokov and Conrad, Wittgenstein was a sharp critic of Freudianism . Freudian thought’s popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.

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    • Replies: @The Man From K Street

    Freudian thought’s popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.
     
    And yet, one of the greatest anti-Freudians of all time, Jean-Paul Sartre, dominated mid-century French thought.

    One of my favorite anecdotes about Freud and Hollywood is when John Huston wanted to make a biopic about Freud after the Second World War. Now Huston was an old-school man's man, and when he thought about Freud, he had in mind his being highly impressed during and after the war witnessing the results of using hypnotic therapy to treat returning soldiers who had what we would now call PTSD--Freud had pioneered hypnotic therapy for cocaine addiction early in his career. Someone convinced him that Sartre of all people would be the ideal choice to write the screenplay! Sartre himself was delighted--Hollywood was giving him his big chance to speak to millions and trash Freudianism altogether--he totally rejected even the possibility of there even being a human "unconscious," for example.

    When Huston received the draft screenplay, he was mortified: a) he had had no idea about the whole Oedipal and scatological business, and b) the running time for Sartre's treatment would have run five hours. So he sent it back, with commands to a) clean it up and b) shorten it considerably. Sartre being Sartre, he sent Huston a second draft that would have run eight hours. He justified this by saying "On peut faire un film de quatre heures s’il s’agit de Ben Hur, mais le public de Texas ne supporterait pas quatre heures de complexes" ("We can make a film of four hours in the case of BEN HUR, but the Texas public couldn't stand four hours of complexes.").

    Long story short: Huston tried to cut the script himself, Sartre balked and took his name of the credits, the film didn't get made until 1962 (after years of this development hell) and the finished movie hasn't even been available on DVD until a couple years ago.
    , @Jim
    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.
  31. @NoseytheDuke
    Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?

    The cultural elite in this country is definitely turning on Israel. I question whether there is really something similar going on in Israel itself.

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    • Replies: @NoseytheDuke
    I cannot say but I think any pig can only tolerate so much lipstick being piled on before it begins to suffocate.
  32. pyrrhus says:
    @Guy de Champlagne
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1X-mbUHqThA

    This is a perspective of a woman who grew up in a Mafia family, where everyone around her was running a racket of one kind or another.

    Freud was covering up, consciously or unconsciously, for a Viennese society in which his mentor, and many others, were having sex with children, including their own. Hence all the weird theories to account for dreams of daughters having sex with their fathers, and others….
    The fact that people, especially Jewish people, bought into this nonsense is quite telling.

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    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    This is what Masson claimed, but subsequent scholarship has demonstrated that Freud made all of it up. Nobody (with the possible exception of Herr K. in the case of Dora) had, or tried to have, sex with children in Freud's patient group.
  33. ChrisZ says:
    @Dave Pinsen
    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud, one that likely contains more truth than Barbara Kay's pretentious essay (e.g., her mother as an "analyst manqué" [sic]).

    Auden includes this line,

    "if often he was wrong and, at times, absurd"

    but still sees honor in Freud and his enterprise.

    I don't know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there's plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists (yes, in conjunction with drugs), and one reason many psychiatrists have moved away from talk therapy in general is because they can make more money delegating that to non-MDs and billing for 15 minute "med checks" instead.

    I too recalled the Auden poem. Thanks for linking to it.

    I think the feelings of admiration and/or competition he engendered in masters like Auden and Nabokov reveal Freud as more of a creative artist than a scientific intellectual. He was indeed a writer of great power, one whose ideas could colonize the minds of lesser intellectual lights and gain purchase among a considerable popular audience. That’s an enviable achievement for any writer, notwithstanding Nabokov’s assertion (in Steve’s linked interview) that he himself writes only for a few readers.

    To his devotees, Freud assured them that their humdrum personal stories, idiosyncrasies, and dreams were actually texts worthy of interpretation and discussion. That’s extremely flattering to a lot of people, and you can see how the idea caught on. The damage wrought by his method, at least to the extent I’ve seen among friends, was mostly on the level of wasted time and effort, and the inculcation of a certain fatalism in their characters. On balance, I find that preferable to the method of the moment, which encourages wild flights of transformative imagination, ultimately leading to the use of hormones and surgery to address what otherwise would be seen as routine human unhappiness.

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    • Replies: @ChrisZ
    Same topic, but on a different note: 15 years ago Madonna recorded the theme song for the James Bond film "Die Another Day," in which she ventures into a brief recitative of "Paging Dr. Freud." That must mark the nadir of Freud's vitality as an intellectual figure, even as it marks the apex of his name-recognition in popular culture.
    , @guest
    Wittgenstein had him as a mythologist, which I think is better. He has Freud's "unconscious" renamed Mr. I-Don't-Know, which I love.

    Freud's supposedly great insights into human motivation were more often plain wrong than insightful. Though they were occasionally insightful, so I can see why novelists, dramatists, and poets made use of him. But the Freudian Age of Fiction was not a great one, and especially the "psychological novels" and psychological literature in general during this period sucks. Ugh, how many great writers were pulled down into the muck. And not just muck, but false muck.

    There is a book about literature of the previous century with a title I love, and which sums up its view of man: trousered apes.
  34. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    Sailer, Freud isn’t the Freudians (of his time, and of the following 60 years), and none of those Freudians has been Freud.
    Don’t let the cultists and the cult cloud your view of the founder.

    There’s a lot to scoff at Freudianism for, and very little to scoff at Freud for (just when he thought along racial lines and did politics, 15% of his work — though, obviously, the most quoted and used and known).

    I have read about half of his whole written works, and it’s worth it. He said great things about sexuality, he said great things about the psychology of the masses.

    Freud was a great thinker (yes, one of many, who got more advertisement and popularity than those others for the reasons we know, but this doesn’t detract from him being important. Like Einstein’s ultra-inflated significance, due to the reasons we know, doesn’t mean he wasn’t one of the big physicists).

    Direct your mockery at Montagu-type people, it’s fairer.

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  35. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Anon
    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

    Kubrick is not my type of filmmaker at all (what I call art cinema is mainly an Asian movement: Russia, Japan) but he was a really great cinema director, he’s definitely in nearly anyone’s serious 20th century top 20 (and in many serious cinema lovers’ top 10) (and he is a giant by Hollywood standards. Scorsese David Lynch and Cimino being two of the few others)

    Kafka is possibly the best writer of the 20th century (for me he is), surely in anyone’s top 5.

    Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka — although in good faith ;)

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    • Replies: @Anon
    "Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka — although in good faith"

    Rock Music became a genuine art form and a very powerful & influential one in the 60s mainly due to Dylan. And his body of work is truly astounding, especially from BRINGING IT ALL BACK HOME to BLOOD ON THE TRACKS.

    Also, it's the tension between modes of rebellion and reverence that makes Dylan a genuine torch-bearer of the Jewish tradition. The Bible is a very holy book, but read between the lines, and it's like a cosmic joke book.

    Christians, or at least Christian gentiles, took a straight reverential attitude toward God, Mary, and Jesus. This is one reason I find much of Christian art a bit too much, with sanctimony slathered all over it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XSvsFgvWr0

    There's a sense in Jewish culture that the Book and tradition is one big straight-faced joke. And Dylan's career captured this. He was a joker or jokerman, the title of his song about Jesus. But if some Jews became utterly cynical and nasty in secular mode, Dylan felt tug and pull between the irreverent and reverent. And that's what makes him fascinating.

    And there's Spielberg. Okay, many don't take him seriously as an artist, but he's certainly more than a mere entertainer like Michael Bay. He's more than a very talented entertainer. In his own way, he fashioned a pop faith for mankind. He created his own fantasy messiah in ET and won over the world.
    , @Dave Pinsen
    As a songwriter, I'm not sure Dylan is better than Bruce Springsteen, to be honest (though my high school English teacher was dismissive, describing Bruce as "good music to listen to while mowing your lawn".

    Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey was a surpassing achievement though, arguably a better film than any song or book that Dylan or Kafka wrote.
  36. My favorite Nabokov quote about Freudianism: “Let the credulous and the vulgar continue to believe that all mental woes can be cured by a daily application of old Greek myths to their private parts. I really do not care.”

    Part of a great interview: http://www.kulichki.com/moshkow/NABOKOW/Inter06.txt

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  37. As SFG said above, “Freud actually thought repression was necessary for civilization.”

    Civilizing a person entails his acquiring the habit of reining in his impulsive urge to gratify his instinctual drive for food or sex and instead, channel his life energy into a culturally established and socially acceptable method of attaining gratification. This begins in infancy with toilet training.

    Most readers on this site agree with this. For example, they condemn black people for their lack of having acquired the above traits as being instances and empirical proof of their “poor impulse control” and deficiency of “future time orientation”.

    When a black yoof sees some cigars in a convenience store, he grabs the whole damn box and makes off with it and Lord help any unwitting storeowner who tries to intervene and assert his right to private property. In today’s Liberal world, only a foreigner–say a South Asian–would be so ignorant of American mores as to assume that his allegedly inalienable right to property trumps a black yoof’s Presidentially-sanctioned right to act on his unfettered impulses. Likewise with the looting.

    And now Big Daddy Trump threatens to discipline the children throwing tantrums and actually put the whole Nation–and them– back to work. Work??? Make black yoofs work??? But that’s so culturally insensitive….slavery, PTSD and all that.

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    • Replies: @Desiderius

    And now Big Daddy Trump threatens to discipline the children throwing tantrums and actually put the whole Nation–and them– back to work.
     
    Hey, hey, hey... this is Nation!
  38. I think a big factor in the rise of Freud was World War I. After WWI, purely rational explanations of human behavior weren’t nearly as convincing. Understanding other people (and yourself) as a battleground between a raging brute (id), a sadistic tyrant (superego) and a struggling rationality trying to keep it together was a schema that seemed to fit Europe in the 1920s and 1930s.

    Why did it appeal to Jews more than gentiles? Possibly because assimilated Jews had to tear down their religiously-based culture more completely than Christians or Christian-stock nonbelievers did? Like a deforested mountain that is now more vulnerable to mudslides?

    (Besides of course being a parlor game that high-verbal-IQ types could use to exert power over or at least claim superiority over other people. Which is always psychologically rewarding. Then it was psychosexual complexes among the non-psychoanalyzed, now it is structural privileged among the non-woke.)

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    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    "I think a big factor in the rise of Freud was World War I. After WWI, purely rational explanations of human behavior weren’t nearly as convincing. Understanding other people (and yourself) as a battleground between a raging brute (id), a sadistic tyrant (superego) and a struggling rationality trying to keep it together was a schema that seemed to fit Europe in the 1920s and 1930s."

    Good point. WWI has a lot to do with everything.
  39. The antecedents of how and why Freudianism became so popular during the first 50 years of the Twentieth Century certainly deserve examination and discussion.

    Sure, a lot of the tenants of Freudianism now sound foolish, if not downright crazy (no joke intended).

    Some people are simply in need of a strong hand by which to guide them.

    Having a group of followers, who are even nuttier than the Head Nut, does Society no good. So it is safe to say, in this day and age, that many people, suffering from a Napoleon Complex, are in desperate need of psychological help or a series of stiff injections in order to reasonably aid in having them calm way-the-fuck down.

    EXHIBIT A : SHIA LA BEOUF

    https://youtu.be/URIUoS3V86g

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  40. There is so much in society that was simply trusted 40 years ago, that, once you reach a certain age, you realize was completely broken the whole time. My generation (childhood in the ’70′s) often has genuinely horrifying stories about public schools (taking drugs/drug dealing in the bathrooms, bullying, utterly indifferent teaching, etc etc), that I, with my own kids, am forced to wonder: ‘what the hell were my parents thinking? You’re getting bullied at the place you spend 8 hrs a day: or, a kid in my class is selling pot in the bathroom during recess: or one of your kids classes has a teacher that just shows movies ever day; try to deal with it?’ They simply trusted the system.

    And so it is with psychoanalysis. If you’ve been to graduate school, you are in the English/sociology/history/etc department. One of the other floors is the psychology department. You meet some of those psychology students. And you ask yourself: so that guy, after reading a bunch of particular books for three years (books on a different topic, but similar to the books I am reading), is going to be able to cure teenage depression, or drug addiction, or fix marriages-by sitting and talking to people?

    It doesn’t make sense on its face. What the hell were my parents thinking?

    joeyjoejoe

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  41. Freudianism’s immense prestige no doubt set back the psychological sciences by a few decades….Freudianism then got imposed on the rest of the upwardly mobile parts of Western culture by the same kind of cultural power that has turned Emma Lazarus’s poem into the Zeroth Amendment….The funny thing looking back was how much courage it took to publicly laugh at Freud’s absurd pretensions to be scientific.

    That is nonsense and frankly I can’t believe I’m reading this here. Something about Freud has caused Steve to depart from his usually moderate style and become snarky, even bitter in his expression.

    While it’s correct to say that what’s new in Freud isn’t true and what’s true in him isn’t new, and that his delightful prose often conceals just enough admixture of error to be dangerous, it’s also correct that a rather substantial portion of what he said is just the plain and simple reality that could have been fruitfully explored by anyone but was for some reason left unacknowledged and abandoned. Furthermore, at the time Freud was writing, everybody was adopting scientific pretensions. This was not a fault unique to him. You could not trade in intellectual circles in those days without scientific pretensions. The same is still somewhat true today, notably amongst the HBD set.

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  42. Well Steve:

    Do you ever use the term ‘Freudian slip’?

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Do you ever refer to someone’s subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    You Freudian, you.

    Fortunately no one else does, so I guess you’re right about his ideas being dead.

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    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    You left out the narcissism of minor differences and projection.

    Freud's main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there's virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.

    I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher.

    However, while Freud had a gift for taking the fairly common psychological insights of philosophers and giving them names, those names, as slogans or mental shortcuts, have nothing to do with his conception of the human mind, which is pretty much dead as a doornail.

    I think the popularity of introspective philosophy leading up to psychology and then to psychology and psychiatry in the 20th Century had a lot to do with the decline of religion as a meaningful category of explanation or self-explanation. It's not as though religious thinkers were unaware of these phenomena either, however, they described these things in terms of the "soul" not in terms of the "mind" or the "unconscious." If the cure in the religious context is and was active love, the cure in the psychiatric context was a lot of talking that amounted to being actively loved, which is really what it comes down to. Of course, nowadays psychiatry and psychology mostly comes down to pills to alleviate your symptoms. Which is one of the reasons why Freud is not really relevant anymore.
    , @Langley
    Mouse & Moore,

    In The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages Bloom suggested that Freud was one of the great writers of his era but that he stole his ideas from and felt competition with Shakespeare.

    You can find most of Freud's complexes and concepts in Shakespeare's great characters.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Western_Canon:_The_Books_and_School_of_the_Ages

    , @Abe

    Do you ever use the term ‘Freudian slip’?
     
    Yes, and every time it was simply in unthinking mimicry of something I had just heard on TV or seen in print, and not because I 100% believed I had just uncovered a case of it. In fact, well before I shed my naivete about Freudian theory I felt I was deploying this concept disingenuously and simply finding a lazy way to make myself sound witty.

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?
     
    Pseudo-scientific concept describing an aspect of human personality which philosophers and writers have gone on about for literally 1000's of years.

    Do you ever refer to someone’s subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

     

    Inferiority complex is, again, like Freudian slip, a concept I may have thrown out once or twice in real-life, but always with some lingering amount of uncertainty that my judgement was too pat. Again, would never had done it without years of acculturation to the concept through seeing supposedly smart, talented people (Woody Allen, the THE NEW YORKER writer du jour) abase themselves before the concept. It's like how "Islamophobia" is now a thing, and you have to have balls almost the size of Trump's not to let it infect your mental processes even to a tiny extent.

    Subconscious, however (and all that was supposedly going on inside it) was so repugnant and alien to what I perceived to be my own true self- even when I was being brutally honest about it- that it forever inoculated me from the disease of Freudianism, though I have to admit I was quite happy when experts and "scientists" in the mid-90's came out in rejecting it too, letting me know I was wasn't some crazy crank for being an anti-Freud holdout.

    , @Dave Pinsen
    IIRC, the term "subconscious" wasn't used by Freud. He referred to the "unconscious".
  43. peterike says:

    I was surprised that Ms. Kay hit the nail on the head: Jews used psychoanalysis as a form of status signalling (it also showed you had money to burn). In the same way, Jews of the 50s-70s generation loved, loved, loved having an illness to discuss. Illness one-upmanship was a standard part of any conversation that had one or more Jews involved.

    But the smarter and more hostile Jewish intellectuals also used Freud as a weapon to dismantle Gentile societies, and in this they were exceptionally successful. Sure, the use of “Freud” as a term has declined, because he’s no longer needed as a faux-authority figure. We are well beyond that now, but all the gender-as-a-social-construct, homo-philia, pornophilia, race mixing propaganda, and so on, it all stems from Freud and the Jewish compulsion to be part and parcel of every decadence movement in society.

    Marx was similarly weaponized, of course, in a much blunter way by the Russian (((Bolsheviks))). The great, bloody revolution was never something they managed in America or Western Europe, but they managed a revolution just the same.

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen

    In the same way, Jews of the 50s-70s generation loved, loved, loved having an illness to discuss. Illness one-upmanship was a standard part of any conversation that had one or more Jews involved.
     
    I don't think that's limited to Jews, or that generation. From Auden's poem on Freud:


    he closed his eyes upon that last picture, common to us all,
    of problems like relatives gathered
    puzzled and jealous about our dying.
     
  44. Maybe it’s just my advancing age, but I mostly feel a sense of nostalgia when I read that passage.

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  45. Marcus says:

    Austria was well known as among the most philosemitic places in that area, is there any way a white goyim can not be accused of antisemitism?

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    • Replies: @Jack D
    That's right, Austrian anti-Semitism didn't even exist until March, 1938 when the Germans brought it in their tanks. Hitler must have caught the bug in Germany too - he sure didn't learn it back home.
  46. @SFG
    It's exciting and fascinating and makes for great stories. You have conflict, revelations, relationships, motivations--all the stuff of great fiction. It had a huge influence on mid-twentieth-century middlebrow stuff, before postmodernism and the need to have transgender people of color at the center of every work.

    It's not true, but that's obviously of less importance to writers and directors.

    This is spot on. And don’t forget the dreams! Dali’s dream sequence in Spellbound has to be the apogee of this phenomenon. How many novels/movies/shows turned on the resolution of a “repressed” experience?

    And yes, Freudianism is/was a cult. See “In the Freud Archives” by Janet Malcom.

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    • Replies: @C. Van Carter
    It's likely Freud got the notion of "dream as the expression of a submerged wish" from Shakespeare (Banquo), who got it from Plato via Chalcidius (see C.S. Lewis's The Discarded Image).
  47. Mr. Anon says:
    @Mr. Blank
    I don't know about Jews, but in the Southern Protestant intellectual climate I was raised in, the assessment of Freud boiled down to this: He came up with a "scientific" way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations. Even if his ideas were basically full of shit -- which, by the time I came along, nearly everybody agreed was true -- he at least opened these topics for discussion, which was important.

    I don't know how accurate this take was, but it's what I grew up with.

    “He came up with a “scientific” way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations.”

    Perhaps it is not always a good idea to “openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations”.

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  48. Mr. Anon says:

    I don’t know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.

    Undoubtedly, the Freudian cult was damaging to society, in that it was taken so seriously for so long. But his influence has notably waned. I think that Kinsey has probably been more damaging to society overall. Of course the influence of those two are not unrelated. Freud probably helped make Kinsey possible, and Kinsey’s skewed studies in turn probably fed Freudianism.

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    • Replies: @syonredux

    I don’t know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.
     
    General rule about Freud: When he was original, he was wrong. When he was right, he wasn't original.
    , @dr kill
    They say he did lots of coke, and I bet it was pretty good coke too. Anything is possible for about a year, then all bets are off.
  49. According to the 2002 BBC production, “The Century of Self”, (a four-hour series found on YouTube and elsewhere), Freud’s concepts become the basis for modern advertising thanks to a populist interpretation of Freudian theories by his American nephew Edward Bernays (1891-1995), known as “the father of public relations”.

    Wikipedia:
    “He [Bernays] combined the ideas of Gustave Le Bon and Wilfred Trotter on crowd psychology with the psychoanalytical ideas of his uncle, Sigmund Freud.”

    “The Century of Self” claims that after 1918, when the armistice ended the Great War, the major concern of American industry was to keep US factories running at the same war pace, therefore American industry embraced “public relations-advertising” as the means to convert what was a “needs based consumer” into a “wants based consumer” through the use of advertising and by modifying public opinion to accept popular trends in clothing, cars, and other consumer goods.

    Consider that the same social methodologies were used in Japan after WWII, turning a rigid monarchical Bushido warrior society into the world’s largest consumerist pop culture, all thanks to Freud (and his heirs, the behaviorists).

    It has always seemed to me that even if Freud’s ideas are arbitrary and bunkum, they appear to be a working model quasi-representation of modern man’s mental hierarchy (at least in our Western culture) that serves as a point of departure for further investigation, that also spawned the powerful agencies of propaganda and public relations (and don’t forget “fake news”…)

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  50. Mr. Anon says:
    @Discordiax
    I think a big factor in the rise of Freud was World War I. After WWI, purely rational explanations of human behavior weren't nearly as convincing. Understanding other people (and yourself) as a battleground between a raging brute (id), a sadistic tyrant (superego) and a struggling rationality trying to keep it together was a schema that seemed to fit Europe in the 1920s and 1930s.

    Why did it appeal to Jews more than gentiles? Possibly because assimilated Jews had to tear down their religiously-based culture more completely than Christians or Christian-stock nonbelievers did? Like a deforested mountain that is now more vulnerable to mudslides?

    (Besides of course being a parlor game that high-verbal-IQ types could use to exert power over or at least claim superiority over other people. Which is always psychologically rewarding. Then it was psychosexual complexes among the non-psychoanalyzed, now it is structural privileged among the non-woke.)

    “I think a big factor in the rise of Freud was World War I. After WWI, purely rational explanations of human behavior weren’t nearly as convincing. Understanding other people (and yourself) as a battleground between a raging brute (id), a sadistic tyrant (superego) and a struggling rationality trying to keep it together was a schema that seemed to fit Europe in the 1920s and 1930s.”

    Good point. WWI has a lot to do with everything.

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  51. SPMoore8 says:
    @anony-mouse
    Well Steve:

    Do you ever use the term 'Freudian slip'?

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Do you ever refer to someone's subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    You Freudian, you.

    Fortunately no one else does, so I guess you're right about his ideas being dead.

    You left out the narcissism of minor differences and projection.

    Freud’s main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there’s virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.

    I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher.

    However, while Freud had a gift for taking the fairly common psychological insights of philosophers and giving them names, those names, as slogans or mental shortcuts, have nothing to do with his conception of the human mind, which is pretty much dead as a doornail.

    I think the popularity of introspective philosophy leading up to psychology and then to psychology and psychiatry in the 20th Century had a lot to do with the decline of religion as a meaningful category of explanation or self-explanation. It’s not as though religious thinkers were unaware of these phenomena either, however, they described these things in terms of the “soul” not in terms of the “mind” or the “unconscious.” If the cure in the religious context is and was active love, the cure in the psychiatric context was a lot of talking that amounted to being actively loved, which is really what it comes down to. Of course, nowadays psychiatry and psychology mostly comes down to pills to alleviate your symptoms. Which is one of the reasons why Freud is not really relevant anymore.

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    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    Good points. Good comment.
    , @kaganovitch
    "Freud’s main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there’s virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher."


    This is no doubt correct as Ellenberger details at great length in his "The Discovery of the Unconscious". Freud was clearly lying when he said that he only read Schopenhauer late in life as A)it is vanishingly unlikely that a Viennese intellectual of Freud's era would not have read Schopenhauer .
    B) Freud actually quotes him in his early writings.

    Even as his scientific reputation has crumbled into ruins, the extent of Freud's sheer mendacity is not generally appreciated . Virtually nothing Freud wrote about the origins of his theory is remotely true. Many critics have attacked Freud's reports of his early "seduction theory" patients and his struggles with helping them as utterly tendentious , but the truth appears to be that most of those patients never existed, (or as Steve would perhaps put it) never underwent the formality of existing. This is, the almost inescapable conclusion, to be gleaned from Max Scharnberg's magnificent "The Non-Authentic Nature of Freud's Observations". (it is somewhat unfortunate that the book is written in a kind of ESL as Scharnberg is Swedish ). Freud was much more of a charlatan, than a true believer.
  52. I wonder if another Jewish big thinker whose reputation is in for a major correction isn’t Noam Chomsky.

    If I had to generalize about a lot of the most famous Jewish thinkers/scientists, I’d say that, disproportionately, they seem to let their theorizing get ahead of their sanity checks against reality. Certainly Freud is an example of that. Likewise Marx, who extrapolated economic prediction far beyond any evidence.

    Maybe 20 years ago Chomsky seemed to be on relatively firm ground for a great, lasting reputation — and no doubt he will always be to a good degree regarded as important because of how he forced linguistics to take on a formal approach. But his theory always suffered under his frankly quite arrogant indifference to the question of how the human brain might have evolved the ability to employ just the sort of grammars he developed. This question today is taking on much greater urgency, and his failure to come up with a convincing answer may well take his approach down for the count.

    Again generalizing — probably overgeneralizing — I’d say that more gentile European thinkers, proportionately, tended to create their theories of the world from bottom up, looking first to reality and observation for their cues, then creating models to represent and subsume those observations. Classic cases are Galileo, Newton, Lavoisier, Faraday, Darwin, Galton, Mendel, Fisher.

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs. Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)

    It’s my guess that this strong inclination to theorizing over observation may have something to do with their strong attachment to ideologies in political and cultural issues.

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    • Replies: @Lurker

    In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.
     
    Hobbies are largely SWPL. The people who restore old aircraft, trains, cars (as hobbies) look almost exactly like the people who invented aircraft, trains, cars.
    , @inertial
    "One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs."

    Astronomy and mathematics had developed in the societies obsessed with fortune telling. This describes Babylonians, Aztecs, and even medieval and early modern Europeans. Jews weren't into this kind of thing.
    , @Jack D

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs.
     
    It's not puzzling if you understand Jews in the Diaspora to be a part of whatever culture they live in. The Nazis kept talking about "German physics" as distinct from "Jewish physics" but they were nuts. There was no "independent" Jewish development of ANYTHING because they did not exist as an independent and isolated people. Even if you step inside the ghetto of Venice, the buildings look no different than those outside the ghetto wall. In the Diaspora, there was no purely "Jewish" art or architecture or cuisine or anything outside of the purely religious - things might have been adapted to fit religious requirements (no butter in the meat sauce) but fundamentally, Arab Jews ate Arab food and produced Arab style art, Polish Jews ate Polish food and lived in Polish style houses and even synagogues, etc. If you try to figure out whether you are in the former Jewish quarter of any European city, you have to rely on the most subtle cues - there is very little to physically distinguish them.

    The Christian diaspora was hostile to Jews pursuing secular education (unless they converted or no longer lived as Jews), so it's not surprising there were not a lot of Jewish scientists until after Napoleon granted civil rights to the Jews. There were also few if any blacks in American professional sports prior to WWII , "in light of their later achievements" - was this due to the blacks themselves or the society that they lived in?


    Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)
     
    I think the idea of the "amateur" was really a British gentleman thing and didn't exist in a lot of places. Anyway, inside the Jewish community, musing on science would get you no praise. If you were a man of means with intellectual pretensions, the expectation was that you would study the Talmud. The Talmud does have a certain amount of science and math but it is pretty much locked in at the Babylonian era. But Jews were not completely isolated from Western developments even within their own pre-Enlightenment ghettos:

    http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/10478-mathematics#anchor2
  53. Mr. Anon says:
    @SFG
    Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn't totally out there.

    “Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there.”

    I don’t see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really “his” movie – he was just hired on to be the director – and he mostly disowned it.

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    • Replies: @syonredux

    “Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there.”

    I don’t see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really “his” movie – he was just hired on to be the director – and he mostly disowned it.
     
    Maybe Paths of Glory? But being anti-war is hardly the hallmark of the Left........
    , @Anon
    I thought Spartacus was a pretty good movie, even though Kirk Douglas did a lousy job of looking like he was suffering on that cross.
  54. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    South African neuro scientist Mark Solms tries to combine the useful parts of pschoanalysis and neuro science. Antonio Damasio and Wolf Singer are big fans of him.

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  55. Mr. Anon says:
    @SPMoore8
    You left out the narcissism of minor differences and projection.

    Freud's main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there's virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.

    I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher.

    However, while Freud had a gift for taking the fairly common psychological insights of philosophers and giving them names, those names, as slogans or mental shortcuts, have nothing to do with his conception of the human mind, which is pretty much dead as a doornail.

    I think the popularity of introspective philosophy leading up to psychology and then to psychology and psychiatry in the 20th Century had a lot to do with the decline of religion as a meaningful category of explanation or self-explanation. It's not as though religious thinkers were unaware of these phenomena either, however, they described these things in terms of the "soul" not in terms of the "mind" or the "unconscious." If the cure in the religious context is and was active love, the cure in the psychiatric context was a lot of talking that amounted to being actively loved, which is really what it comes down to. Of course, nowadays psychiatry and psychology mostly comes down to pills to alleviate your symptoms. Which is one of the reasons why Freud is not really relevant anymore.

    Good points. Good comment.

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  56. eric says:

    Eliezer Yudkowski wrote once that a common vice for those who were always the smartest guy in the room is that it is tempting to try an argue both sides of an issue merely to show how smart you are. Truth is not is important as demonstrating your superior intellect, the way an educated teacher tears apart a student’s reasoning why more/less welfare would be a good idea. This is a pernicious path, but very alluring to those select few, why hubris is the greatest vice of the talented.

    Freud was probably always the smartest guy in the room growing up, and so convincing others to believe his these fantastic narratives for different anxieties was exhilarating, the ultimate demonstration of his superior intellect. He had many good ideas, but many more bad yet clever ones. A lot of academic argument today has this tendency.

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  57. @SFG
    It was superseded by cognitive-behavioral therapy, which made a lot more sense (thinking crazy things makes you act crazy--you compare yourself to Donald Trump so you always think you're awful for not being rich).

    The stuff never caught on quite as well in literary circles because it's not as much fun to make books and movies about. Guy feels awful until he discovers he's torn up because he hated his father and works it out with help of his therapist? You've got your protagonist, antagonist, and secondary protagonist right there, and lots of great scenes where he pours out his pain and makes breakthroughs. Gut feels awful and his therapist convinces him to challenge his self-defeating thoughts and gives him homework? Boring as heck and reminds him of school.

    Scott Alexander knows a heck of a lot more about this than me.

    The Jews Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck invented cognitive-behavioral therapy, though apparently out of frustration with the failure of psychoanalysis to help their respective patients.

    Perhaps CBT works better because it has roots in gentile wisdom traditions like Stoicism and Buddhism.

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    • Replies: @Dieter Kief
    Freud's work is a labyrinth - because he thought so many things over and discussed such important themes as civilazation and it's discontempts - which will last as long as civilization lasts, if you ask me.

    Therefor, there's millions of ways to understand Freud.

    I'm a little experienced with some of his thoughts and with quite some books of those, who have thought about Freuds thoughts too.

    I think Freud's most important idea was n o t about penises and vaginas and so on. I think his most important single thought is about the necessity to adapt/accomodate.

    To make this chapter very short: Freud is unthinkable really without his reception of Stoicism (and Goethe's further development of Stoicism) and without Darwin - he took the insight in the importance to adapt/accomodate from various sources - (as did Darwin).

    Have a look at the intersection of Nietzsche, Darwin, Jesus and Goethe and you come across a lot of Freud's thoughts.

    For deeper and more beautiful insights - read Rilke and the sparkling and fabulous letters of Lou-Andreas Salomé - to Rilke - - and - - Freud.

    , @IBC
    Beck and Ellis should be a lot better known than they are, both for due credit's sake and also because so many people could benefit from their ideas and techniques. CBT is more effective than Freudian psychoanalysis because it's a pragmatic set of approaches to actually solving problems rather than just explaining them. It's not as entertaining as what Freud cooked-up, but it's a whole lot more useful to the silent majority of people who aren't English professors or Hollywood script writers.
    , @SFG
    Yup, but I don't need to turn every comment into a fight over the Tribe. The stuff actually is pretty useful from what I've seen.

    I think Ellis or one of his disciples actually came out with a Christian version of some of the stuff using appropriate Bible verses for use with Christian patients.

    Ellis used to have a workshop on Friday nights at his institute in Manhattan where he'd show off his philosophy/therapy to audience members. Chasing after a psychologically-minded girl a long time ago, I went once. The guy was like your sarcastic old uncle ('all your thoughts are SCREWED UP'), and made fun of psychoanalysis a few times.

    I didn't get the girl, but it was a nice piece of intellectual history to be witness to.
  58. I’ve always felt that French intellectual thought has lost the most through it’s embrace of freudianism. Also, psychoanalysis looks to be an extension of catholic confession.

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  59. dearieme says:

    It says much for the good sense of the semi-philistine middle classes that they largely rumbled Freud and Marx from the off.

    Einstein is a different case. First, he was undoubtedly the greatest mathematical physicist except for Newton, and a century has rolled by without a plausible challenger appearing. But the thing that strikes me about Einstein is how perfectly he identified his own niche. He was, as he admitted, no mathematician. There’s not the least sign that he could have been an experimental physicist. But at mathematical physics: golly!

    I wonder how he would have done over the past fifty years when genetics, not physics, has been the scientific Big Deal.

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    • Replies: @Jim
    Einstein's work on Brownian motion contained important contributions to the twentieth century development of the theory of stochastic processes.
  60. Jack D says:

    From the Walrus article that Steve quotes:

    The Jewish psychiatry of the communists is . . . a Godless criminal athiest doctrine of Frankenstein medicine

    The passage above comes from a white-supremacist website, perhaps one that twenty-two-year old Dylann Roof frequented…..

    Or perhaps not… Once you hear a “journalist” or a “non-fiction author” use the word “perhaps” in this way, then run, run away – this person is making sh*t up.

    While it is certainly untrue that psychiatry “does nothing but invent diseases,”

    Roof is not that articulate but he has a point. What Freudian psychiatry does is not invent “diseases” but invent disease mechanisms. Schizophrenia is not cause by Oedipal conflict any more than fever is caused by an excess of hot and wet humors and psychoanalysis is no more a cure for it than bleeding is for infection.

    Steve skips Kay’s pro-Trump conclusion – that if Jews listen to their gut, Trump is “good for the Jews” because he stands opposed to Obama style SJW leftist anti-Zionism. He might be big and clumsy and made of mud like a golem, but “when blood libels take hold of the popular imagination, a powerful creature of mud and clay ready to stand between Jews and the jackals is not to be despised.”

    If you look at the graphs, there’s a big spike for Marx after 1929 due to the Depression and after 1968 due to the New Left. Freud’s big spike is in the ’50s due to postwar prosperity – people (especially intelligent middle class, often Jewish, women with no careers) had the leisure time and money to pursue navel gazing. Feminism was driven by some of these same women. Is there some way to give these women something useful to do without turning them into infertile cat ladies – we could really use their high intelligence genes in the next generation (of men)?

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    • Replies: @guest
    What is a "disease" when it comes to the mind? I don't know enough about schizophrenia in particular, but if it's like other mental so-called diseases, it is a disease only in a metaphorical sense. If it doesn't have bodily causes, objective diagnosis, and prescribed treatments, why are we using the same word as we use to describe influenza, for instance? Most of mental health is in Fantasy Land regarding diagnosis and treatment, and that's not to even touch upon the play-acting doctor and patient participate in which we call therapy.

    Obviously, there's something wrong with people who have mental "diseases." But is the existence of some underlying something enough to say doctors aren't inventing diseases? Is the disease the thing wrong, or is it the diagnosis? To put it another way, if I come up with a false explanation for something affecting a person and call it a disease, isn't that inventing a disease even if there actually is something wrong with them?
  61. Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.

    It is remarkable how influential these men were over such a long period of time. Even though all of their fields have moved on over the last century, each one of them remains well-known, and can easily be used to represent what you like or don’t like about their fields. No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time.

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    • Replies: @candid_observer
    It's no accident that Freud and Marx have seen their reputations go into steep decline. Both of them described in elaborate detail a reality that simply didn't exist. Little remains of the theories of either that holds up.

    Fashion certainly propped them up -- but it's more than fashion that pulled them down.
    , @Crawfurdmuir

    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.
     
    Adding Darwin would be a mistake, not only because he was not Jewish, but also because the social implications of his thought are - needless to say - those of social Darwinism, which goes in a direction quite opposite to that of Marxist egalitarianism. The full title of Darwin's celebrated work is On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. The notion of "favoured races" leads naturally to early HBD thinking, exemplified by the early physical anthropologists, and to eugenics, conceived and advocated during Darwin's lifetime by his kinsman, Sir Francis Galton.

    Such ideas, needless to say, have been purged from the received wisdom on grounds of being proto-Hitlerian, so all that really remains in the popular consciousness from Darwin is a plausible creation myth that dispenses with the need for God. This is the purpose for which Darwinism is now taught in public education, to the distress of fundamentalist Christians and the delight of cultural Marxists. We have lost, thanks to this, and the propagandistic play and movie Inherit the Wind, a correct understanding of the infamous Scopes trial, in which the Nietzschean and anti-egalitarian H.L. Mencken was the principal publicist on behalf of the defendant, against the Christian pacifist and egalitarian William Jennings Bryan. Today we perceive their struggle as one of enlightened liberalism against religious obscurantism. Wherever the shade of Mencken now reposes he is probably laughing.

    A better figure to include in the quartet than Darwin would be Franz Boas, who not only fits in it as a Jew, but also as an exponent of egalitarianism and cultural relativism. It is not through the lens of Darwinist thought that we view other peoples, but rather through that of Boas.

    , @guest
    "No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time"

    Which goes to show you what an intellectual rut our High Culture is in, as implied by the term "modernism." Hey, everybody, we've arrived! We got to the modern era. It's all here, the important stuff has been decided, so sit back and enjoy a never-ending parade of fads to tickle your neophilia.
  62. Langley says:

    Psychoanalysis is a religion.

    Freud rejected the idea of scientific proof of his ideas.

    He stated that you had to go through psychoanalysis to understand its validity.

    Identical to a religious conversion experience.

    Please read Sigmund Freud and the Jewish mystical tradition:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Sigment+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical+&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=Sigmund+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical

    OR

    Moses and Monotheism:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Sigment+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical+&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=moses+and+monotheism

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    • Replies: @Dieter Kief
    eee - what do you want to say - that the religious roots of Freud's thoughts make them strong, or that they make them weak?
  63. inertial says:
    @Mr. Blank
    I don't know about Jews, but in the Southern Protestant intellectual climate I was raised in, the assessment of Freud boiled down to this: He came up with a "scientific" way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations. Even if his ideas were basically full of shit -- which, by the time I came along, nearly everybody agreed was true -- he at least opened these topics for discussion, which was important.

    I don't know how accurate this take was, but it's what I grew up with.

    This is exactly right. I can actually relate to how Freud was seen by the people of his time. I grew up in a society that was closed and extremely puritan. Sex officially did not exist, even the word itself was too dirty to say aloud. Then, as a young adult I encountered Freud. Mind blown! You instinctively understand that sex is tremendously important for humans, and yet no one ever mentions the elephant in the room. They don’t merely pretend it’s not there, they genuinely don’t see it. As Steve says, when you lack the words to name a phenomenon, you are not really aware that that phenomenon is a “thing.” And suddenly here comes a guy who points directly at the elephant. He gives you language, he gives you concepts. It makes sense on some deep level. Not necessarily all the particulars, but the central point – sex is important for our psyche.

    As for why Freud was especially popular with Jews…well, you know, some people do it and others merely talk about it. I suspect the older generations of Jewish males had had disproportionately high numbers of incels… And women after certain time interval always follow men.

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  64. utu says:

    Psychoanalyzing Freud

    Did Freud know how destructive his ideas would be?

    Sailing into New York Harbor, Sigmund Freud stood on the deck with Carl Jung and gazed out at the statue illuminating the world. Their arrival was a much-anticipated event for American psychologists so very curious of what this new theory of the psyche could expose. Whether out of hubris or prescience—and are they not often one and the same?—Freud turned to his disciple and whispered, “They don’t realize we’re bringing them the plague.”

    Was revenge and destruction of Christianity and Catholic Church in particular on his mind? Perhaps it was a very common Jewish fantasy but Freud actually admitted to it.

    “I myself had walked in Hannibal’s footsteps; like him I was destined never to see Rome, and he too had gone to Campania when all were expecting him in Rome. Hannibal, with whom I had achieved this point of similarity, had been my favourite hero during my years at the Gymnasium; like so many boys of my age, I bestowed my sympathies in the Punic war not on the Romans, but on the Carthaginians. Moreover, when I finally came to realize the consequences of belonging to an alien race, and was forced by the anti-Semitic feeling among my classmates to take a definite stand, the figure of the Semitic commander assumed still greater proportions in my imagination. Hannibal and Rome symbolized, in my youthful eyes, the struggle between the tenacity of the Jews and the organization of the Catholic Church. The significance for our emotional life which the anti-Semitic movement has since assumed helped to fix the thoughts and impressions of those earlier days. Thus the desire to go to Rome has in my dream- life become the mask and symbol for a number of warmly cherished wishes, for whose realization one had to work with the tenacity and single-mindedness of the Punic general, though their fulfilment at times seemed as remote as Hannibal’s life-long wish to enter Rome.”

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  65. Guillaume says:

    You forgot Claude Lévi-Strauss. I don’t know much about structuralism, but i like his idea of cold and hot societies. Camilla Paglia hates him. I guess his theories are more useful than Freud or Marx.

    Maybe he will be remebered as a writer. Harold Bloom includes Tristes Tropiques in his canon.
    I really liked his essays in “Other side of the moon” and “We are all Cannibals”

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    • Replies: @guest
    It sorta confuses your point that Levi-Strauss basically was a Marxist.
  66. @NoseytheDuke
    Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?

    “Israel seems to be doing fine.”
    “Likewise the Titanic was doing fine. Cataracts?”
    - – – – -
    Pardon my obtuseness, NoseytheDuke, but what does “cataracts” mean in this context?
    Your point seems to be that things are going well for Israel at the moment, but disaster impends. Like a luxury oceanliner about to plunge over a cataract? Or does “cataracts” refer to eye-lens opacity? Please explain your metaphor (if that’s what it is).

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    • Replies: @NoseytheDuke
    Brevity. It was what I considered a succinct question asking, "What is preventing you from seeing the problems ahead should the current course be maintained?
  67. @BenKenobi
    "Take the greatest Jewish minds ever -- Marx, Freud, Einstein... what have they given us? Communism, infantile sexuality, and the atom bomb."

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Jba1-0aXX0

    Lol.

    Ironic how the highest quality antisemitic propaganda is written by Jews.

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  68. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Mr. Blank
    I don't know about Jews, but in the Southern Protestant intellectual climate I was raised in, the assessment of Freud boiled down to this: He came up with a "scientific" way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations. Even if his ideas were basically full of shit -- which, by the time I came along, nearly everybody agreed was true -- he at least opened these topics for discussion, which was important.

    I don't know how accurate this take was, but it's what I grew up with.

    “He came up with a “scientific” way for deeply prudish people to openly and honestly discuss sexuality, and sexual motivations.”

    So freudianism were some convoluted ideas that would eventualy take physical form as a pink pussy hat.

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  69. inertial says:

    As for Marx, I had to study him in school. Well, not exactly Marx himself but “Marxism for dummies.” Then End of History happened and Marx was totally discredited, or so everyone said. Certainly, his predictions about the future turned out to be wrong. This is what I believed for a long time. Then, just in the last few years, I started noticing that some of Marx’s predictions are slowly coming true. It’s quite uncanny really, it gives me literal heebie jeebies. Marx may turn out to be right about the future after all, although we won’t know it for decades if not centuries.

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  70. prosa123 says: • Website

    One big difference between Freud and Einstein is that Freud remained productive for much of his life while Einstein’s major discoveries were before he was 30 or so.

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    • Replies: @oddsbodkins
    Not really. Einstein published general relativity, his greatest intellectual achievement, in 1915 when he was 36. His substantial contributions to cosmology and quantum mechanics (Bose-Einstein condensate, EPR paradox) come after that.
    , @gcochran
    It's harder when you have to make sense.
    , @guest
    All major scientists and mathematicians have their great discoveries in early adulthood, 25 or so being the primetime. That's the way breakthrough thinking goes, like athletics and soldiering, only moreso. Later on, they're too tired or dull or set in their ways.

    Freud, who wasn't a scientist but a belletrist, could, like novelists, playwrights, and poets, draw on experience to craft richer literature.
    , @Anon 2
    Actually, Einstein's general theory of relativity,
    which was his greatest contribution, was published
    in 1915, when he was 36. The ideas and the equations
    of the special theory of relativity had many fathers,
    incl. Lorentz, Poincaré, and Einstein
  71. @Benjamin I. Espen
    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.

    It is remarkable how influential these men were over such a long period of time. Even though all of their fields have moved on over the last century, each one of them remains well-known, and can easily be used to represent what you like or don't like about their fields. No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time.

    It’s no accident that Freud and Marx have seen their reputations go into steep decline. Both of them described in elaborate detail a reality that simply didn’t exist. Little remains of the theories of either that holds up.

    Fashion certainly propped them up — but it’s more than fashion that pulled them down.

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    • Replies: @Jack D
    Both of them were actually pretty good at describing the symptoms of the diseases of Western civilization that existed at the time that they wrote (and to some extent, even today although conditions have changed in a way that they did not fully anticipate), but what they were really bad at was understanding the root cause of these symptoms and of prescribing an effective cure. Their theories did not place enough emphasis on personal responsibility - in their view, people are victims of forces greater than themselves and need the intervention of a third party to right the balance. This 3rd party (the analyst, the dictator) was not the traditional deity but a human substitute who nevertheless would have had to have godlike qualities to withstand the temptations of being made into a human god. The cures that they proposed (esp. Dr. Marx) were worse than the diseases themselves.
  72. Langley says:
    @anony-mouse
    Well Steve:

    Do you ever use the term 'Freudian slip'?

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Do you ever refer to someone's subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    You Freudian, you.

    Fortunately no one else does, so I guess you're right about his ideas being dead.

    Mouse & Moore,

    In The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages Bloom suggested that Freud was one of the great writers of his era but that he stole his ideas from and felt competition with Shakespeare.

    You can find most of Freud’s complexes and concepts in Shakespeare’s great characters.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Western_Canon:_The_Books_and_School_of_the_Ages

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    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    Yes, and most of what you find in the Shakespeare plays is also articulated by Bacon, Montaigne (just limiting to a couple of notable WS contemporaries) and in all three cases goes back to Classical Era philosophers like Seneca and Marcus Aurelius, to name two. As I said, most of these insights are very old, and goes back to an introspective mode of observation and (religious) observance that is very ancient. Proverbs and Ecclesiastes in the Bible are also good reference points.

    As a Shakespearean, it's normal for Bloom to see things through that lens. However, it's worth adding that Freud was an Oxfordian later in life.
    , @guest
    Bloom is like the guy with a hammer in his hand. He sees Shakespeare everywhere. He pretends to think Shakespeare literally invented the modern way of thinking. Of course he says Freud stole from Shakespeare. He'd probably say you stole this post from Shakespeare.

    Freud did steal pretty much everything, but I wouldn't place Shakespeare too high. Obviously, Sophocles (or the phony Sophocles he built up in his mind) was more important to him, and so was the historical Hannibal. His was an ancient-oriented mind, like Shakespeare in a way.
  73. One of Freud’s most significant ideas was that most neuroses were caused by partially or fully forgotten sexual experiences of childhood, or having witnessed sexual acts in childhood.

    Although this aspect of Freudianism tends to be forgotten, it certainly lives on in the child abuse industry, and it is commonly believed today that childhood sexual experiences and sexual trauma are the cause of mental illness later in life.

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    • Replies: @AnotherGuessModel
    [It] is commonly believed today that childhood [sexual trauma is] the cause of mental illness later in life.

    Is that off-base? Aren't some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?
  74. Jack D says:
    @candid_observer
    It's no accident that Freud and Marx have seen their reputations go into steep decline. Both of them described in elaborate detail a reality that simply didn't exist. Little remains of the theories of either that holds up.

    Fashion certainly propped them up -- but it's more than fashion that pulled them down.

    Both of them were actually pretty good at describing the symptoms of the diseases of Western civilization that existed at the time that they wrote (and to some extent, even today although conditions have changed in a way that they did not fully anticipate), but what they were really bad at was understanding the root cause of these symptoms and of prescribing an effective cure. Their theories did not place enough emphasis on personal responsibility – in their view, people are victims of forces greater than themselves and need the intervention of a third party to right the balance. This 3rd party (the analyst, the dictator) was not the traditional deity but a human substitute who nevertheless would have had to have godlike qualities to withstand the temptations of being made into a human god. The cures that they proposed (esp. Dr. Marx) were worse than the diseases themselves.

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  75. What Marx and Freud have in common is the belief that “conditions create consciousness.” Marx meant this in a political and economic way, but Freud (and also the behaviorists, e.g., Skinner) held it to be true at a more basic level. Whatever peculiarities of action any conscious being, whether a human being or a laboratory rat, may exhibit, they hold are products of its experiences. There is no allowance for human (or rat) nature. Behavior and even thought are entirely malleable by manipulating the conditions surrounding it.

    In the case of Marxism, this principle led to Stalin’s embrace of Lysenko and the belief that acquired characteristics could be inherited. How else could “New Soviet Man” – the Bolshevists’ equivalent of Hitler’s Master Race – come into existence? To admit that there is such a thing as “human nature,” that some traits are innate and resistant to change through altered conditions, would have doomed the project from the start.

    Freud’s influence on the Frankfurt School was to provide an explanation for the failure of Marxism-Leninism to spread across Europe after the Russian Revolution. According to Frankfurt Scool thinkers such as Adorno and Marcuse, a simple economic change was not enough to bring about the utopia predicted by Marx. Adorno argued that opposition to such social progress was a psychological aberration in The Authoritarian Personality. Moreover, pre-existing social structures, like the “patriarchal family,” traditional sexual taboos and inhibitions, and other customary ways of thinking, had to be demolished and rooted out before the “worker’s paradise” could be achieved. Marcuse’s Eros and Civilization is full of such arguments, derived from Freudian psychology and the late work of Engels, The Origins of the Family, Private Property, and the State.

    Modern feminism, along with gay liberationism and most recently the tranny-bathroom phenomenon all have their roots in this Frankfurt School thinking, and particularly that of Marcuse, though it is probable that not even 10% of the noisy social justice warrior crowd could identify them.

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    • Replies: @Dieter Kief
    Interesting - but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
    It's very interesting, that Rorty as one of the really Frankfurt-leaning American thinkers in his latest book - about US Patriotism! - is attaccing the snowflake state-of-mind of nowadays xxx-rights activists. And Rorty hints at the lower classes - and their basic needs.
    Jürgen Habermas was a close friend of Richard Rorty and gave his book a warm welcome.

    I know, that I make our little discoursive world here maybe even more complicated than it was before - but what the heck!

  76. @SPMoore8
    You left out the narcissism of minor differences and projection.

    Freud's main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there's virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.

    I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher.

    However, while Freud had a gift for taking the fairly common psychological insights of philosophers and giving them names, those names, as slogans or mental shortcuts, have nothing to do with his conception of the human mind, which is pretty much dead as a doornail.

    I think the popularity of introspective philosophy leading up to psychology and then to psychology and psychiatry in the 20th Century had a lot to do with the decline of religion as a meaningful category of explanation or self-explanation. It's not as though religious thinkers were unaware of these phenomena either, however, they described these things in terms of the "soul" not in terms of the "mind" or the "unconscious." If the cure in the religious context is and was active love, the cure in the psychiatric context was a lot of talking that amounted to being actively loved, which is really what it comes down to. Of course, nowadays psychiatry and psychology mostly comes down to pills to alleviate your symptoms. Which is one of the reasons why Freud is not really relevant anymore.

    “Freud’s main gift was that he found a way to conceptualize observations that were common to introspective philosophers for many centuries and to give them simple names, as per the above. But there’s virtually nothing in Freud that cannot be gleaned from his milieu, in particular, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, just for starters. The difference is that neither of those two philosophers created such a rigid schema for the human mind both descriptively and prescriptively.I note that Freud always claimed that he never read either philosopher.”

    This is no doubt correct as Ellenberger details at great length in his “The Discovery of the Unconscious”. Freud was clearly lying when he said that he only read Schopenhauer late in life as A)it is vanishingly unlikely that a Viennese intellectual of Freud’s era would not have read Schopenhauer .
    B) Freud actually quotes him in his early writings.

    Even as his scientific reputation has crumbled into ruins, the extent of Freud’s sheer mendacity is not generally appreciated . Virtually nothing Freud wrote about the origins of his theory is remotely true. Many critics have attacked Freud’s reports of his early “seduction theory” patients and his struggles with helping them as utterly tendentious , but the truth appears to be that most of those patients never existed, (or as Steve would perhaps put it) never underwent the formality of existing. This is, the almost inescapable conclusion, to be gleaned from Max Scharnberg’s magnificent “The Non-Authentic Nature of Freud’s Observations”. (it is somewhat unfortunate that the book is written in a kind of ESL as Scharnberg is Swedish ). Freud was much more of a charlatan, than a true believer.

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  77. “In the early 20th Century, there were a whole lot of high IQ Jews, but there was a shortage of great Jewish thinkers to idolize due to the Jewish community being so self-limiting until so late.”

    Heinrich Heine?

    Marx admired him. And met him. And was distantly related. They were contemporaries. But maybe Heine’s habit of writing in German verse blunted his influence in the Anglophone century. Still, his project of revolution through sensual emancipation may be just discernible in Marx, Freud and Einstein (all German speakers).

    Gustav Mahler?

    But perhaps a composer is more of a feeler than a thinker.

    Spinoza?

    Passé by 1900? Or was he discredited?

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?

    Jesus?

    Ah well, that’s not the right kind of Jew…

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    • Replies: @Patrick Harris
    Heine and Mahler both converted to Christianity, but then again so did Marx's family, so I don't know whether that makes them the wrong kind of Jew. For whatever reason, Christianity is considered more effacing of Jewishness than godlessness.
    , @Jack D

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?
     
    Wrong on all counts. He's very well known and Jewish institutions are named for him even today. He's as Jewish as can be. He lived in Spain which is certainly in the West and at a time when the Arab world was more interested in the ancient Western thinkers of Greece and Rome than were Christian Europeans. He is also a remarkably clear thinker - if you read his stuff, a lot of it is common sensical, straightforward and accessible even today. He doesn't seem lost in Medieval obscurantism at all, even compared to Jewish thinkers who lived centuries later (e.g. Isaac Luria, let alone Freud and Marx) whose work is mystical gobbledy gook as far as I am concerned.

    Since most of his work is of a religious nature, this alone disqualifies him from being a thought leader today. St. Augustine is also not on the 21st century hit parade.
  78. Lurker says:
    @candid_observer
    I wonder if another Jewish big thinker whose reputation is in for a major correction isn't Noam Chomsky.

    If I had to generalize about a lot of the most famous Jewish thinkers/scientists, I'd say that, disproportionately, they seem to let their theorizing get ahead of their sanity checks against reality. Certainly Freud is an example of that. Likewise Marx, who extrapolated economic prediction far beyond any evidence.

    Maybe 20 years ago Chomsky seemed to be on relatively firm ground for a great, lasting reputation -- and no doubt he will always be to a good degree regarded as important because of how he forced linguistics to take on a formal approach. But his theory always suffered under his frankly quite arrogant indifference to the question of how the human brain might have evolved the ability to employ just the sort of grammars he developed. This question today is taking on much greater urgency, and his failure to come up with a convincing answer may well take his approach down for the count.

    Again generalizing -- probably overgeneralizing -- I'd say that more gentile European thinkers, proportionately, tended to create their theories of the world from bottom up, looking first to reality and observation for their cues, then creating models to represent and subsume those observations. Classic cases are Galileo, Newton, Lavoisier, Faraday, Darwin, Galton, Mendel, Fisher.

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs. Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)

    It's my guess that this strong inclination to theorizing over observation may have something to do with their strong attachment to ideologies in political and cultural issues.

    In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.

    Hobbies are largely SWPL. The people who restore old aircraft, trains, cars (as hobbies) look almost exactly like the people who invented aircraft, trains, cars.

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  79. Ironist says:

    Freudianism was as good a theory as any of the human mind in its day. As someone else has said, we can mock him now because our knowledge of the brain is far advanced of what it was in his day. Psychology has become a branch of biochemistry. You may as well mock Hippocrates for his theory of the four humors.

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    • Agree: Lot
    • Replies: @BB753
    Not so fast, Wilhelm Wundt was already doing experimental psychology in the late 19th century. Freud was more interested in fairy tales than in actual science.
  80. O'Really says:

    It is quite amusing to see commenters psychoanalyzing why Freud was so completely wrong.

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  81. syonredux says:

    Above is Google’s nGram of books mentioning three Jewish intellectual heroes through 2007 (the last full year of data, I believe). The trajectory of Einstein’s green line makes him looks like the real deal, while Freud (red) and Marx (blue) look like burst bubbles.

    Never really understood the Jewish desire to make a “holy trinity” (to borrow a phrase from Matthew Weiner) out of Marx, Freud, and Einstein. For one thing, it’s monstrously unfair to Einstein, linking him to a total fraud like Freud……

    Personally, I would have gone for a more respectable trinity: Spinoza, Durkheim, and Einstein.

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    • Replies: @benjaminl
    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I'm really no expert, but I'm suspicious.
  82. BB753 says:
    @Ironist
    Freudianism was as good a theory as any of the human mind in its day. As someone else has said, we can mock him now because our knowledge of the brain is far advanced of what it was in his day. Psychology has become a branch of biochemistry. You may as well mock Hippocrates for his theory of the four humors.

    Not so fast, Wilhelm Wundt was already doing experimental psychology in the late 19th century. Freud was more interested in fairy tales than in actual science.

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  83. syonredux says:

    Events after 2007 may have helped stabilize the decline of Marx (his ideas can be useful conceptual tools, just as Malthus’s can, without requiring complete submission to either Marx’s or Malthus’s model of how the world works).

    But will anything save Freud’s reputation?

    If my English Dept colleagues are anything to go by, Jacques Lacan has eclipsed Freud in matters psychoanalytic……

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  84. guest says:
    @middle aged vet.
    Insightful post, Steve. I think Freud was a pretty funny guy, although he took himself much too seriously. Sort of like an alternate universe where Chris Farley seriously pretended to be just like David Spade. His guardian angel was very over-worked. Nabokov was very critical of Freud, but that does not mean all that much to any one who is not a devoted Nabokov fan: Nabokov was one of those guys, like Jowett ("My name is Jowett, it is not knowledge if I don't know-it") who dreamed of a world where they could spend the rest of their life making fun of people who did not agree that what they had chosen to study in college (for Nabokov, that would be French/English/Russian literature of approximately 1820-1880) was the peak of human civilization. Well, Nabokov took himself too seriously too. Almost none of us like people who remind us too much of ourselves, and while the laughs in Nabokov outnumber the laughs in Freud by about ten to one, the two Continental gentlemen are not all that different from each other, so of course there would be mutual dislike (well it would have been mutual if Freud had ever heard of Nabokov). Nabokov and Freud were both way too liberal for me, by the way: ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson or, if they were feeling lazy, Judeo-Christian thinkers like Chesterton or Maimonides, would have done great wonders for both of them. Well, summer goes by quickly for all of us, no matter how gifted.

    Nabokov may have taken himself too seriously, but in no way was it quite comparable kind of seriousness. Freud thought that he had invented a science; that he had unlocked the mystery to man’s soul! He got people to believe him, and he even managed to influence Nabokov’s field more than Nabokov did.

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  85. syonredux says:
    @Dave Pinsen
    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud, one that likely contains more truth than Barbara Kay's pretentious essay (e.g., her mother as an "analyst manqué" [sic]).

    Auden includes this line,

    "if often he was wrong and, at times, absurd"

    but still sees honor in Freud and his enterprise.

    I don't know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there's plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists (yes, in conjunction with drugs), and one reason many psychiatrists have moved away from talk therapy in general is because they can make more money delegating that to non-MDs and billing for 15 minute "med checks" instead.

    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud,

    Auden was very good, but I don’t think that I would place him above Robert Frost, Donne, Tennyson, Milton, …..

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    I would.
    , @Autochthon
    Art is subjective, and ranking artists (unless for sheer amusement and friendly debate) is nearly always an inconclusive waste of time. Sure, it's pretty clear Wolfgang Mozart was a better composer than is Taylor Swift, but even then, their idioms are so wholly different the comparison is arguable. (Quaere: Is Joshua Bell or Charlie Daniels the better with their instrument?) When one is discussing inarguable masters, though, things become very slippery and subject to taste, specialisation in techniques or material, and so on.

    Bearing all that in mind, I'd posit that, with the possible exception of Milton, Shakespeare was the greatest poet working in English. (His poems are all plays and sonnets, though, and many therefore don't even think of him as a poet, apropos of my previous paragraph....)

  86. inertial says:
    @candid_observer
    I wonder if another Jewish big thinker whose reputation is in for a major correction isn't Noam Chomsky.

    If I had to generalize about a lot of the most famous Jewish thinkers/scientists, I'd say that, disproportionately, they seem to let their theorizing get ahead of their sanity checks against reality. Certainly Freud is an example of that. Likewise Marx, who extrapolated economic prediction far beyond any evidence.

    Maybe 20 years ago Chomsky seemed to be on relatively firm ground for a great, lasting reputation -- and no doubt he will always be to a good degree regarded as important because of how he forced linguistics to take on a formal approach. But his theory always suffered under his frankly quite arrogant indifference to the question of how the human brain might have evolved the ability to employ just the sort of grammars he developed. This question today is taking on much greater urgency, and his failure to come up with a convincing answer may well take his approach down for the count.

    Again generalizing -- probably overgeneralizing -- I'd say that more gentile European thinkers, proportionately, tended to create their theories of the world from bottom up, looking first to reality and observation for their cues, then creating models to represent and subsume those observations. Classic cases are Galileo, Newton, Lavoisier, Faraday, Darwin, Galton, Mendel, Fisher.

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs. Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)

    It's my guess that this strong inclination to theorizing over observation may have something to do with their strong attachment to ideologies in political and cultural issues.

    “One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs.”

    Astronomy and mathematics had developed in the societies obsessed with fortune telling. This describes Babylonians, Aztecs, and even medieval and early modern Europeans. Jews weren’t into this kind of thing.

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    • Replies: @meh

    Astronomy and mathematics had developed in the societies obsessed with fortune telling. This describes Babylonians, Aztecs, and even medieval and early modern Europeans. Jews weren’t into this kind of thing.
     
    lol wut

    Jews weren't into that sort of thing? Are you serious? Think about what you just said, then spend five minutes googling. Hint: Jews are practically the same as Babylonians on this topic and have been into numerology and fortune telling and astrology since their stay in Babylon, if not earlier.

    I mean you are aware that Kabbalah is a thing, right? Yes you can cherry pick some Bible verses or rabbinical decisions to say these things were forbidden to Jews but the weight of the evidence clearly shows that it was not, in any practical way, forbidden, and was indeed practiced.
  87. @Benjamin I. Espen
    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.

    It is remarkable how influential these men were over such a long period of time. Even though all of their fields have moved on over the last century, each one of them remains well-known, and can easily be used to represent what you like or don't like about their fields. No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time.

    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.

    Adding Darwin would be a mistake, not only because he was not Jewish, but also because the social implications of his thought are – needless to say – those of social Darwinism, which goes in a direction quite opposite to that of Marxist egalitarianism. The full title of Darwin’s celebrated work is On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. The notion of “favoured races” leads naturally to early HBD thinking, exemplified by the early physical anthropologists, and to eugenics, conceived and advocated during Darwin’s lifetime by his kinsman, Sir Francis Galton.

    Such ideas, needless to say, have been purged from the received wisdom on grounds of being proto-Hitlerian, so all that really remains in the popular consciousness from Darwin is a plausible creation myth that dispenses with the need for God. This is the purpose for which Darwinism is now taught in public education, to the distress of fundamentalist Christians and the delight of cultural Marxists. We have lost, thanks to this, and the propagandistic play and movie Inherit the Wind, a correct understanding of the infamous Scopes trial, in which the Nietzschean and anti-egalitarian H.L. Mencken was the principal publicist on behalf of the defendant, against the Christian pacifist and egalitarian William Jennings Bryan. Today we perceive their struggle as one of enlightened liberalism against religious obscurantism. Wherever the shade of Mencken now reposes he is probably laughing.

    A better figure to include in the quartet than Darwin would be Franz Boas, who not only fits in it as a Jew, but also as an exponent of egalitarianism and cultural relativism. It is not through the lens of Darwinist thought that we view other peoples, but rather through that of Boas.

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    • Replies: @guest
    There's the historical Darwin, then there's the Useful Darwin, who is stretched or stuffed to fit other people's purposes. Like everything else fashioned by our intellectual elite, contemporarily popular Darwin is an up to date liberal (I can't say progressive, because the actual Progressive Darwin was killed by Hitler). They like to ignore his social implications, and pretend Social Darwinists were all libertarians who justified the cruelties of Robber Barons when they weren't Nazis, or both. (What's the difference amongst non-up-to-date liberals?)

    I wonder why it's been so easy to pretend Darwin wasn't a Social Darwinist, and to memory-hole all non-Spencerian and non-Hitlerian Social Darwinists. It helps when your intellectual predominance goes virtually unchallenged for over a century, and you can pretend everyone who doesn't agree with you is an anti-intellectual. Which is the only reason why Richard Hofstadter's nonsense can be taken seriously. (Though he was an engaging writer and did produce some good history, just not in this area.)
  88. syonredux says:
    @Mr. Anon
    I don't know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.

    Undoubtedly, the Freudian cult was damaging to society, in that it was taken so seriously for so long. But his influence has notably waned. I think that Kinsey has probably been more damaging to society overall. Of course the influence of those two are not unrelated. Freud probably helped make Kinsey possible, and Kinsey's skewed studies in turn probably fed Freudianism.

    I don’t know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.

    General rule about Freud: When he was original, he was wrong. When he was right, he wasn’t original.

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    • Replies: @SPMoore8
    I note that both you and Intelligent Dasein have both used this formulation, that the x is not y, and the y is not x, which is famously attributed to Samuel Johnson: “I find much in this that is good, and much that is new; but that which is good is not new, and that which is new is not good.”

    Not surprisingly, that quote may be apocryphal and there is actually even an article devoted to it:

    http://quoteinvestigator.com/2013/06/17/good-original/
  89. dr kill says:
    @Mr. Anon
    I don't know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.

    Undoubtedly, the Freudian cult was damaging to society, in that it was taken so seriously for so long. But his influence has notably waned. I think that Kinsey has probably been more damaging to society overall. Of course the influence of those two are not unrelated. Freud probably helped make Kinsey possible, and Kinsey's skewed studies in turn probably fed Freudianism.

    They say he did lots of coke, and I bet it was pretty good coke too. Anything is possible for about a year, then all bets are off.

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  90. Kay’s article displays a surprising amount of self-awareness. I think it’s spot-on. Thank you, Steve for pointing us to it.

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  91. syonredux says:
    @Mr. Anon
    "Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there."

    I don't see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really "his" movie - he was just hired on to be the director - and he mostly disowned it.

    “Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there.”

    I don’t see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really “his” movie – he was just hired on to be the director – and he mostly disowned it.

    Maybe Paths of Glory? But being anti-war is hardly the hallmark of the Left……..

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    • Replies: @Mr. Anon

    Maybe Paths of Glory? But being anti-war is hardly the hallmark of the Left……..
     
    I thought about that one too but, as you say, the left hardly has a monopoly on anti-war sentiment. And, moreover, Spartacus was based on a novel by communist author Howard Fast, with a screenplay by communist screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, and pretty clearly used the Servile War as some kind of metaphor for the mid 20th century struggle between socialism and fascism.
  92. guest says:

    I wouldn’t go by avoiding mass murder alone. There are other ways to demonstrate bad influence. Look what Freudianism did to the criminal justice system, the juvenile part especially, and, with a lot of help, our sexual politics. Not that he would’ve liked the results.

    When I finally got around to reading Freud, after hearing his name, sometimes as a punchline but mostly as an authority, my entire life, I was shocked at how ridiculous it was. No one could possibly take this seriously, I thought. And indeed contemporary psychology, as pretentious and sloppy as it is at least doesn’t swallow classical Freudianism. They don’t make this as clear to the public as they ought to, but it’s enough to point out they probably find it all as bonkers as I do. (Except the “bloody chunks” they find useful and therefore isolate, like projection and slips and the whole concept of the talking cure, without which they wouldn’t have those nice, fat incomes.)

    Freud is more a name than a body of thought. He somehow won a reputation as the father of all of psychology, or more specifically psychoanalysis, to a point where every high school student, and really anyone influenced by the MSM, is left with the impression no one figured out before 1900 in Vienna that everyone wasn’t conscious of all their thoughts and in rational control of their every action. Freud’s somehow gotta be the Copernicus of the mind, because…reasons. Which is doubly funny, because they also teach us, however poorly, about his many antecedents, Nietzsche and James especially.

    Freud’s rise as Cultural Hero has a lot to do with the times, the same times that could make a forever-hero out of charlatans like Picasso. It has to do with how useful he was for anti-bourgeois insurgents, who took over the culture. It has to do with his continuing usefulness to leftism. It’s a matter of chance and lucky advertising , and bunch of other things. But ultimately, to me at least, it’s inexplicable.

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  93. @Almost Missouri

    "In the early 20th Century, there were a whole lot of high IQ Jews, but there was a shortage of great Jewish thinkers to idolize due to the Jewish community being so self-limiting until so late."
     
    Heinrich Heine?

    Marx admired him. And met him. And was distantly related. They were contemporaries. But maybe Heine's habit of writing in German verse blunted his influence in the Anglophone century. Still, his project of revolution through sensual emancipation may be just discernible in Marx, Freud and Einstein (all German speakers).

    Gustav Mahler?

    But perhaps a composer is more of a feeler than a thinker.

    Spinoza?

    Passé by 1900? Or was he discredited?

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?

    Jesus?

    Ah well, that's not the right kind of Jew...

    Heine and Mahler both converted to Christianity, but then again so did Marx’s family, so I don’t know whether that makes them the wrong kind of Jew. For whatever reason, Christianity is considered more effacing of Jewishness than godlessness.

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  94. syonredux says:

    William James (who met Freud) noted that he “made on me personally the impression of a man obsessed by fixed ideas.”

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  95. JohnnyD says:

    I always found Philip Roth to be more worthwhile than Freud. Roth’s novels are great at psychoanalyzing insecure and alienated Jews living in post-war America. Also, if you want to understand the Jewish hysteria about Trump, I recommend Roth’s “Plot Against America.”

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Major novelists like Roth and Updike are really, really smart. You can become a cult leader by being a second rate novelist like Rand or a fourth rate novelist like Hubbard, but being a first rate novelist is very hard.
    , @guest
    I read some of "The Plot Against America" because I'm interested in Lindbergh and despise FDR. I found it ridiculous, but not as silly as I thought it would be going in.
  96. syonredux says:

    A good book on the subject:

    Unauthorized Freud: Doubters Confront a Legend
    by Frederick Crews (Editor)

    The myth: Sigmund Freud was the heroic investigator who discovered a way to uncover the mind’s secret wishes and repressed traumas, thereby curing his neurotic patients and freeing a culture from its dependence on sexual denial. The reality: Professor Crews argues that Freud devised a self-validating method of inquiry, deluded himself about his patients’ illnesses, and failed to cure them. He founded a doctrinaire movement that has excommunicated dissenters while trying to evade empirical scrutiny. In Unauthorized Freud, Frederick Crews, America’s best-known and most trenchant opponent of psychoanalysis, frames the revisionist case against Freud in selections by historians and critics. Drawing on such astute observers as Frank J. Sulloway, Adolf Grnbaum, Ernest Gellner, and Frank Cioffi, Crews has assembled a powerful case against the coherence of Freud’s brainchild. Free association, transference, symbolic dream interpretation, the Freudian slip, female masochism, penis envy–each classical tenet of psychoanalysis is shown to be fundamentally flawed. Together with Crews’s pointed analysis, these chapters produce a shattering sense of finality: the Freudian revolution is now a thing of the past.

    https://www.amazon.com/Unauthorized-Freud-Doubters-Confront-Legend/dp/0670872210

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  97. Jack D says:
    @candid_observer
    I wonder if another Jewish big thinker whose reputation is in for a major correction isn't Noam Chomsky.

    If I had to generalize about a lot of the most famous Jewish thinkers/scientists, I'd say that, disproportionately, they seem to let their theorizing get ahead of their sanity checks against reality. Certainly Freud is an example of that. Likewise Marx, who extrapolated economic prediction far beyond any evidence.

    Maybe 20 years ago Chomsky seemed to be on relatively firm ground for a great, lasting reputation -- and no doubt he will always be to a good degree regarded as important because of how he forced linguistics to take on a formal approach. But his theory always suffered under his frankly quite arrogant indifference to the question of how the human brain might have evolved the ability to employ just the sort of grammars he developed. This question today is taking on much greater urgency, and his failure to come up with a convincing answer may well take his approach down for the count.

    Again generalizing -- probably overgeneralizing -- I'd say that more gentile European thinkers, proportionately, tended to create their theories of the world from bottom up, looking first to reality and observation for their cues, then creating models to represent and subsume those observations. Classic cases are Galileo, Newton, Lavoisier, Faraday, Darwin, Galton, Mendel, Fisher.

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs. Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)

    It's my guess that this strong inclination to theorizing over observation may have something to do with their strong attachment to ideologies in political and cultural issues.

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs.

    It’s not puzzling if you understand Jews in the Diaspora to be a part of whatever culture they live in. The Nazis kept talking about “German physics” as distinct from “Jewish physics” but they were nuts. There was no “independent” Jewish development of ANYTHING because they did not exist as an independent and isolated people. Even if you step inside the ghetto of Venice, the buildings look no different than those outside the ghetto wall. In the Diaspora, there was no purely “Jewish” art or architecture or cuisine or anything outside of the purely religious – things might have been adapted to fit religious requirements (no butter in the meat sauce) but fundamentally, Arab Jews ate Arab food and produced Arab style art, Polish Jews ate Polish food and lived in Polish style houses and even synagogues, etc. If you try to figure out whether you are in the former Jewish quarter of any European city, you have to rely on the most subtle cues – there is very little to physically distinguish them.

    The Christian diaspora was hostile to Jews pursuing secular education (unless they converted or no longer lived as Jews), so it’s not surprising there were not a lot of Jewish scientists until after Napoleon granted civil rights to the Jews. There were also few if any blacks in American professional sports prior to WWII , “in light of their later achievements” – was this due to the blacks themselves or the society that they lived in?

    Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)

    I think the idea of the “amateur” was really a British gentleman thing and didn’t exist in a lot of places. Anyway, inside the Jewish community, musing on science would get you no praise. If you were a man of means with intellectual pretensions, the expectation was that you would study the Talmud. The Talmud does have a certain amount of science and math but it is pretty much locked in at the Babylonian era. But Jews were not completely isolated from Western developments even within their own pre-Enlightenment ghettos:

    http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/10478-mathematics#anchor2

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    • Replies: @gcochran
    "Polish Jews ate Polish food"


    Especially kaszanka.
    , @candid_observer
    I don't see much of analogy between the situation of Jews before, say, the nineteenth century, and that of blacks before they made their way into professional sports. Blacks just weren't allowed, so of course they weren't represented in professional sports until afterwards -- there's nothing to explain there.

    But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?

    There are any number of gentile scientists who lacked any real formal education in math or science and yet, seemingly because they couldn't stop themselves from pursuing the subjects, in the end achieved great things. Some of these scientists/mathematicians managed to do this despite having to make a living at other things. If you read about the lives of, say, George Green, Michael Farady, Oliver Heaviside, Nathaniel Bowditch, or for that matter Ben Franklin, you get the strong sense that these were men who were determined to learn everything they could about a subject that fascinated them, despite their lack of formal education or independent means. I'm not sure I can think of a Jewish equivalent -- though perhaps Spinoza, albeit not a scientist, comes closest.

    And it's also insufficient, I think, to say that Jews only appreciated Talmudic studies as an avocation. Many of the gentile "amateur" scientists, including those I just mentioned, seemed to be driven to do their science or math at the expense of everything that might naturally bring them honor and appreciation -- certainly many of us know STEM people who appear to be so motivated.

    Another thing that strikes me as quite peculiar is how little mathematics Jews seemed to have developed even to do the sort of work for which they were uniquely employed, namely as money lenders. As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what's going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.
  98. ChrisZ says:
    @ChrisZ
    I too recalled the Auden poem. Thanks for linking to it.

    I think the feelings of admiration and/or competition he engendered in masters like Auden and Nabokov reveal Freud as more of a creative artist than a scientific intellectual. He was indeed a writer of great power, one whose ideas could colonize the minds of lesser intellectual lights and gain purchase among a considerable popular audience. That's an enviable achievement for any writer, notwithstanding Nabokov's assertion (in Steve's linked interview) that he himself writes only for a few readers.

    To his devotees, Freud assured them that their humdrum personal stories, idiosyncrasies, and dreams were actually texts worthy of interpretation and discussion. That's extremely flattering to a lot of people, and you can see how the idea caught on. The damage wrought by his method, at least to the extent I've seen among friends, was mostly on the level of wasted time and effort, and the inculcation of a certain fatalism in their characters. On balance, I find that preferable to the method of the moment, which encourages wild flights of transformative imagination, ultimately leading to the use of hormones and surgery to address what otherwise would be seen as routine human unhappiness.

    Same topic, but on a different note: 15 years ago Madonna recorded the theme song for the James Bond film “Die Another Day,” in which she ventures into a brief recitative of “Paging Dr. Freud.” That must mark the nadir of Freud’s vitality as an intellectual figure, even as it marks the apex of his name-recognition in popular culture.

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  99. guest says:
    @Jack D
    From the Walrus article that Steve quotes:

    The Jewish psychiatry of the communists is . . . a Godless criminal athiest doctrine of Frankenstein medicine

    The passage above comes from a white-supremacist website, perhaps one that twenty-two-year old Dylann Roof frequented.....
     
    Or perhaps not... Once you hear a "journalist" or a "non-fiction author" use the word "perhaps" in this way, then run, run away - this person is making sh*t up.

    While it is certainly untrue that psychiatry “does nothing but invent diseases,”
     
    Roof is not that articulate but he has a point. What Freudian psychiatry does is not invent "diseases" but invent disease mechanisms. Schizophrenia is not cause by Oedipal conflict any more than fever is caused by an excess of hot and wet humors and psychoanalysis is no more a cure for it than bleeding is for infection.

    Steve skips Kay's pro-Trump conclusion - that if Jews listen to their gut, Trump is "good for the Jews" because he stands opposed to Obama style SJW leftist anti-Zionism. He might be big and clumsy and made of mud like a golem, but "when blood libels take hold of the popular imagination, a powerful creature of mud and clay ready to stand between Jews and the jackals is not to be despised."

    If you look at the graphs, there's a big spike for Marx after 1929 due to the Depression and after 1968 due to the New Left. Freud's big spike is in the '50s due to postwar prosperity - people (especially intelligent middle class, often Jewish, women with no careers) had the leisure time and money to pursue navel gazing. Feminism was driven by some of these same women. Is there some way to give these women something useful to do without turning them into infertile cat ladies - we could really use their high intelligence genes in the next generation (of men)?

    What is a “disease” when it comes to the mind? I don’t know enough about schizophrenia in particular, but if it’s like other mental so-called diseases, it is a disease only in a metaphorical sense. If it doesn’t have bodily causes, objective diagnosis, and prescribed treatments, why are we using the same word as we use to describe influenza, for instance? Most of mental health is in Fantasy Land regarding diagnosis and treatment, and that’s not to even touch upon the play-acting doctor and patient participate in which we call therapy.

    Obviously, there’s something wrong with people who have mental “diseases.” But is the existence of some underlying something enough to say doctors aren’t inventing diseases? Is the disease the thing wrong, or is it the diagnosis? To put it another way, if I come up with a false explanation for something affecting a person and call it a disease, isn’t that inventing a disease even if there actually is something wrong with them?

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    That's essentially what the gays said to get homosexuality taken out of the DSM.
    , @Jack D
    There is absolutely no doubt that schizophrenia is an actual disease of the brain just as much as any other clinical disease. Hallucinations, delusions, disorganized thinking - these are not the product of normal brains (and have nothing to do with how you were treated as a kid). Certain drugs have effects that mimic the symptoms of schizophrenia, and other drugs relieve its symptoms, which indicates that it is due to abnormal brain chemistry involving various neurotransmitters (dopamine. serotonin, etc.) Your nervous system doesn't run purely on electricity like a computer - it's a chemical computer and if the chemicals that send the signals are scrambled then the messages will be scrambled too. There are other hints - for example, virtual all schizophrenics are smokers (for reason not yet understood but maybe the nicotine relieves them in some way).
  100. @prosa123
    One big difference between Freud and Einstein is that Freud remained productive for much of his life while Einstein's major discoveries were before he was 30 or so.

    Not really. Einstein published general relativity, his greatest intellectual achievement, in 1915 when he was 36. His substantial contributions to cosmology and quantum mechanics (Bose-Einstein condensate, EPR paradox) come after that.

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  101. guest says:
    @TelfoedJohn
    The writer mentions how neuroticism was fashionable amongst the Freudians. Borderline mental illness has, in my lifetime, seemed to be as much fashion as real illness... from hysteria to depression to self-harm to anorexia. The status women got (it was usually women) must have encouraged a few to ham up their symptoms. I get the feeling that a few days in the the company of a tattooed biker might rid them of their problems.

    “it was usually women”

    Yes, how very odd that supposed maladies cured through talking about your feelings affected women in particular./s

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  102. Gringo says:

    When I was an undergrad in the ’70, I worked a year as a Mental Health Worker, a.k.a. Aide, in a private psych hospital. As this was expensive – back then $100/day- for patients, there was an emphasis on attempting a quick turnaround for patients. This precluded the Freudian approach, which is long and drawn out. Though it is possible that those with generous insurance plans, enabling them to stay for a year, got some measure of Freudian treatment in their individual sessions.

    Several years later, a fellow student who was a pre-med, knowing I had worked as an Aide, asked me about Freud. My reply was that Freud was a poet, not a MD who cured people.

    Of the three intellectual giants- Darwin, Marx, and Freud- Darwin has better stood the test of time.

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  103. @middle aged vet.
    Insightful post, Steve. I think Freud was a pretty funny guy, although he took himself much too seriously. Sort of like an alternate universe where Chris Farley seriously pretended to be just like David Spade. His guardian angel was very over-worked. Nabokov was very critical of Freud, but that does not mean all that much to any one who is not a devoted Nabokov fan: Nabokov was one of those guys, like Jowett ("My name is Jowett, it is not knowledge if I don't know-it") who dreamed of a world where they could spend the rest of their life making fun of people who did not agree that what they had chosen to study in college (for Nabokov, that would be French/English/Russian literature of approximately 1820-1880) was the peak of human civilization. Well, Nabokov took himself too seriously too. Almost none of us like people who remind us too much of ourselves, and while the laughs in Nabokov outnumber the laughs in Freud by about ten to one, the two Continental gentlemen are not all that different from each other, so of course there would be mutual dislike (well it would have been mutual if Freud had ever heard of Nabokov). Nabokov and Freud were both way too liberal for me, by the way: ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson or, if they were feeling lazy, Judeo-Christian thinkers like Chesterton or Maimonides, would have done great wonders for both of them. Well, summer goes by quickly for all of us, no matter how gifted.

    ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson

    Johnson would do too much violence to his self-conception.

    Montaigne was what was needed, and missing.

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    • Replies: @middle aged vet.
    Good point. I mentioned Johnson for the Judeo-Christian angle; but Montaigne is a kinder introduction to a better view of the world.
  104. guest says:
    @ChrisZ
    I too recalled the Auden poem. Thanks for linking to it.

    I think the feelings of admiration and/or competition he engendered in masters like Auden and Nabokov reveal Freud as more of a creative artist than a scientific intellectual. He was indeed a writer of great power, one whose ideas could colonize the minds of lesser intellectual lights and gain purchase among a considerable popular audience. That's an enviable achievement for any writer, notwithstanding Nabokov's assertion (in Steve's linked interview) that he himself writes only for a few readers.

    To his devotees, Freud assured them that their humdrum personal stories, idiosyncrasies, and dreams were actually texts worthy of interpretation and discussion. That's extremely flattering to a lot of people, and you can see how the idea caught on. The damage wrought by his method, at least to the extent I've seen among friends, was mostly on the level of wasted time and effort, and the inculcation of a certain fatalism in their characters. On balance, I find that preferable to the method of the moment, which encourages wild flights of transformative imagination, ultimately leading to the use of hormones and surgery to address what otherwise would be seen as routine human unhappiness.

    Wittgenstein had him as a mythologist, which I think is better. He has Freud’s “unconscious” renamed Mr. I-Don’t-Know, which I love.

    Freud’s supposedly great insights into human motivation were more often plain wrong than insightful. Though they were occasionally insightful, so I can see why novelists, dramatists, and poets made use of him. But the Freudian Age of Fiction was not a great one, and especially the “psychological novels” and psychological literature in general during this period sucks. Ugh, how many great writers were pulled down into the muck. And not just muck, but false muck.

    There is a book about literature of the previous century with a title I love, and which sums up its view of man: trousered apes.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    In Psychology 101 in 1977 we had to read an early novel by William Goldman that laboriously illustrated Freudian ideas in its plot. It was okay. Other stuff by William Goldman where he's just illustrating his own ideas -- Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, Princess Bride, Adventures in the Screen Trade -- are much better.
    , @ChrisZ
    Thanks for the interesting reply, Guest. Those "psychological novelists" would be among the "lesser intellectual lights" I mentioned, and I agree with your assessment of their awfulness.

    But Freud himself was a writer of power and even grace. Though many of his ideas turned out wrong, and all are now old hat, his literary insight can still be riveting, and must have seemed revelatory at the time.

    And Freud was, of course, a civilized and learned man--however much he may be blamed for some of the ills that have eroded civilization and learning in later times. I've been a critic of Freud and a skeptic of his method for a long time. But as his reputation has declined I've found a soft spot in my heart for him, especially when I compare him to the vulgarity, ignorance, and decadence of the cultural "authorities" of our own day.
  105. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Anon
    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

    I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as ‘Old Stickyfingers.’ If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you’d suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself. Eventually, when Dylan’s ‘inspiration’ ran dry, it was because his fellow folkies had learned to avoid him like the plague. I was just listening to a podcast by a musican who said he and a few friends got a call from Dylan asking them to make a record with him, but when they showed up at the studio, Dylan didn’t have any songs written. They just jammed, everyone contributing their own parts, yet all the writing was credited to Dylan on the record. That is seriously unethical.

    Dylan was also caught plagiarising a lot of passages from his recent and highly-praised autobiography from other books. It was a Dylan fan who exposed him, in fact. His paintings are just copies made straight from photos that even now can be found on the interet, though Dylan makes zero mention of this. In his remarks about his artwork he tries to give the impression that he thought up their compositions himself. Even Dylan’s whole persona is a rip-off of Woody Guthrie, and Dylan’s always lied and thrown up various smokescreens about his background.

    When you add it all up, Dylan’s one hell of a plagiarist. He’s a classic case of narcissistic personality disorder, and he’s got the narcissist’s trait of declaring that reality is just what he says it is. But he was and is well-protected by an enabling, unthinking, and drooling fanbase. It’s going to take a lot of effort to cut him down to his proper place in our cultural history. He’s a Jewish guy who’s built a career for himself by constant theft from the work of non-Jewish creators that’s been going on for over 55 years now.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    "I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as ‘Old Stickyfingers.’ "

    Well, if VISION OF JOHANNA is the result of sticky-fingering, we need more sticky-fingering.

    "If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you’d suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself."

    So, who wrote/played JUST LIKE A WOMAN for Dylan before he stole it?

    I think what the envious folkies are saying that they had some ideas, and Dylan used some of them, along with other ideas, as inspiration for his songs.

    Happens all the time in art.

    Opening scene of THE WILD BUNCH with ants and scorpions. Peckinpah got the idea from Emilio Fernandez who said that, as a child, he and his amigos would kill ants and scorpions that way when soldiers rode into town.

  106. Jack D says:
    @Almost Missouri

    "In the early 20th Century, there were a whole lot of high IQ Jews, but there was a shortage of great Jewish thinkers to idolize due to the Jewish community being so self-limiting until so late."
     
    Heinrich Heine?

    Marx admired him. And met him. And was distantly related. They were contemporaries. But maybe Heine's habit of writing in German verse blunted his influence in the Anglophone century. Still, his project of revolution through sensual emancipation may be just discernible in Marx, Freud and Einstein (all German speakers).

    Gustav Mahler?

    But perhaps a composer is more of a feeler than a thinker.

    Spinoza?

    Passé by 1900? Or was he discredited?

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?

    Jesus?

    Ah well, that's not the right kind of Jew...

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?

    Wrong on all counts. He’s very well known and Jewish institutions are named for him even today. He’s as Jewish as can be. He lived in Spain which is certainly in the West and at a time when the Arab world was more interested in the ancient Western thinkers of Greece and Rome than were Christian Europeans. He is also a remarkably clear thinker – if you read his stuff, a lot of it is common sensical, straightforward and accessible even today. He doesn’t seem lost in Medieval obscurantism at all, even compared to Jewish thinkers who lived centuries later (e.g. Isaac Luria, let alone Freud and Marx) whose work is mystical gobbledy gook as far as I am concerned.

    Since most of his work is of a religious nature, this alone disqualifies him from being a thought leader today. St. Augustine is also not on the 21st century hit parade.

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    • Replies: @Almost Missouri
    But he wore funny clothes...
    , @Almost Missouri
    But seriously, I agree that everyone on that list was one of the greats. The question I was trying to answer is why the bourgeois Jews of the turn-of-the-century West did not adopt them as idols instead of the false prophets, Freud and Marx? And since the bourgeois are notoriously moved by style over substance, I was wondering aloud if that might have had something to do with it, especially in the case of Maimonides, who was truly a giant, the more so for his achievements in a time and place that the modern West does not usually consider conducive to greatness.

    Whatever else they were, Freud, Marx and Einstein were all sons of the mitteleuropäisch bourgeoisie who wore suits with cravats and could speak hochdeutsch while drinking their coffee with correct etiquette. Well, Marx had wild hair, but that's why he was the bad boy pin-up for the proletarians and the outcasts.

    Maimonides wasn't any of these things. He was just good and true. But of such things, idols are not made.

    Mahler was these things, was something of a celebrity, had a hot shiksa wife (well, maybe that was a liability with distaff Hebrews), but he was a feeler not a thinker, and not really quotable as a basis of a philosophical system.

    The continuing obscurity of Heine still puzzles me. He had the bourgeois virtues plus a very modern bourgeois-revolutionary streak. And he was in some sense the source code for those later inferior minds Marx and Freud, who certainly, in the case of Marx, and almost certainly, in the case of Freud, read him.

  107. guest says:
    @Benjamin I. Espen
    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.

    It is remarkable how influential these men were over such a long period of time. Even though all of their fields have moved on over the last century, each one of them remains well-known, and can easily be used to represent what you like or don't like about their fields. No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time.

    “No one of comparable stature has arisen to replace any of them in the mind of the educated public, despite the passage of much time”

    Which goes to show you what an intellectual rut our High Culture is in, as implied by the term “modernism.” Hey, everybody, we’ve arrived! We got to the modern era. It’s all here, the important stuff has been decided, so sit back and enjoy a never-ending parade of fads to tickle your neophilia.

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  108. SPMoore8 says:
    @Langley
    Mouse & Moore,

    In The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages Bloom suggested that Freud was one of the great writers of his era but that he stole his ideas from and felt competition with Shakespeare.

    You can find most of Freud's complexes and concepts in Shakespeare's great characters.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Western_Canon:_The_Books_and_School_of_the_Ages

    Yes, and most of what you find in the Shakespeare plays is also articulated by Bacon, Montaigne (just limiting to a couple of notable WS contemporaries) and in all three cases goes back to Classical Era philosophers like Seneca and Marcus Aurelius, to name two. As I said, most of these insights are very old, and goes back to an introspective mode of observation and (religious) observance that is very ancient. Proverbs and Ecclesiastes in the Bible are also good reference points.

    As a Shakespearean, it’s normal for Bloom to see things through that lens. However, it’s worth adding that Freud was an Oxfordian later in life.

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  109. guest says:
    @Guillaume
    You forgot Claude Lévi-Strauss. I don't know much about structuralism, but i like his idea of cold and hot societies. Camilla Paglia hates him. I guess his theories are more useful than Freud or Marx.

    Maybe he will be remebered as a writer. Harold Bloom includes Tristes Tropiques in his canon.
    I really liked his essays in "Other side of the moon" and "We are all Cannibals"

    It sorta confuses your point that Levi-Strauss basically was a Marxist.

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  110. @Anon 2
    Nabokov wasn't the only famous writer who
    openly scoffed at Freudianism. The Polish
    writer Joseph Conrad (Korzeniowski), while
    deeply affected by Darwinism (his Heart of
    Darkness can be interpreted as the story of
    a man confronting a soulless and indifferent
    Universe) had no use for Freud and his made-up
    schemata. For example, he specifically refused to
    analyze Almayer's Folly from the point of view of
    the father-daughter relationship. It violated his
    artistic principles to impose arbitrary interpretative
    schemes on events, he said to Lenormand, a young
    French playwright, in 1921.

    It seems that Freud (and Jung) only became well-known
    in the German-speaking countries, and later in the U.S.,
    although, speaking to Frenchmen, I noticed that Freud is
    still immensely popular in France, esp. among French Jews.
    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent "hermeneutics of suspicion."

    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent “hermeneutics of suspicion.”

    Which makes about as much sense as an “aesthetics of ugliness” or a “biology of igneous rocks.”

    The very name bespeaks an utter misapprehension of the practice in question. Hermeneutics is about understanding, implying at least a modicum of humility in approaching the text. Those four never stood under anything in their lives.

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    • LOL: SPMoore8
    • Replies: @Anon 2
    I agree with your criticism but the term
    "hermeneutics of suspicion," invented by
    the philosopher Paul Ricoeur, is widely used
    in philosophy and literary criticism. I claim
    no credit as the inventor of the phrase
    , @Dieter Kief
    huch - aesthetics is abot the understanding of apprehensions - no matter what k i n d of apprehendions, please - be they ugly or beautiful, horrific or - you name it.

    If you don't trust me - have a look at Hans-Georg Gadamer's "Truth and Method" or the famous volume of the "Poetics & Hermeneutic" - Group at Konstanz, titeld: "Die Nicht Mehr Schönen Künste" (rough traanslation: Art isn't necessarily beautiful anymore - cf. de Sade, Bataille, Rimbaud (of course Rimbaud) - and lots of others, lots of others - The "Orestie" if you will - or the "Illiad" - and Freud too, because he insisted that things, which were usually kept under the rug should surface and: Be spoken about. No matter, what scandal it might have aroused. And he did cause scandals! Freud made people feel uneasy.

    , @Olorin
    Hermeneutics has nothing to do with "understanding" except in particularized applications of the term (like Christian hermeneutics dealing with Bible study, meaning textual exegesis dealing with a particular narrative).

    The word itself is ηερμενευτικοσ/hermeneutikos , and it means simply to interpret or utter. From Hermes, the deity of utterance, language, and not surprisingly, transformation and even tricks.

    It derives from ηερμενευειν/hermeneuein , to translate a language.

    Interpretation is a very different line of work than claiming understanding.

    Our host's topic--Freud, Marx, and Einstein--covers 2/3s of Ricoeur's subject as noted by Anon 2. Ricoeur was using the term in its more complex or broad sense in philosophy. Not as a textual method in a particular narrative tradition.

    You might be interested in what Gadamer, and his teacher Heidegger, had to say about hermeneutics. It's practically the opposite of "understanding," in a very Zen way.

  111. MarcB says:

    Back in the 1970′s, Freudian psychoanalysis was sold as necessary for people as an oil change was for your car. Almost every film, TV series or talk show of the era had it part of the story line or interview. They were selling the Goy on the idea that visiting an analyst wasn’t just good maintenance for the mind, but also as a status marker of being cosmopolitan.

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  112. benjaminl says:
    @syonredux

    Above is Google’s nGram of books mentioning three Jewish intellectual heroes through 2007 (the last full year of data, I believe). The trajectory of Einstein’s green line makes him looks like the real deal, while Freud (red) and Marx (blue) look like burst bubbles.
     
    Never really understood the Jewish desire to make a "holy trinity" (to borrow a phrase from Matthew Weiner) out of Marx, Freud, and Einstein. For one thing, it's monstrously unfair to Einstein, linking him to a total fraud like Freud......

    Personally, I would have gone for a more respectable trinity: Spinoza, Durkheim, and Einstein.

    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I’m really no expert, but I’m suspicious.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Jeeves liked Spinoza.
    , @syonredux

    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I’m really no expert, but I’m suspicious.
     
    There's no question that some people overrate Spinoza (cf, for example, the work of Jonathan Israel), but Joyce overstates things. Spinoza is a significant thinker.
  113. gcochran says:
    @prosa123
    One big difference between Freud and Einstein is that Freud remained productive for much of his life while Einstein's major discoveries were before he was 30 or so.

    It’s harder when you have to make sense.

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  114. @kaganovitch
    In addition to Nabokov and Conrad, Wittgenstein was a sharp critic of Freudianism . Freudian thought's popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.

    Freudian thought’s popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.

    And yet, one of the greatest anti-Freudians of all time, Jean-Paul Sartre, dominated mid-century French thought.

    One of my favorite anecdotes about Freud and Hollywood is when John Huston wanted to make a biopic about Freud after the Second World War. Now Huston was an old-school man’s man, and when he thought about Freud, he had in mind his being highly impressed during and after the war witnessing the results of using hypnotic therapy to treat returning soldiers who had what we would now call PTSD–Freud had pioneered hypnotic therapy for cocaine addiction early in his career. Someone convinced him that Sartre of all people would be the ideal choice to write the screenplay! Sartre himself was delighted–Hollywood was giving him his big chance to speak to millions and trash Freudianism altogether–he totally rejected even the possibility of there even being a human “unconscious,” for example.

    When Huston received the draft screenplay, he was mortified: a) he had had no idea about the whole Oedipal and scatological business, and b) the running time for Sartre’s treatment would have run five hours. So he sent it back, with commands to a) clean it up and b) shorten it considerably. Sartre being Sartre, he sent Huston a second draft that would have run eight hours. He justified this by saying “On peut faire un film de quatre heures s’il s’agit de Ben Hur, mais le public de Texas ne supporterait pas quatre heures de complexes” (“We can make a film of four hours in the case of BEN HUR, but the Texas public couldn’t stand four hours of complexes.”).

    Long story short: Huston tried to cut the script himself, Sartre balked and took his name of the credits, the film didn’t get made until 1962 (after years of this development hell) and the finished movie hasn’t even been available on DVD until a couple years ago.

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  115. guest says:
    @Langley
    Mouse & Moore,

    In The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages Bloom suggested that Freud was one of the great writers of his era but that he stole his ideas from and felt competition with Shakespeare.

    You can find most of Freud's complexes and concepts in Shakespeare's great characters.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Western_Canon:_The_Books_and_School_of_the_Ages

    Bloom is like the guy with a hammer in his hand. He sees Shakespeare everywhere. He pretends to think Shakespeare literally invented the modern way of thinking. Of course he says Freud stole from Shakespeare. He’d probably say you stole this post from Shakespeare.

    Freud did steal pretty much everything, but I wouldn’t place Shakespeare too high. Obviously, Sophocles (or the phony Sophocles he built up in his mind) was more important to him, and so was the historical Hannibal. His was an ancient-oriented mind, like Shakespeare in a way.

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  116. gcochran says:
    @Jack D

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs.
     
    It's not puzzling if you understand Jews in the Diaspora to be a part of whatever culture they live in. The Nazis kept talking about "German physics" as distinct from "Jewish physics" but they were nuts. There was no "independent" Jewish development of ANYTHING because they did not exist as an independent and isolated people. Even if you step inside the ghetto of Venice, the buildings look no different than those outside the ghetto wall. In the Diaspora, there was no purely "Jewish" art or architecture or cuisine or anything outside of the purely religious - things might have been adapted to fit religious requirements (no butter in the meat sauce) but fundamentally, Arab Jews ate Arab food and produced Arab style art, Polish Jews ate Polish food and lived in Polish style houses and even synagogues, etc. If you try to figure out whether you are in the former Jewish quarter of any European city, you have to rely on the most subtle cues - there is very little to physically distinguish them.

    The Christian diaspora was hostile to Jews pursuing secular education (unless they converted or no longer lived as Jews), so it's not surprising there were not a lot of Jewish scientists until after Napoleon granted civil rights to the Jews. There were also few if any blacks in American professional sports prior to WWII , "in light of their later achievements" - was this due to the blacks themselves or the society that they lived in?


    Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)
     
    I think the idea of the "amateur" was really a British gentleman thing and didn't exist in a lot of places. Anyway, inside the Jewish community, musing on science would get you no praise. If you were a man of means with intellectual pretensions, the expectation was that you would study the Talmud. The Talmud does have a certain amount of science and math but it is pretty much locked in at the Babylonian era. But Jews were not completely isolated from Western developments even within their own pre-Enlightenment ghettos:

    http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/10478-mathematics#anchor2

    “Polish Jews ate Polish food”

    Especially kaszanka.

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    • Replies: @Jack D
    As I mentioned, the local cuisine always had to be adapted to comply with the dietary laws. But as it happens, Polish Jews did eat "kishka" which is kaszanka adapted for kosher requirements.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kishka_(food)

    The Polish and Jewish versions of other dishes (e.g. pierogi made with potatoes and cheese) are identical. The best "Jewish rye bread" I ever had was in Krakow (even though there are almost no Jews left there). Katz's Deli would weep at how good that rye bread was. Because of the many meatless days of the Church calendar, Polish cuisine already had a large repertoire of non-pork recipes that could be used without much alteration. Nor do you have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that you can substitute poultry fat for pork fat, beef for pork, etc.
  117. Anon 2 says:

    It’s fair to say that Freudianism has attracted
    little or no interest east of Berlin. Personality
    theory is peculiar in that there is no universally
    accepted model, and instead there are many schools
    of thought centered around brilliant individuals.
    Poland, for example, produced a psychiatrist
    named Kazimierz (Casimir) Dabrowski (1902-
    1980) whose ideas continue to attract devoted
    disciples both in Europe and in the U.S. For a
    good introduction to his ideas , I recommend a
    book entitled “Personality Shaping through Positive
    Disintegration.” The basic idea is that those
    individuals who have a high developmental
    potential are bound to experience many crises
    before they reach their highest level of personality
    integration. Dabrowski’s ideas seem to be particularly
    influential among educators who work with fragile
    but gifted children

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  118. Abe says: • Website
    @anony-mouse
    Well Steve:

    Do you ever use the term 'Freudian slip'?

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Do you ever refer to someone's subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    You Freudian, you.

    Fortunately no one else does, so I guess you're right about his ideas being dead.

    Do you ever use the term ‘Freudian slip’?

    Yes, and every time it was simply in unthinking mimicry of something I had just heard on TV or seen in print, and not because I 100% believed I had just uncovered a case of it. In fact, well before I shed my naivete about Freudian theory I felt I was deploying this concept disingenuously and simply finding a lazy way to make myself sound witty.

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Pseudo-scientific concept describing an aspect of human personality which philosophers and writers have gone on about for literally 1000′s of years.

    Do you ever refer to someone’s subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    Inferiority complex is, again, like Freudian slip, a concept I may have thrown out once or twice in real-life, but always with some lingering amount of uncertainty that my judgement was too pat. Again, would never had done it without years of acculturation to the concept through seeing supposedly smart, talented people (Woody Allen, the THE NEW YORKER writer du jour) abase themselves before the concept. It’s like how “Islamophobia” is now a thing, and you have to have balls almost the size of Trump’s not to let it infect your mental processes even to a tiny extent.

    Subconscious, however (and all that was supposedly going on inside it) was so repugnant and alien to what I perceived to be my own true self- even when I was being brutally honest about it- that it forever inoculated me from the disease of Freudianism, though I have to admit I was quite happy when experts and “scientists” in the mid-90′s came out in rejecting it too, letting me know I was wasn’t some crazy crank for being an anti-Freud holdout.

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  119. SPMoore8 says:
    @syonredux

    I don’t know enough about Freud to say everything he did was wrong. My impression is this: as a clinical psychiatrist and scientist of the mind, he was a charlatan and his work amounted to pathological science. As an observer of human nature and cultural historian, he might have been on to a few things.
     
    General rule about Freud: When he was original, he was wrong. When he was right, he wasn't original.

    I note that both you and Intelligent Dasein have both used this formulation, that the x is not y, and the y is not x, which is famously attributed to Samuel Johnson: “I find much in this that is good, and much that is new; but that which is good is not new, and that which is new is not good.”

    Not surprisingly, that quote may be apocryphal and there is actually even an article devoted to it:

    http://quoteinvestigator.com/2013/06/17/good-original/

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  120. guest says:
    @prosa123
    One big difference between Freud and Einstein is that Freud remained productive for much of his life while Einstein's major discoveries were before he was 30 or so.

    All major scientists and mathematicians have their great discoveries in early adulthood, 25 or so being the primetime. That’s the way breakthrough thinking goes, like athletics and soldiering, only moreso. Later on, they’re too tired or dull or set in their ways.

    Freud, who wasn’t a scientist but a belletrist, could, like novelists, playwrights, and poets, draw on experience to craft richer literature.

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  121. benjaminl says:

    Just to extend this…

    Most of the ’68er “post-structuralists” whose legacy has such a baleful influence on US academia took Freud for granted, and then made it somehow even worse.

    Just read the first paragraph of any of these, and picture generations of American grad students trying to imitate them as models.

    Derrida, “Freud and the Scene of Writing” – 646 citations on Google Scholar

    https://www.jstor.org/stable/2929625

    Althusser, “On Marx and Freud” – 58 citations

    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/08935699108657950?journalCode=rrmx20

    Deleuze and Guattari, Anti-Oedipus: On Capitalism and Schizophrenia – 8946 citations

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Oedipus

    Then, apparently, the next generation of French intellectuals broke free of this stuff, even as it was ruining American academia:

    https://www.amazon.com/French-Philosophy-Sixties-Antihumanism-Adventure/dp/0870236954

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal_Bruckner

    http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-arts-and-culture/books/193400/my-father-the-anti-semite

    Pascal Bruckner is absolutely ruthless on multiculturalism and white guilt.

    Back in the US, I will always have some respect for the New York Review of Books (in spite of everything) for publishing Frederick Crews demolishing Freud during the 1980s and 1990s (as cited by syonredux above)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Crews

    Even though the NYRB comes from the milieu of the New York Intellectuals, at least in this case, they believed in rational argument and evidence, even if it involved attacking a hero like Freud. It wasn’t all about who-whom yet, apparently.

    I fear that liberals with that sense of fair play and rationality are dying out and being replaced by SJWs, because the most prominent ones I can think of are all over 50 or older. Nat Hentoff, Alan Sokal, Christina Hoff Sommers, Harvey Silverglate, Mickey Kaus, Jonathan Haidt…

    PS – you can download journal articles via sci-hub even if you’re not at a university…

    https://telegram.me/scihubbot

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    I try to skim each issue of the New York Review of Books. The contributors are pretty elderly, but they are, on the good side, mature. I can't score a lot of easy points off them the way I can score off the more clickbaity left of center website like The Atlantic.
  122. Anon 2 says:
    @prosa123
    One big difference between Freud and Einstein is that Freud remained productive for much of his life while Einstein's major discoveries were before he was 30 or so.

    Actually, Einstein’s general theory of relativity,
    which was his greatest contribution, was published
    in 1915, when he was 36. The ideas and the equations
    of the special theory of relativity had many fathers,
    incl. Lorentz, Poincaré, and Einstein

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon 2
    There is a saying, don't trust a physicist over 40,
    so when Einstein published his general theory of
    relativity at 36 he was still trustworthy.
  123. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Mr. Anon
    "Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn’t totally out there."

    I don't see either Dr. Strangelove or Full Metal Jacket as being left-wing, neither overtly or even covertly. The most left-wing movie Kubrick ever made was Spartacus, which was not really "his" movie - he was just hired on to be the director - and he mostly disowned it.

    I thought Spartacus was a pretty good movie, even though Kirk Douglas did a lousy job of looking like he was suffering on that cross.

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  124. @Stogumber
    Jewish overrating of Marx, Freud and Einstein seems to stem from a constructionist theory of science.
    That is, the three men were not seen so much as observers and concluders (with predecessors and successors in a continous stream of observation and conclusion), but as genial inventors.
    Now Marx lived too early to reflect the Jewish hype (which was a matter mostly for the Jewish kids around 1900-1950 at search for models of academic triumph). And Einstein was too self-critical to fall for the Jewish hype without reservations (he was conscious that his theoretical inventions, as all, might be falsified by later observations) - even if he deliberately used his reputation for lecturing about things he didn't know more about than Joe the Plumber. Freud was the one who indistinctly fell for Jewish public acclamations.
    Freud, more than Marx, is responsible for the dark sides of Cultural Marxism.

    Is Einstein really overrated? I’m no expert, but it seem to me that, unlike the other two, his ideas stand up pretty well against what we can observe in the real world.

    The only thing Freud was right about was Shakespeare.

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  125. Anon 2 says:
    @Desiderius

    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent “hermeneutics of suspicion.”
     
    Which makes about as much sense as an "aesthetics of ugliness" or a "biology of igneous rocks."

    The very name bespeaks an utter misapprehension of the practice in question. Hermeneutics is about understanding, implying at least a modicum of humility in approaching the text. Those four never stood under anything in their lives.

    I agree with your criticism but the term
    “hermeneutics of suspicion,” invented by
    the philosopher Paul Ricoeur, is widely used
    in philosophy and literary criticism. I claim
    no credit as the inventor of the phrase

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  126. Can analysis be worthwhile?
    Is the theater really dead?

    -Simon and Garfunkle, The Dangling Conversation

    Funny, I thought psychoanalysis was a form of theater!

    That agrees with my impression that Freudianism was largely for more conservative liberal Jews…

    In other words, neoconservatives. I used to think the Southerners who voted for Barry Goldwater were the first neocons, but this makes me wonder if the Freudians were.

    Lets not forget, too, the effect of the the later generations of Freuds, daughter Anna, grandson Lucian, and, most notably, double nephew Edward Bernays, who just about invented public relations, and probably had more real influence in society than his uncle did.

    Bernays worked for Wilson’s Committee on Public Information during the Great War. It was advised by, among others, and of all people, Secretary of State Robert Lansing, the great-grandnephew of arch-Antifederalist John Lansing.

    Its leader, George Creel, mansplained, “We did not call it propaganda, for that word, in German hands, had come to be associated with deceit and corruption.”

    To paraphrase Huey Long, when propaganda comes to America, they’ll call it anti-propaganda.

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    • Replies: @Jake
    What? Southerners who voted for Goldwater the first neocons?

    Southerners who voted for Goldwater were doing so not because they were harbingers of neocon notions of the US military spreading US commercial democracy worldwide. They voted Goldwater because they saw that the Democrats had been taken over by Jewish ideas, such as Freudianism, and they were hoping to save traditional American decency in at least their states.

    If you wish to find white Gentile American precursors of neocons ideas look to Abraham Lincoln and his Republican Party. They believed in a sacred American democracy that must be preserved intact at all costs.

    It is no mistake that actual neocon Jews invariably hate white southern culture and history, that neocon Jews despise white southerners as much as Hillary Clinton hates white southerns, while loving Lincoln.
    , @syonredux

    Lets not forget, too, the effect of the the later generations of Freuds, daughter Anna, grandson Lucian, and, most notably, double nephew Edward Bernays, who just about invented public relations, and probably had more real influence in society than his uncle did.
     
    Don't forget Ivy Lee:

    Ivy Ledbetter Lee (July 16, 1877 – November 9, 1934) was an American publicity expert and a founder of modern public relations. (The term Public Relations is to be found for the first time in the preface of the 1897 Yearbook of Railway Literature). He is best known for his public relations work with the Rockefeller family. His first major client was the Pennsylvania Railroad, followed by numerous major railroads such as the New York Central, the Baltimore and Ohio, and the Harriman lines such as the Union Pacific. He established the Association of Railroad Executives, which included providing public relations services to the industry. Lee advised major industrial corporations, including steel, automobile, tobacco, meatpacking, and rubber, as well as public utilities, banks, and even foreign governments. Lee pioneered the use of internal magazines to maintain employee morale, as well as management newsletters, stockholder reports, and news releases to the media. He did a great deal of pro bono work, and during World War I, he became the publicity director for the American Red Cross.
     

    Ivy Lee was born near Cedartown, Georgia, the son of a Methodist minister, James Wideman Lee, who founded an important Atlanta family. He studied at Emory College and then graduated from Princeton. He worked as a newspaper reporter and stringer. He was a journalist at the New York American, the New York Times, and the New York World. He got his first job in 1903 as a publicity manager for the Citizens' Union. He authored the book The Best Administration New York City Ever Had. He later took a job with the Democratic National Committee. Lee married Cornelia Bartlett Bigalow in 1901. They had three children: Alice Lee in 1902, James Wideman Lee II in 1906, and Ivy Lee, Jr. in 1909.[2]
    Together with George Parker, he established the nation's third public relations firm, Parker and Lee, in 1905. The new agency boasted of "Accuracy, Authenticity, and Interest." It made this partnership after working together in the Democratic Party headquarters handling publicity for Judge Alton Parker's unsuccessful presidential race against Theodore Roosevelt in 1904.
    The Parker and Lee firm lasted less than four years, but the junior partner, Lee, was to become one of the most influential pioneers in public relations.
    He evolved his philosophy in 1906 into the Declaration of Principles, the first articulation of the concept that public relations practitioners have a public responsibility that extends beyond obligations to the client. In the same year, after the 1906 Atlantic City train wreck, Lee issued what is often considered to be the first press release, convincing the company to openly disclose information to journalists, before they could hear information from elsewhere.[3]
    When Lee was hired full-time by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1912, he was considered to be the first public relations person placed in an executive-level position. In fact, his archives reveal that he drafted one of the first job descriptions of a VP-level corporate public relations position.
    In 1919, he founded a public relations counseling office, Ivy Lee & Associates.
    During World War I, Lee served as a publicity director, and later as Assistant to the Chairman of the American Red Cross.[2]
    Through his sister Laura, Lee was an uncle to novelist William S. Burroughs.

     

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_Lee
  127. Anon 2 says:
    @Anon 2
    Actually, Einstein's general theory of relativity,
    which was his greatest contribution, was published
    in 1915, when he was 36. The ideas and the equations
    of the special theory of relativity had many fathers,
    incl. Lorentz, Poincaré, and Einstein

    There is a saying, don’t trust a physicist over 40,
    so when Einstein published his general theory of
    relativity at 36 he was still trustworthy.

    Read More
  128. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer
    @Dave Pinsen
    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud, one that likely contains more truth than Barbara Kay's pretentious essay (e.g., her mother as an "analyst manqué" [sic]).

    Auden includes this line,

    "if often he was wrong and, at times, absurd"

    but still sees honor in Freud and his enterprise.

    I don't know how common Freudianism is in psychotherapy today, but contra Kay, there's plenty of talk therapy done now by social workers and psychologists (yes, in conjunction with drugs), and one reason many psychiatrists have moved away from talk therapy in general is because they can make more money delegating that to non-MDs and billing for 15 minute "med checks" instead.

    We’ve had many touch points with therapy over the years and can conclude, with sufficient experience, that it is a waste of time. Indeed, one therapist related the theory … and we could observe the practice.

    “How is this suppose to work for our daughter … you know, 45 minutes a week for $250?

    “You see, the objective is for the patient to form a close relation with the therapist. That will help her overcome relationship issues?”

    “We’re sorry, but we’re mystified. How can anyone form a close relationship with anyone with only 45 minutes of contact time a week? In a week, we spend more time with the waitress over lunch at the pizza parlor than we spend with you.”

    BTW: The therapist, like so many others we’ve known, drove a Mercedes.

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  129. As far as I can tell, the collapse of Freud’s reputation has not led to much general Jewish doubts about Jewish intellectual influence.

    Frequently, even permanently, in error; never in doubt.

    All of the members of Ayn Rand’s inner circle were Jewish; in fact, almost all of them were related to one another by blood or marriage. Alan Greenspan, a Rand favorite who was not related to her, is yet another example of a Jewish genius whose once-soaring reputation has crashed down to earth.

    So Marx, Freud, and Greenspan have been discredited … now all we need to do is prove that Einstein stole his ideas from some unsuspecting goyishe schmuck.

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  130. @middle aged vet.
    Insightful post, Steve. I think Freud was a pretty funny guy, although he took himself much too seriously. Sort of like an alternate universe where Chris Farley seriously pretended to be just like David Spade. His guardian angel was very over-worked. Nabokov was very critical of Freud, but that does not mean all that much to any one who is not a devoted Nabokov fan: Nabokov was one of those guys, like Jowett ("My name is Jowett, it is not knowledge if I don't know-it") who dreamed of a world where they could spend the rest of their life making fun of people who did not agree that what they had chosen to study in college (for Nabokov, that would be French/English/Russian literature of approximately 1820-1880) was the peak of human civilization. Well, Nabokov took himself too seriously too. Almost none of us like people who remind us too much of ourselves, and while the laughs in Nabokov outnumber the laughs in Freud by about ten to one, the two Continental gentlemen are not all that different from each other, so of course there would be mutual dislike (well it would have been mutual if Freud had ever heard of Nabokov). Nabokov and Freud were both way too liberal for me, by the way: ten minutes a day with Samuel Johnson or, if they were feeling lazy, Judeo-Christian thinkers like Chesterton or Maimonides, would have done great wonders for both of them. Well, summer goes by quickly for all of us, no matter how gifted.

    The most insightful critique of Freudian theories that I ever read was an essay by the renowned management consultant, Peter Drucker. Drucker was born into and grew up in the same Viennese, upper-class, Jewish community as Freud. His parents knew Freud and many of his patients. Drucker was acquainted with the families involved in Freud’s most famous published case studies. He points out that it is obvious even from Freud’s descriptions that all his patients were suffering from severe anxieties relating to financial uncertainty and extremely unstable social status. Dora was the young daughter of a family who expected her to keep the family afloat by marrying a much older man whom she despised. Wolf man was the son of an aristocratic Russian family facing severe financial and political problems. Little Hans’s family was on the fringes of upper class Viennese society. And so on. Drucker argued that it was insecurities and stresses like these and not sexual problems that caused the neuroses of most patients. Problems like these were endemic among the upper class Viennese Jews whom Freud treated and whose high status was very precarious in fin de siecle and post WW I Austria.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    So Jane Austen would have been a better guide to understanding Freud's patients' problems?
    , @middle aged vet.
    Interesting and probably correct take. By the way, Drucker's parents were also friends of Joseph Schumpeter, the favorite economist in Japan in the 1980s, if I remember correctly. He did not lack self-assurance - once stated that his ambition had been to be the best horseman, the best economist, and the best lover in Vienna; and that he was happy with his lot in life, having succeeded in 2 out of 3. Another guy, I guess, who should have read a little more of Samuel Johnson ...
  131. Jake says:
    @Reg Cæsar
    Can analysis be worthwhile?
    Is the theater really dead?


    -Simon and Garfunkle, The Dangling Conversation

    Funny, I thought psychoanalysis was a form of theater!


    That agrees with my impression that Freudianism was largely for more conservative liberal Jews...
     
    In other words, neoconservatives. I used to think the Southerners who voted for Barry Goldwater were the first neocons, but this makes me wonder if the Freudians were.

    Lets not forget, too, the effect of the the later generations of Freuds, daughter Anna, grandson Lucian, and, most notably, double nephew Edward Bernays, who just about invented public relations, and probably had more real influence in society than his uncle did.

    Bernays worked for Wilson's Committee on Public Information during the Great War. It was advised by, among others, and of all people, Secretary of State Robert Lansing, the great-grandnephew of arch-Antifederalist John Lansing.

    Its leader, George Creel, mansplained, "We did not call it propaganda, for that word, in German hands, had come to be associated with deceit and corruption."

    To paraphrase Huey Long, when propaganda comes to America, they'll call it anti-propaganda.

    What? Southerners who voted for Goldwater the first neocons?

    Southerners who voted for Goldwater were doing so not because they were harbingers of neocon notions of the US military spreading US commercial democracy worldwide. They voted Goldwater because they saw that the Democrats had been taken over by Jewish ideas, such as Freudianism, and they were hoping to save traditional American decency in at least their states.

    If you wish to find white Gentile American precursors of neocons ideas look to Abraham Lincoln and his Republican Party. They believed in a sacred American democracy that must be preserved intact at all costs.

    It is no mistake that actual neocon Jews invariably hate white southern culture and history, that neocon Jews despise white southerners as much as Hillary Clinton hates white southerns, while loving Lincoln.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    The first neoconservatives using that name were FDR fans who were nonetheless horrified by social trends the welfare state engendered. Just how does that differ from Goldwater and Wallace voters? Their best counties were FDR's a generation earlier.

    They believed in a sacred American democracy that must be preserved intact at all costs.
     
    Lincoln thought cotton paddies with African majorities were worth fighting to keep. That's not only wrong, it's insane. Clinically insane.
  132. Jack D says:
    @gcochran
    "Polish Jews ate Polish food"


    Especially kaszanka.

    As I mentioned, the local cuisine always had to be adapted to comply with the dietary laws. But as it happens, Polish Jews did eat “kishka” which is kaszanka adapted for kosher requirements.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kishka_(food)

    The Polish and Jewish versions of other dishes (e.g. pierogi made with potatoes and cheese) are identical. The best “Jewish rye bread” I ever had was in Krakow (even though there are almost no Jews left there). Katz’s Deli would weep at how good that rye bread was. Because of the many meatless days of the Church calendar, Polish cuisine already had a large repertoire of non-pork recipes that could be used without much alteration. Nor do you have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that you can substitute poultry fat for pork fat, beef for pork, etc.

    Read More
    • Replies: @utu
    I always wondered when potato based latkes became traditional Hanukkah food. What were they made before potatoes were grown in Poland? Once I heard that also topinambour (Jerusalem artichokes) were used which made it to Central Europe from the New World before potatoes but then abandoned and forgotten.

    The best “Jewish rye bread” .
    The best rye though not necessarily Jewish (no caraway seeds) in the Western Hemisphere is from Toronto's Dimpflmeier bakery http://www.dimpflmeierbakery.com/

    Who Stole The Kishka- Frankie Yankovic
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCFBef0NhDY
  133. Freud was probably right that the subconscious and the sex-drive play an important role in mental disorders, but his explanations and methodology were based on a very primitive understanding of neuro-science. Cognitive therapy and chemical therapy have hit a ceiling terms of effectiveness and aren’t very effective at dealing with chronic, moderate conditions, while the subconscious has become a hot topic again through evolutionary psychology and the rising popularity of brain-body therapies like yoga.

    The popular new idea now is that people with chronic, moderate mental health problems have dysregulated nervous systems, primarily because they don’t experience an appropriate discharge of nervous tension following moderately stressful events.

    It’s interesting that introverts have much higher rates of depression that extroverts, despite having similar levels of anxiety and introverts having more self-awareness. Hence extroverts probably have a superior way of discharging nervous stress. Similarly, the higher rate of depression in women may be related to women’s evolutionary tendency to freeze in reaction to danger, rather than run or fight like males.

    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    Quite a lot of Freud's importance relies on the answer to the question: did he discover anything, or did he just put down on paper what everyone already knew (in an unscientific and unrealistic form)? I've read many examples of Freud encountering (pre-Freudian) doctors who hinted or outright told him, almost as an afterthought, how this or that symptom was caused by some unconscious sexual something. His reaction would always be along the lines of, "Well, why don't they say so!"

    That's Freud in a nutshell, to me: the guy who exposed the dirty secrets of psychiatry to polite society. More than that, the guy who made it acceptable in polite society to talk about penises and what-not, because science.

  134. melendwyr says: • Website

    Freud “didn’t cause much harm”? Are you kidding?

    For the sake of argument, let’s just consider issues of time and money: people went to therapists thinking they were something other than shamans, and spent a lot of time and money receiving treatments which (at best) did nothing in particular and at worst… well, for the sake of argument, let’s say they did nothing.

    That’s a lot of wasted time, and a lot of wasted money. Those are pretty serious harms in themselves, even to upper-middle-class and rich people, given the amounts we’re talking about.

    Then start to factor in direct harms done to people by physicians and therapists with crazy, Freudian ideas…

    Read More
    • Replies: @Jack D
    Don't underestimate the placebo effect, or the value of confession. Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest? Of course "talk therapy" is not going to cure schizophrenia or other serious mental ailments, but most people being analyzed were not mentally ill to begin with and "therapy" made them feel better or at least gave them someone that they could talk to honestly and confidentially.
  135. @Desiderius

    In American academia Freud (and Jung) have found a place
    in literary criticism where he, along with Nietzsche and Marx,
    represent “hermeneutics of suspicion.”
     
    Which makes about as much sense as an "aesthetics of ugliness" or a "biology of igneous rocks."

    The very name bespeaks an utter misapprehension of the practice in question. Hermeneutics is about understanding, implying at least a modicum of humility in approaching the text. Those four never stood under anything in their lives.

    huch – aesthetics is abot the understanding of apprehensions – no matter what k i n d of apprehendions, please – be they ugly or beautiful, horrific or – you name it.

    If you don’t trust me – have a look at Hans-Georg Gadamer’s “Truth and Method” or the famous volume of the “Poetics & Hermeneutic” – Group at Konstanz, titeld: “Die Nicht Mehr Schönen Künste” (rough traanslation: Art isn’t necessarily beautiful anymore – cf. de Sade, Bataille, Rimbaud (of course Rimbaud) – and lots of others, lots of others – The “Orestie” if you will – or the “Illiad” – and Freud too, because he insisted that things, which were usually kept under the rug should surface and: Be spoken about. No matter, what scandal it might have aroused. And he did cause scandals! Freud made people feel uneasy.

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  136. “…Marx ( his ideas can be useful conceptual tools, just as Malthus’s can, without requiring complete submission to either Marx’s or Malthus’s model of how the world works).
    I must disagree with you on this point, Mr Steve. Very little of use can be be retained from the Marxist shipwreck. I suspect those things that can be, Marx borrowed from Hegel, Adam Smith or other sources, except many people no longer recognise that they were borrowed.
    Thank you for purveying this article. It is a remarkably self-aware and honest piece from a Jewish lady who has written a fair number of Zionist diatribes in the past.
    A nice touch is that the piece appeared in The Walrus, which is edited by Mrs Kay’s son Jonathan.
    A nice Jewish boy loved his mother so much that he let her write for his magazine.
    OY VEY ( I hope he paid her )
    PS She even wrote “anti-Semitic” ( Capital S ). Always a good sign.

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  137. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @syonredux

    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud,
     
    Auden was very good, but I don't think that I would place him above Robert Frost, Donne, Tennyson, Milton, .....

    I would.

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  138. Jack D says:
    @melendwyr
    Freud "didn't cause much harm"? Are you kidding?

    For the sake of argument, let's just consider issues of time and money: people went to therapists thinking they were something other than shamans, and spent a lot of time and money receiving treatments which (at best) did nothing in particular and at worst... well, for the sake of argument, let's say they did nothing.

    That's a lot of wasted time, and a lot of wasted money. Those are pretty serious harms in themselves, even to upper-middle-class and rich people, given the amounts we're talking about.

    Then start to factor in direct harms done to people by physicians and therapists with crazy, Freudian ideas...

    Don’t underestimate the placebo effect, or the value of confession. Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest? Of course “talk therapy” is not going to cure schizophrenia or other serious mental ailments, but most people being analyzed were not mentally ill to begin with and “therapy” made them feel better or at least gave them someone that they could talk to honestly and confidentially.

    Read More
    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @melendwyr
    I don't underestimate the value of talking to someone. In fact, studies of various types of psychotherapy show that most of them have no more effectiveness than merely talking to someone.

    The complicated theories? Don't help one bit. In terms of benefits, they don't matter at all. In terms of costs, though...
    , @guest
    You don't have to pay priests. (Alhough, they expect something come collection time. But that's for all their services, not specifically confession.)

    People go to psychiatrists because they imagine they are a sort of expert. If you get as much out of it as you would unburdening your soul to any random person who wouldn't blab all over town or use it against you, you wasted your money.

    Which is to say nothing of all the souls that were burdened by the process. I wonder how many people were driven neurotic (or more neurotic) by psychoanalysis. We'll never know, but I guess almost all of them.

    , @Desiderius

    Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest?
     
    It is, but the talking is better than nothing, if done in moderation. The priest has various other killer apps that go along with it (absolution, redemption, sanctification), but the talking is the first step.

    A lot of my pastoral care consisted of listening with authentic interest to the (often elderly) lonely as they talked about their lives. They were of the opinion that it was helpful to them. It was rarely in the context of confession.
  139. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @anony-mouse
    Well Steve:

    Do you ever use the term 'Freudian slip'?

    Do you ever refer to someone having a big ego?

    Do you ever refer to someone's subconscious?

    Do you ever say that someone has an inferiority complex?

    You Freudian, you.

    Fortunately no one else does, so I guess you're right about his ideas being dead.

    IIRC, the term “subconscious” wasn’t used by Freud. He referred to the “unconscious”.

    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    Since "unconscious" (Mr. I-Don't-Know) was an unscientific and deliberately mysterious term, what's the difference? The greatest intellectual contest I can imagine would be to reward the first person who can demonstrate a practical difference between unconscious and subconscious.
  140. @Langley
    Psychoanalysis is a religion.

    Freud rejected the idea of scientific proof of his ideas.

    He stated that you had to go through psychoanalysis to understand its validity.

    Identical to a religious conversion experience.

    Please read Sigmund Freud and the Jewish mystical tradition:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Sigment+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical+&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=Sigmund+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical

    OR

    Moses and Monotheism:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Sigment+freud+and+the+jewish+mystical+&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=moses+and+monotheism

    eee – what do you want to say – that the religious roots of Freud’s thoughts make them strong, or that they make them weak?

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  141. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @peterike
    I was surprised that Ms. Kay hit the nail on the head: Jews used psychoanalysis as a form of status signalling (it also showed you had money to burn). In the same way, Jews of the 50s-70s generation loved, loved, loved having an illness to discuss. Illness one-upmanship was a standard part of any conversation that had one or more Jews involved.

    But the smarter and more hostile Jewish intellectuals also used Freud as a weapon to dismantle Gentile societies, and in this they were exceptionally successful. Sure, the use of "Freud" as a term has declined, because he's no longer needed as a faux-authority figure. We are well beyond that now, but all the gender-as-a-social-construct, homo-philia, pornophilia, race mixing propaganda, and so on, it all stems from Freud and the Jewish compulsion to be part and parcel of every decadence movement in society.

    Marx was similarly weaponized, of course, in a much blunter way by the Russian (((Bolsheviks))). The great, bloody revolution was never something they managed in America or Western Europe, but they managed a revolution just the same.

    In the same way, Jews of the 50s-70s generation loved, loved, loved having an illness to discuss. Illness one-upmanship was a standard part of any conversation that had one or more Jews involved.

    I don’t think that’s limited to Jews, or that generation. From Auden’s poem on Freud:

    he closed his eyes upon that last picture, common to us all,
    of problems like relatives gathered
    puzzled and jealous about our dying.

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  142. @Anon
    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

    Hoppla – and all of them refer to hehem – Sigmund Freud – explicitly and implicitly! – (As did the Beatles.
    And none of them gives L. Ron Hubbard any credit.

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  143. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Anonymous
    Kubrick is not my type of filmmaker at all (what I call art cinema is mainly an Asian movement: Russia, Japan) but he was a really great cinema director, he's definitely in nearly anyone's serious 20th century top 20 (and in many serious cinema lovers' top 10) (and he is a giant by Hollywood standards. Scorsese David Lynch and Cimino being two of the few others)

    Kafka is possibly the best writer of the 20th century (for me he is), surely in anyone's top 5.

    Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka -- although in good faith ;)

    “Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka — although in good faith”

    Rock Music became a genuine art form and a very powerful & influential one in the 60s mainly due to Dylan. And his body of work is truly astounding, especially from BRINGING IT ALL BACK HOME to BLOOD ON THE TRACKS.

    Also, it’s the tension between modes of rebellion and reverence that makes Dylan a genuine torch-bearer of the Jewish tradition. The Bible is a very holy book, but read between the lines, and it’s like a cosmic joke book.

    Christians, or at least Christian gentiles, took a straight reverential attitude toward God, Mary, and Jesus. This is one reason I find much of Christian art a bit too much, with sanctimony slathered all over it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XSvsFgvWr0

    There’s a sense in Jewish culture that the Book and tradition is one big straight-faced joke. And Dylan’s career captured this. He was a joker or jokerman, the title of his song about Jesus. But if some Jews became utterly cynical and nasty in secular mode, Dylan felt tug and pull between the irreverent and reverent. And that’s what makes him fascinating.

    And there’s Spielberg. Okay, many don’t take him seriously as an artist, but he’s certainly more than a mere entertainer like Michael Bay. He’s more than a very talented entertainer. In his own way, he fashioned a pop faith for mankind. He created his own fantasy messiah in ET and won over the world.

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  144. Jack D says:
    @Marcus
    Austria was well known as among the most philosemitic places in that area, is there any way a white goyim can not be accused of antisemitism?

    That’s right, Austrian anti-Semitism didn’t even exist until March, 1938 when the Germans brought it in their tanks. Hitler must have caught the bug in Germany too – he sure didn’t learn it back home.

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  145. syonredux says:
    @Reg Cæsar
    Can analysis be worthwhile?
    Is the theater really dead?


    -Simon and Garfunkle, The Dangling Conversation

    Funny, I thought psychoanalysis was a form of theater!


    That agrees with my impression that Freudianism was largely for more conservative liberal Jews...
     
    In other words, neoconservatives. I used to think the Southerners who voted for Barry Goldwater were the first neocons, but this makes me wonder if the Freudians were.

    Lets not forget, too, the effect of the the later generations of Freuds, daughter Anna, grandson Lucian, and, most notably, double nephew Edward Bernays, who just about invented public relations, and probably had more real influence in society than his uncle did.

    Bernays worked for Wilson's Committee on Public Information during the Great War. It was advised by, among others, and of all people, Secretary of State Robert Lansing, the great-grandnephew of arch-Antifederalist John Lansing.

    Its leader, George Creel, mansplained, "We did not call it propaganda, for that word, in German hands, had come to be associated with deceit and corruption."

    To paraphrase Huey Long, when propaganda comes to America, they'll call it anti-propaganda.

    Lets not forget, too, the effect of the the later generations of Freuds, daughter Anna, grandson Lucian, and, most notably, double nephew Edward Bernays, who just about invented public relations, and probably had more real influence in society than his uncle did.

    Don’t forget Ivy Lee:

    Ivy Ledbetter Lee (July 16, 1877 – November 9, 1934) was an American publicity expert and a founder of modern public relations. (The term Public Relations is to be found for the first time in the preface of the 1897 Yearbook of Railway Literature). He is best known for his public relations work with the Rockefeller family. His first major client was the Pennsylvania Railroad, followed by numerous major railroads such as the New York Central, the Baltimore and Ohio, and the Harriman lines such as the Union Pacific. He established the Association of Railroad Executives, which included providing public relations services to the industry. Lee advised major industrial corporations, including steel, automobile, tobacco, meatpacking, and rubber, as well as public utilities, banks, and even foreign governments. Lee pioneered the use of internal magazines to maintain employee morale, as well as management newsletters, stockholder reports, and news releases to the media. He did a great deal of pro bono work, and during World War I, he became the publicity director for the American Red Cross.

    Ivy Lee was born near Cedartown, Georgia, the son of a Methodist minister, James Wideman Lee, who founded an important Atlanta family. He studied at Emory College and then graduated from Princeton. He worked as a newspaper reporter and stringer. He was a journalist at the New York American, the New York Times, and the New York World. He got his first job in 1903 as a publicity manager for the Citizens’ Union. He authored the book The Best Administration New York City Ever Had. He later took a job with the Democratic National Committee. Lee married Cornelia Bartlett Bigalow in 1901. They had three children: Alice Lee in 1902, James Wideman Lee II in 1906, and Ivy Lee, Jr. in 1909.[2]
    Together with George Parker, he established the nation’s third public relations firm, Parker and Lee, in 1905. The new agency boasted of “Accuracy, Authenticity, and Interest.” It made this partnership after working together in the Democratic Party headquarters handling publicity for Judge Alton Parker’s unsuccessful presidential race against Theodore Roosevelt in 1904.
    The Parker and Lee firm lasted less than four years, but the junior partner, Lee, was to become one of the most influential pioneers in public relations.
    He evolved his philosophy in 1906 into the Declaration of Principles, the first articulation of the concept that public relations practitioners have a public responsibility that extends beyond obligations to the client. In the same year, after the 1906 Atlantic City train wreck, Lee issued what is often considered to be the first press release, convincing the company to openly disclose information to journalists, before they could hear information from elsewhere.[3]
    When Lee was hired full-time by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1912, he was considered to be the first public relations person placed in an executive-level position. In fact, his archives reveal that he drafted one of the first job descriptions of a VP-level corporate public relations position.
    In 1919, he founded a public relations counseling office, Ivy Lee & Associates.
    During World War I, Lee served as a publicity director, and later as Assistant to the Chairman of the American Red Cross.[2]
    Through his sister Laura, Lee was an uncle to novelist William S. Burroughs.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_Lee

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  146. melendwyr says: • Website
    @Jack D
    Don't underestimate the placebo effect, or the value of confession. Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest? Of course "talk therapy" is not going to cure schizophrenia or other serious mental ailments, but most people being analyzed were not mentally ill to begin with and "therapy" made them feel better or at least gave them someone that they could talk to honestly and confidentially.

    I don’t underestimate the value of talking to someone. In fact, studies of various types of psychotherapy show that most of them have no more effectiveness than merely talking to someone.

    The complicated theories? Don’t help one bit. In terms of benefits, they don’t matter at all. In terms of costs, though…

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  147. @advancedatheist
    The Jews Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck invented cognitive-behavioral therapy, though apparently out of frustration with the failure of psychoanalysis to help their respective patients.

    Perhaps CBT works better because it has roots in gentile wisdom traditions like Stoicism and Buddhism.

    Freud’s work is a labyrinth – because he thought so many things over and discussed such important themes as civilazation and it’s discontempts – which will last as long as civilization lasts, if you ask me.

    Therefor, there’s millions of ways to understand Freud.

    I’m a little experienced with some of his thoughts and with quite some books of those, who have thought about Freuds thoughts too.

    I think Freud’s most important idea was n o t about penises and vaginas and so on. I think his most important single thought is about the necessity to adapt/accomodate.

    To make this chapter very short: Freud is unthinkable really without his reception of Stoicism (and Goethe’s further development of Stoicism) and without Darwin – he took the insight in the importance to adapt/accomodate from various sources – (as did Darwin).

    Have a look at the intersection of Nietzsche, Darwin, Jesus and Goethe and you come across a lot of Freud’s thoughts.

    For deeper and more beautiful insights – read Rilke and the sparkling and fabulous letters of Lou-Andreas Salomé – to Rilke – – and – – Freud.

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  148. @Jack D

    One of the most puzzling facts about Jewish intellectual history is how completely Jews lacked any independent development of astronomy, physics, or even mathematics. They had, in their own culture, even into 18th or 19th century, less astronomy and mathematics than the Babylonians or even the Aztecs.
     
    It's not puzzling if you understand Jews in the Diaspora to be a part of whatever culture they live in. The Nazis kept talking about "German physics" as distinct from "Jewish physics" but they were nuts. There was no "independent" Jewish development of ANYTHING because they did not exist as an independent and isolated people. Even if you step inside the ghetto of Venice, the buildings look no different than those outside the ghetto wall. In the Diaspora, there was no purely "Jewish" art or architecture or cuisine or anything outside of the purely religious - things might have been adapted to fit religious requirements (no butter in the meat sauce) but fundamentally, Arab Jews ate Arab food and produced Arab style art, Polish Jews ate Polish food and lived in Polish style houses and even synagogues, etc. If you try to figure out whether you are in the former Jewish quarter of any European city, you have to rely on the most subtle cues - there is very little to physically distinguish them.

    The Christian diaspora was hostile to Jews pursuing secular education (unless they converted or no longer lived as Jews), so it's not surprising there were not a lot of Jewish scientists until after Napoleon granted civil rights to the Jews. There were also few if any blacks in American professional sports prior to WWII , "in light of their later achievements" - was this due to the blacks themselves or the society that they lived in?


    Obviously, in the light of their later achievements, they must have enjoyed the capacity for such endeavors, but they must have had relatively little independent inclination to pursue them. (In contrast, think of how many gentile scientists pursued their science even as hobbies.)
     
    I think the idea of the "amateur" was really a British gentleman thing and didn't exist in a lot of places. Anyway, inside the Jewish community, musing on science would get you no praise. If you were a man of means with intellectual pretensions, the expectation was that you would study the Talmud. The Talmud does have a certain amount of science and math but it is pretty much locked in at the Babylonian era. But Jews were not completely isolated from Western developments even within their own pre-Enlightenment ghettos:

    http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/10478-mathematics#anchor2

    I don’t see much of analogy between the situation of Jews before, say, the nineteenth century, and that of blacks before they made their way into professional sports. Blacks just weren’t allowed, so of course they weren’t represented in professional sports until afterwards — there’s nothing to explain there.

    But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?

    There are any number of gentile scientists who lacked any real formal education in math or science and yet, seemingly because they couldn’t stop themselves from pursuing the subjects, in the end achieved great things. Some of these scientists/mathematicians managed to do this despite having to make a living at other things. If you read about the lives of, say, George Green, Michael Farady, Oliver Heaviside, Nathaniel Bowditch, or for that matter Ben Franklin, you get the strong sense that these were men who were determined to learn everything they could about a subject that fascinated them, despite their lack of formal education or independent means. I’m not sure I can think of a Jewish equivalent — though perhaps Spinoza, albeit not a scientist, comes closest.

    And it’s also insufficient, I think, to say that Jews only appreciated Talmudic studies as an avocation. Many of the gentile “amateur” scientists, including those I just mentioned, seemed to be driven to do their science or math at the expense of everything that might naturally bring them honor and appreciation — certainly many of us know STEM people who appear to be so motivated.

    Another thing that strikes me as quite peculiar is how little mathematics Jews seemed to have developed even to do the sort of work for which they were uniquely employed, namely as money lenders. As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what’s going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.

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    • Replies: @whorefinder

    As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what’s going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.
     
    In the Catholic world, the School of Salamanca was the major philosophical reason why interest-based lending became acceptable. Once that loosening began, the higher mathematics became something to explore in that area for Catholic mathematicians. I'm not quite sure when that rationalization occurred in Protestant countries, though I'd guess sooner.
    , @melendwyr
    Best guess off the top of the head - no motivation to stick out, leave the herd, revolutionize things. Conformity is highly valued. Smart Jews that questioned tradition usually ended up leaving the faith/ethnic association; Spinoza is a good example.

    Making discoveries requires indifference to fitting in. Probably why China isn't all that great at innovation nowadays.
    , @utu
    "But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?"

    Very good question. Was living in pre-emancipation ghettos really so oppressive or so fulfilling?
  149. whorefinder says: • Website

    Freud’s insights are bunk for gentiles, but they are very true for Jews, at least on the surface. I think that’s what made Jews latch onto him so much: he explained so much about their own problems. Projection, penis envy, Oedipal complex—it seemed to explain much about Jewish psychological issues and behavior, and indeed still does today for Jews and the non-Jewish leftists who are at the vanguard. As Vox Day has shown, the vast amount of projection the Left has done during it’s anti-Trump hysteria supports Freud’s theories as they pertain to Jews.

    The problem became when Jews universalized this to everyone without proper documentation. The people who had been all about social science studies proving this theory or that simply assumed it was true without proving it. And of course, as the 20th Century wore on, Jews became increasingly adverse to believing that there were psychological differences between the races and ethnicities.

    Freud’s activities, when combined with Marxism, retarded actual hard science into brain development and chemistry. Why think it was a mere chemical imbalance causing your craziness, when it was clearly your lust for your sister? If everything was a soft science psychological problem, it could be used against you in a Show Trial to show your insanity—no hard proof required.

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  150. @Jeff Burton
    This is spot on. And don't forget the dreams! Dali's dream sequence in Spellbound has to be the apogee of this phenomenon. How many novels/movies/shows turned on the resolution of a "repressed" experience?

    And yes, Freudianism is/was a cult. See "In the Freud Archives" by Janet Malcom.

    It’s likely Freud got the notion of “dream as the expression of a submerged wish” from Shakespeare (Banquo), who got it from Plato via Chalcidius (see C.S. Lewis’s The Discarded Image).

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    • Replies: @guest
    Banquo came to Macbeth in waking life, at least in the more famous scene. That was a hallucination, not a dream. What was the submerged wish regarding Banquo, anyway? Macbeth wanted to fail? That's pretty vague.

    No doubt Freud would be able to twist it into some fantasy no doubt involving castration. But is there any actual substance to this, or is it speculation? And why wouldn't Freud take it from any of the more famous literary dreams?
  151. @Crawfurdmuir
    What Marx and Freud have in common is the belief that "conditions create consciousness." Marx meant this in a political and economic way, but Freud (and also the behaviorists, e.g., Skinner) held it to be true at a more basic level. Whatever peculiarities of action any conscious being, whether a human being or a laboratory rat, may exhibit, they hold are products of its experiences. There is no allowance for human (or rat) nature. Behavior and even thought are entirely malleable by manipulating the conditions surrounding it.

    In the case of Marxism, this principle led to Stalin's embrace of Lysenko and the belief that acquired characteristics could be inherited. How else could "New Soviet Man" - the Bolshevists' equivalent of Hitler's Master Race - come into existence? To admit that there is such a thing as "human nature," that some traits are innate and resistant to change through altered conditions, would have doomed the project from the start.

    Freud's influence on the Frankfurt School was to provide an explanation for the failure of Marxism-Leninism to spread across Europe after the Russian Revolution. According to Frankfurt Scool thinkers such as Adorno and Marcuse, a simple economic change was not enough to bring about the utopia predicted by Marx. Adorno argued that opposition to such social progress was a psychological aberration in The Authoritarian Personality. Moreover, pre-existing social structures, like the "patriarchal family," traditional sexual taboos and inhibitions, and other customary ways of thinking, had to be demolished and rooted out before the "worker's paradise" could be achieved. Marcuse's Eros and Civilization is full of such arguments, derived from Freudian psychology and the late work of Engels, The Origins of the Family, Private Property, and the State.

    Modern feminism, along with gay liberationism and most recently the tranny-bathroom phenomenon all have their roots in this Frankfurt School thinking, and particularly that of Marcuse, though it is probable that not even 10% of the noisy social justice warrior crowd could identify them.

    Interesting – but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
    It’s very interesting, that Rorty as one of the really Frankfurt-leaning American thinkers in his latest book – about US Patriotism! – is attaccing the snowflake state-of-mind of nowadays xxx-rights activists. And Rorty hints at the lower classes – and their basic needs.
    Jürgen Habermas was a close friend of Richard Rorty and gave his book a warm welcome.

    I know, that I make our little discoursive world here maybe even more complicated than it was before – but what the heck!

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    • Replies: @Crawfurdmuir

    Interesting – but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
     
    Emancipation, but from what? Justice, but how defined?

    Marcuse's essay "Repressive Tolerance" (1965) argued that to tolerate certain types of expression was actually repressive to some persons or groups of persons in society. So, for example, suggestions that there might be innate inequalities between male and female, or between the white and negro, serve to repress women and blacks, and therefore tolerating the expression of such claims is itself repressive. The alternative to such "repressive tolerance" was "liberating tolerance."

    Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. As to the scope of this tolerance and intolerance: ... it would extend to the stage of action as well as of discussion and propaganda, of deed as well as of word.
     
    This is the intellectual justification of "political correctness," and a better example of the moral inversion of meaning that Orwell portrayed in 1984 could not be produced. It is seen in action today in the behavior of self-proclaimed anti-fascists whose mode of action is to dress in black clothing and to perpetrate physical mayhem against persons with whom they disagree (just like Mussolini's squadristi or Mosley's "biff boys"). A person called Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, mouthpiece for a "progressive" entity called the Partnership for Civil Justice, said without an apparent trace of historic awareness:

    "Dressing all in black is not illegal,” she adds, addressing charging documents’ description of the group as being “dressed similarly to one another” in mostly black clothing before marching as a “cohesive unit.”
     
    The courageous antifa type that sucker-punched Richard Spencer was, on top of this, wearing a mask. When W.E.B. DuBois wrote that "The kind of thing that men are afraid or ashamed to do openly, and by day, they accomplish secretly, masked, and at night," he was referring to the Ku Klux Klan. His censure could as well apply to the balaclava-wearing vandals of Inauguration Day, but they have carved out an exception for themselves based on their own moral vanity.

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don't know what those words mean any more.
  152. guest says:
    @Jack D
    Don't underestimate the placebo effect, or the value of confession. Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest? Of course "talk therapy" is not going to cure schizophrenia or other serious mental ailments, but most people being analyzed were not mentally ill to begin with and "therapy" made them feel better or at least gave them someone that they could talk to honestly and confidentially.

    You don’t have to pay priests. (Alhough, they expect something come collection time. But that’s for all their services, not specifically confession.)

    People go to psychiatrists because they imagine they are a sort of expert. If you get as much out of it as you would unburdening your soul to any random person who wouldn’t blab all over town or use it against you, you wasted your money.

    Which is to say nothing of all the souls that were burdened by the process. I wonder how many people were driven neurotic (or more neurotic) by psychoanalysis. We’ll never know, but I guess almost all of them.

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    • Replies: @whorefinder
    It's interesting that psychoanalysis arose at the same time a lot of Western intellectuals were making conversions to Catholicism. It was sort of a mini-movement among them. Oscar Wilde and Bosie Douglas are prime examples of this self-conscious conversion.

    Could the two be related? Confession is good for the soul being a sign of the times?

    http://cve.revues.org/528

  153. @ThreeCranes
    As SFG said above, "Freud actually thought repression was necessary for civilization."

    Civilizing a person entails his acquiring the habit of reining in his impulsive urge to gratify his instinctual drive for food or sex and instead, channel his life energy into a culturally established and socially acceptable method of attaining gratification. This begins in infancy with toilet training.

    Most readers on this site agree with this. For example, they condemn black people for their lack of having acquired the above traits as being instances and empirical proof of their "poor impulse control" and deficiency of "future time orientation".

    When a black yoof sees some cigars in a convenience store, he grabs the whole damn box and makes off with it and Lord help any unwitting storeowner who tries to intervene and assert his right to private property. In today's Liberal world, only a foreigner--say a South Asian--would be so ignorant of American mores as to assume that his allegedly inalienable right to property trumps a black yoof's Presidentially-sanctioned right to act on his unfettered impulses. Likewise with the looting.

    And now Big Daddy Trump threatens to discipline the children throwing tantrums and actually put the whole Nation--and them-- back to work. Work??? Make black yoofs work??? But that's so culturally insensitive....slavery, PTSD and all that.

    And now Big Daddy Trump threatens to discipline the children throwing tantrums and actually put the whole Nation–and them– back to work.

    Hey, hey, hey… this is Nation!

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  154. whorefinder says: • Website
    @candid_observer
    I don't see much of analogy between the situation of Jews before, say, the nineteenth century, and that of blacks before they made their way into professional sports. Blacks just weren't allowed, so of course they weren't represented in professional sports until afterwards -- there's nothing to explain there.

    But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?

    There are any number of gentile scientists who lacked any real formal education in math or science and yet, seemingly because they couldn't stop themselves from pursuing the subjects, in the end achieved great things. Some of these scientists/mathematicians managed to do this despite having to make a living at other things. If you read about the lives of, say, George Green, Michael Farady, Oliver Heaviside, Nathaniel Bowditch, or for that matter Ben Franklin, you get the strong sense that these were men who were determined to learn everything they could about a subject that fascinated them, despite their lack of formal education or independent means. I'm not sure I can think of a Jewish equivalent -- though perhaps Spinoza, albeit not a scientist, comes closest.

    And it's also insufficient, I think, to say that Jews only appreciated Talmudic studies as an avocation. Many of the gentile "amateur" scientists, including those I just mentioned, seemed to be driven to do their science or math at the expense of everything that might naturally bring them honor and appreciation -- certainly many of us know STEM people who appear to be so motivated.

    Another thing that strikes me as quite peculiar is how little mathematics Jews seemed to have developed even to do the sort of work for which they were uniquely employed, namely as money lenders. As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what's going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.

    As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what’s going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.

    In the Catholic world, the School of Salamanca was the major philosophical reason why interest-based lending became acceptable. Once that loosening began, the higher mathematics became something to explore in that area for Catholic mathematicians. I’m not quite sure when that rationalization occurred in Protestant countries, though I’d guess sooner.

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  155. guest says:
    @Dave Pinsen
    IIRC, the term "subconscious" wasn't used by Freud. He referred to the "unconscious".

    Since “unconscious” (Mr. I-Don’t-Know) was an unscientific and deliberately mysterious term, what’s the difference? The greatest intellectual contest I can imagine would be to reward the first person who can demonstrate a practical difference between unconscious and subconscious.

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen, @AnotherGuessModel
    Unconscious is when you're knocked out cold and your Subconscious is the mousy, neurotic part of your mind you are aware i.e. conscious of chiding your Inner Goddess for being a depraved slut.
  156. @Jack D
    Don't underestimate the placebo effect, or the value of confession. Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest? Of course "talk therapy" is not going to cure schizophrenia or other serious mental ailments, but most people being analyzed were not mentally ill to begin with and "therapy" made them feel better or at least gave them someone that they could talk to honestly and confidentially.

    Was talking to your analyst all that different than confessing to a priest?

    It is, but the talking is better than nothing, if done in moderation. The priest has various other killer apps that go along with it (absolution, redemption, sanctification), but the talking is the first step.

    A lot of my pastoral care consisted of listening with authentic interest to the (often elderly) lonely as they talked about their lives. They were of the opinion that it was helpful to them. It was rarely in the context of confession.

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  157. @Luke Lea
    Now that Marxism and Freudianism are passe, what (or who) will be next? Catastrophic global warming?

    No worries, JudithButlerism is still going strong.

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    • Replies: @Formerly CARealist
    "judithButlerism"

    Now there's a scary religion. If you haven't read up on her lately, then you're due a real treat. Yikes! A JC English class that my son didn't wind up taking had her as assigned reading. Man, education is really hurting these days.
  158. Has anyone read a book called “How Einstein Ruined Physics”?

    If so, what are your thoughts?

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  159. guest says:
    @C. Van Carter
    It's likely Freud got the notion of "dream as the expression of a submerged wish" from Shakespeare (Banquo), who got it from Plato via Chalcidius (see C.S. Lewis's The Discarded Image).

    Banquo came to Macbeth in waking life, at least in the more famous scene. That was a hallucination, not a dream. What was the submerged wish regarding Banquo, anyway? Macbeth wanted to fail? That’s pretty vague.

    No doubt Freud would be able to twist it into some fantasy no doubt involving castration. But is there any actual substance to this, or is it speculation? And why wouldn’t Freud take it from any of the more famous literary dreams?

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  160. Btw. Karl Marx was the son of Heinrich Marx, former Hershel, a lawyer, who converted to Lutheranism.

    Karl Marx disliked it to be called a jew – because he wasn’t one.

    And Marx had lots of things to say against Jews. That’s why he’s frequently accused of anti-semitism – not least by Jews: To this day.

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    • Replies: @guest
    Marx (an ethnic though not religious Jew) is open to the charge of anti-semitism because he "spoke out of school." You want to criticize the family, do it within the family. Jews are remarkably hard on Jews when they think only other Jews are listening. (This is true of all kinds of people, I'd say. Unless they're insane one-worlders like our ruling class.) Say the same sort of thing in front of gentiles, however, and watch out!

    Freud, like Marx, wasn't religious. But he was more at home in the community. He was proud of having resisted attempts to get him to "sell out," as it were, to the larger gentile community. There was ethnic pride, and definitely outsider's pride. Marx was more interested in getting his program across, and if he could use the Jewish example for propaganda purposes, all the better.

  161. Jim says:
    @kaganovitch
    In addition to Nabokov and Conrad, Wittgenstein was a sharp critic of Freudianism . Freudian thought's popularity in France has much to do with the baleful influence of Jacques Lacan. In general, obscurantist and abstruse theorizing is always fashionable in France,as witness the popularity in France of of Derrida,Foucalt, de Man etc.

    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Thanks.
    , @Dieter Kief

    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.
     
    Habermas has it the other way round: He criticized Freud for the theoretical inconsistency that lies at the basis of Freuds "Meta-Psychology" (Habermas). Habermas attacks Freud's misconception of his own achievements. He shows, that Freud was not, what he thought he should and would be: A natural scientist.
    What Freud really was, he was the founder of a hermeneutic practise called psychoanalysis, which is aimed at straightening out misconceptions of oneself with the help of a patient and attentive "other" - the psychoanalyst.

    Therefor, Popper wasn't completely wrong about Freud, but he was far away from being right.

    That's one of the really groundbreaking pieces by Habermas and it's only few pages long - see J. Habermas, Knowledge and Human Interests (1972 english transl.) - Freud's misconception of himself as natural-scientist (my rough translation).

  162. Jim says:
    @dearieme
    It says much for the good sense of the semi-philistine middle classes that they largely rumbled Freud and Marx from the off.

    Einstein is a different case. First, he was undoubtedly the greatest mathematical physicist except for Newton, and a century has rolled by without a plausible challenger appearing. But the thing that strikes me about Einstein is how perfectly he identified his own niche. He was, as he admitted, no mathematician. There's not the least sign that he could have been an experimental physicist. But at mathematical physics: golly!

    I wonder how he would have done over the past fifty years when genetics, not physics, has been the scientific Big Deal.

    Einstein’s work on Brownian motion contained important contributions to the twentieth century development of the theory of stochastic processes.

    Read More
  163. @Jack D

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?
     
    Wrong on all counts. He's very well known and Jewish institutions are named for him even today. He's as Jewish as can be. He lived in Spain which is certainly in the West and at a time when the Arab world was more interested in the ancient Western thinkers of Greece and Rome than were Christian Europeans. He is also a remarkably clear thinker - if you read his stuff, a lot of it is common sensical, straightforward and accessible even today. He doesn't seem lost in Medieval obscurantism at all, even compared to Jewish thinkers who lived centuries later (e.g. Isaac Luria, let alone Freud and Marx) whose work is mystical gobbledy gook as far as I am concerned.

    Since most of his work is of a religious nature, this alone disqualifies him from being a thought leader today. St. Augustine is also not on the 21st century hit parade.

    But he wore funny clothes…

    Read More
  164. @Anon
    Kafka, though fiction writer, will go down as the greatest Jewish thinker of modern times.

    Dylan, though singer-songwriter, will go down as the modern Jewish prophet.

    Kubrick, though film-maker, will go down as the great visionary.

    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Peripatetic commenter

    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?
     
    The Times They Are A-Changin'
    , @Lord of Wombats
    "What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?"

    There are several meaning of 'prophet'.

    One would be a seer or soothsayer, predictor of things to come.

    But not all Jewish prophets were of that kind. Rather, their visions, dreams, exhortations, reflections, and etc. defined the Zeitgeist.

    And Dylan played this role in the 60s. He wasn't a fortune teller or Nostradamus, but his sound and fury did embody the hopes, dreams, anxieties, and nightmares of the period... and he was ahead of everyone else.

    At a time when most Jews were city-dwellers, he came from the 'wilderness' of small town Minnesota. And his image was made more 'nomadic' by emulating Woody Guthrie.
    He joined the Folk Movement that was closely associated with Civil Rights and Revolutionary Politics. He not only joined but became its poetic voice because of his brilliance as song-writer.
    And yet he was ahead of others. While most folkies were so ideological and earnest, Dylan added lots of humor and wit to his act. He seemed both sincere and sardonic. He seemed to have a premonition that every dream has its dark side, like the moon.
    The nightmare.

    But he sensed something that a lot of folkies didn't. Folkies and many Libs really believe in the Dream and that a new era was dawning. Dylan saw the dark signs ahead, and he soon rebelled against the orthodoxy of the movement. He went electric, and then he became the darling of the Rock community. He seemed ahead of everyone... but just before the Summer of Love in 67, Dylan retreated and saw the warning signs ahead. Just when so many though drugs and love would be the answer, Dylan had already seen further in 66 and settled for family life and a kind of religiosity. He envisioned Altamont even in 66.

    The media wanted Dylan to be the spokesman of the generation, and Dylan refused. But in that refusal he became an even more potent spokesman because the boomers realized that all their naive dreams weren't coming true. The hippies would turn yuppies and the boomers would turn into the Clintons and Kerrys doing exactly what they reviled in the older generation.

    In Dylan songs, there is the sense that the joke is really on you. The boomer generation laughed a Mr. Jones of BALLAD OF THE THIN MAN, but they didn't themselves know what is happening to them and their world.

    Dylan sensed this irony and anxiety and expressed it in songs like IT'S ALL OVER NOW, BABY BLUE and ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER.

    He is the great prophet of his generation. He also fused the traditional with the modern, the spiritual with the personal.

    All your seasick sailors, they are rowing home
    Your empty handed armies, are all going home
    Your lover who just walked out the door
    Has taken all his blankets from the floor
    The carpet, too, is moving under you
    And it's all over now, Baby Blue.

    ---------------------

    All along the watchtower, princes kept the view
    While all the women came and went, barefoot servants, too
    Outside in the distance a wildcat did growl
    Two riders were approaching, the wind began to howl

  165. @Jonathan Mason
    One of Freud's most significant ideas was that most neuroses were caused by partially or fully forgotten sexual experiences of childhood, or having witnessed sexual acts in childhood.

    Although this aspect of Freudianism tends to be forgotten, it certainly lives on in the child abuse industry, and it is commonly believed today that childhood sexual experiences and sexual trauma are the cause of mental illness later in life.

    [It] is commonly believed today that childhood [sexual trauma is] the cause of mental illness later in life.

    Is that off-base? Aren’t some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?

    Read More
    • Replies: @melendwyr

    Is that off-base? Aren’t some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?
     
    Short answer: if we know the causes for a mental condition, it's moved to the physical kinds of medicine. If something's called a "mental illness", it's because we don't know what causes it - and often we can't even rigorously define it or explain how or why treatments work.

    Sure, that's true of lots of physical conditions. But it's true of 100% of mental illnesses. (The very name is a metaphor trying to cover up our ignorance.)
  166. IBC says:
    @advancedatheist
    The Jews Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck invented cognitive-behavioral therapy, though apparently out of frustration with the failure of psychoanalysis to help their respective patients.

    Perhaps CBT works better because it has roots in gentile wisdom traditions like Stoicism and Buddhism.

    Beck and Ellis should be a lot better known than they are, both for due credit’s sake and also because so many people could benefit from their ideas and techniques. CBT is more effective than Freudian psychoanalysis because it’s a pragmatic set of approaches to actually solving problems rather than just explaining them. It’s not as entertaining as what Freud cooked-up, but it’s a whole lot more useful to the silent majority of people who aren’t English professors or Hollywood script writers.

    Read More
    • Replies: @melendwyr
    Agreed. Even when CBT makes value judgments that can't be justified, that matters little to the effectiveness of its interventions. If you want to change the way you think and relate to something, CBT's methods are the way to go. (Whether you'll be correct in doing so is more complicated.)

    And - surprise, surprise - it can be summed up as propagandizing and desensitizing yourself.

    Everyone who really cares about shifting people's attitudes uses similar methods, for the same reason that engineers use the same techniques for dealing with similar problems - THEY WORK.
    , @Steve Sailer
    There are some hints that Obama did some cognitive behavioral therapy to get out of his depression after his 2000 electoral defeat. If so, it probably did him a lot of good.

    If true he should write about it one of his upcoming autobiographies.
  167. Currahee says:

    As an English lit major in the 60′s, I remember that freudianism pervaded all analysis much more so than religion (which was a much more valid and pertinent tool). But the subject artists were Christian and the professors were Jewish.

    Deviation or skepticism was heresy.

    Read More
  168. ricpic says:

    Only Einstein, of the three figures discussed, still has not been proven wrong. He opposed the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle because he was convinced the universe could be explained in a simple elegant formula and he realized the HUP made that impossible. The physics “community” embraced the HUP and the result has been an increasingly convoluted tortured series of explanations that explain nothing.

    Read More
  169. melendwyr says: • Website
    @candid_observer
    I don't see much of analogy between the situation of Jews before, say, the nineteenth century, and that of blacks before they made their way into professional sports. Blacks just weren't allowed, so of course they weren't represented in professional sports until afterwards -- there's nothing to explain there.

    But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?

    There are any number of gentile scientists who lacked any real formal education in math or science and yet, seemingly because they couldn't stop themselves from pursuing the subjects, in the end achieved great things. Some of these scientists/mathematicians managed to do this despite having to make a living at other things. If you read about the lives of, say, George Green, Michael Farady, Oliver Heaviside, Nathaniel Bowditch, or for that matter Ben Franklin, you get the strong sense that these were men who were determined to learn everything they could about a subject that fascinated them, despite their lack of formal education or independent means. I'm not sure I can think of a Jewish equivalent -- though perhaps Spinoza, albeit not a scientist, comes closest.

    And it's also insufficient, I think, to say that Jews only appreciated Talmudic studies as an avocation. Many of the gentile "amateur" scientists, including those I just mentioned, seemed to be driven to do their science or math at the expense of everything that might naturally bring them honor and appreciation -- certainly many of us know STEM people who appear to be so motivated.

    Another thing that strikes me as quite peculiar is how little mathematics Jews seemed to have developed even to do the sort of work for which they were uniquely employed, namely as money lenders. As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what's going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.

    Best guess off the top of the head – no motivation to stick out, leave the herd, revolutionize things. Conformity is highly valued. Smart Jews that questioned tradition usually ended up leaving the faith/ethnic association; Spinoza is a good example.

    Making discoveries requires indifference to fitting in. Probably why China isn’t all that great at innovation nowadays.

    Read More
  170. guest says:
    @Crawfurdmuir

    Freud, Marx, and Einstein together can serve as a pretty good proxy for the ideas that animated the twentieth century. If you add in Darwin, the set would be more comprehensive, but that would break the Jewish symmetry.
     
    Adding Darwin would be a mistake, not only because he was not Jewish, but also because the social implications of his thought are - needless to say - those of social Darwinism, which goes in a direction quite opposite to that of Marxist egalitarianism. The full title of Darwin's celebrated work is On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. The notion of "favoured races" leads naturally to early HBD thinking, exemplified by the early physical anthropologists, and to eugenics, conceived and advocated during Darwin's lifetime by his kinsman, Sir Francis Galton.

    Such ideas, needless to say, have been purged from the received wisdom on grounds of being proto-Hitlerian, so all that really remains in the popular consciousness from Darwin is a plausible creation myth that dispenses with the need for God. This is the purpose for which Darwinism is now taught in public education, to the distress of fundamentalist Christians and the delight of cultural Marxists. We have lost, thanks to this, and the propagandistic play and movie Inherit the Wind, a correct understanding of the infamous Scopes trial, in which the Nietzschean and anti-egalitarian H.L. Mencken was the principal publicist on behalf of the defendant, against the Christian pacifist and egalitarian William Jennings Bryan. Today we perceive their struggle as one of enlightened liberalism against religious obscurantism. Wherever the shade of Mencken now reposes he is probably laughing.

    A better figure to include in the quartet than Darwin would be Franz Boas, who not only fits in it as a Jew, but also as an exponent of egalitarianism and cultural relativism. It is not through the lens of Darwinist thought that we view other peoples, but rather through that of Boas.

    There’s the historical Darwin, then there’s the Useful Darwin, who is stretched or stuffed to fit other people’s purposes. Like everything else fashioned by our intellectual elite, contemporarily popular Darwin is an up to date liberal (I can’t say progressive, because the actual Progressive Darwin was killed by Hitler). They like to ignore his social implications, and pretend Social Darwinists were all libertarians who justified the cruelties of Robber Barons when they weren’t Nazis, or both. (What’s the difference amongst non-up-to-date liberals?)

    I wonder why it’s been so easy to pretend Darwin wasn’t a Social Darwinist, and to memory-hole all non-Spencerian and non-Hitlerian Social Darwinists. It helps when your intellectual predominance goes virtually unchallenged for over a century, and you can pretend everyone who doesn’t agree with you is an anti-intellectual. Which is the only reason why Richard Hofstadter’s nonsense can be taken seriously. (Though he was an engaging writer and did produce some good history, just not in this area.)

    Read More
  171. @pyrrhus
    Freud was covering up, consciously or unconsciously, for a Viennese society in which his mentor, and many others, were having sex with children, including their own. Hence all the weird theories to account for dreams of daughters having sex with their fathers, and others....
    The fact that people, especially Jewish people, bought into this nonsense is quite telling.

    This is what Masson claimed, but subsequent scholarship has demonstrated that Freud made all of it up. Nobody (with the possible exception of Herr K. in the case of Dora) had, or tried to have, sex with children in Freud’s patient group.

    Read More
  172. @Jim
    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.

    Thanks.

    Read More
  173. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @Anonymous
    Kubrick is not my type of filmmaker at all (what I call art cinema is mainly an Asian movement: Russia, Japan) but he was a really great cinema director, he's definitely in nearly anyone's serious 20th century top 20 (and in many serious cinema lovers' top 10) (and he is a giant by Hollywood standards. Scorsese David Lynch and Cimino being two of the few others)

    Kafka is possibly the best writer of the 20th century (for me he is), surely in anyone's top 5.

    Mentioning Dylan alongside Kubrick and Kafka is a way of offending Kubrick and Kafka -- although in good faith ;)

    As a songwriter, I’m not sure Dylan is better than Bruce Springsteen, to be honest (though my high school English teacher was dismissive, describing Bruce as “good music to listen to while mowing your lawn”.

    Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey was a surpassing achievement though, arguably a better film than any song or book that Dylan or Kafka wrote.

    Read More
  174. @Mikey Darmody
    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?

    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?

    The Times They Are A-Changin’

    Read More
  175. @Mikey Darmody
    What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?

    “What exactly did Bob Dylan prophesy?”

    There are several meaning of ‘prophet’.

    One would be a seer or soothsayer, predictor of things to come.

    But not all Jewish prophets were of that kind. Rather, their visions, dreams, exhortations, reflections, and etc. defined the Zeitgeist.

    And Dylan played this role in the 60s. He wasn’t a fortune teller or Nostradamus, but his sound and fury did embody the hopes, dreams, anxieties, and nightmares of the period… and he was ahead of everyone else.

    At a time when most Jews were city-dwellers, he came from the ‘wilderness’ of small town Minnesota. And his image was made more ‘nomadic’ by emulating Woody Guthrie.
    He joined the Folk Movement that was closely associated with Civil Rights and Revolutionary Politics. He not only joined but became its poetic voice because of his brilliance as song-writer.
    And yet he was ahead of others. While most folkies were so ideological and earnest, Dylan added lots of humor and wit to his act. He seemed both sincere and sardonic. He seemed to have a premonition that every dream has its dark side, like the moon.
    The nightmare.

    But he sensed something that a lot of folkies didn’t. Folkies and many Libs really believe in the Dream and that a new era was dawning. Dylan saw the dark signs ahead, and he soon rebelled against the orthodoxy of the movement. He went electric, and then he became the darling of the Rock community. He seemed ahead of everyone… but just before the Summer of Love in 67, Dylan retreated and saw the warning signs ahead. Just when so many though drugs and love would be the answer, Dylan had already seen further in 66 and settled for family life and a kind of religiosity. He envisioned Altamont even in 66.

    The media wanted Dylan to be the spokesman of the generation, and Dylan refused. But in that refusal he became an even more potent spokesman because the boomers realized that all their naive dreams weren’t coming true. The hippies would turn yuppies and the boomers would turn into the Clintons and Kerrys doing exactly what they reviled in the older generation.

    In Dylan songs, there is the sense that the joke is really on you. The boomer generation laughed a Mr. Jones of BALLAD OF THE THIN MAN, but they didn’t themselves know what is happening to them and their world.

    Dylan sensed this irony and anxiety and expressed it in songs like IT’S ALL OVER NOW, BABY BLUE and ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER.

    He is the great prophet of his generation. He also fused the traditional with the modern, the spiritual with the personal.

    All your seasick sailors, they are rowing home
    Your empty handed armies, are all going home
    Your lover who just walked out the door
    Has taken all his blankets from the floor
    The carpet, too, is moving under you
    And it’s all over now, Baby Blue.

    ———————

    All along the watchtower, princes kept the view
    While all the women came and went, barefoot servants, too
    Outside in the distance a wildcat did growl
    Two riders were approaching, the wind began to howl

    Read More
  176. melendwyr says: • Website
    @IBC
    Beck and Ellis should be a lot better known than they are, both for due credit's sake and also because so many people could benefit from their ideas and techniques. CBT is more effective than Freudian psychoanalysis because it's a pragmatic set of approaches to actually solving problems rather than just explaining them. It's not as entertaining as what Freud cooked-up, but it's a whole lot more useful to the silent majority of people who aren't English professors or Hollywood script writers.

    Agreed. Even when CBT makes value judgments that can’t be justified, that matters little to the effectiveness of its interventions. If you want to change the way you think and relate to something, CBT’s methods are the way to go. (Whether you’ll be correct in doing so is more complicated.)

    And – surprise, surprise – it can be summed up as propagandizing and desensitizing yourself.

    Everyone who really cares about shifting people’s attitudes uses similar methods, for the same reason that engineers use the same techniques for dealing with similar problems – THEY WORK.

    Read More
  177. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @guest
    Since "unconscious" (Mr. I-Don't-Know) was an unscientific and deliberately mysterious term, what's the difference? The greatest intellectual contest I can imagine would be to reward the first person who can demonstrate a practical difference between unconscious and subconscious.
    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    That's all quackery, of course. And notice how they casually synonymize "preconscious" and "subconscious," which so far as I know Freud did not do. I don't think there's a real difference between precinscious and unconscious, but go ahead and subdivide abstract categories of mind if you want.
  178. @Stan Adams

    As far as I can tell, the collapse of Freud’s reputation has not led to much general Jewish doubts about Jewish intellectual influence.
     
    Frequently, even permanently, in error; never in doubt.

    All of the members of Ayn Rand's inner circle were Jewish; in fact, almost all of them were related to one another by blood or marriage. Alan Greenspan, a Rand favorite who was not related to her, is yet another example of a Jewish genius whose once-soaring reputation has crashed down to earth.

    So Marx, Freud, and Greenspan have been discredited ... now all we need to do is prove that Einstein stole his ideas from some unsuspecting goyishe schmuck.

    Better pack a lunch.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Stan Adams
    My favorite lunch joint has a heavily-Jewish clientele. I overhear many interesting things.

    An older Jewish man - owner of a clothing shop - was complaining about a former employee of his. He suspected her of stealing; thus, he fired her. The situation was somewhat delicate, as she was married to his cousin. Evidently her kvetching over her "unjust" dismissal had rent asunder the family harmony.

    "Is she Jewish?" his companion asked.

    "Only by injection," the old man replied.

    After the laughter had died down, he added: "She's Italian. But she would have made a good Jew."
  179. melendwyr says: • Website
    @AnotherGuessModel
    [It] is commonly believed today that childhood [sexual trauma is] the cause of mental illness later in life.

    Is that off-base? Aren't some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?

    Is that off-base? Aren’t some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?

    Short answer: if we know the causes for a mental condition, it’s moved to the physical kinds of medicine. If something’s called a “mental illness”, it’s because we don’t know what causes it – and often we can’t even rigorously define it or explain how or why treatments work.

    Sure, that’s true of lots of physical conditions. But it’s true of 100% of mental illnesses. (The very name is a metaphor trying to cover up our ignorance.)

    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    "The very name is a metaphor trying to cover up our ignorance"

    I agree, and I'm constantly surprised at how few people notice. When I try to explain that mental disease is metaphorical at best, they think I'm saying the mentally diseased are a-okay. No, there's obviously something wrong with a lot of people, but we don't know what just because we assigned a name to it.

    With the rest of medicine there's etiology. There's biological reasoning involved, with a concept of physical cause and effect. Not very well understood for every disease, but at least we have an idea what we do and don't understand. Through trial and error there are developed diagnoses and treatments, with some way to objectively measure progress.

    Psychiatry, on the other hand, literally treats the soul. Their illnesses are floating somewhere in the aether around your body, and you just have to take their word for it that your money is well spent.

  180. @Jus' Sayin'...
    The most insightful critique of Freudian theories that I ever read was an essay by the renowned management consultant, Peter Drucker. Drucker was born into and grew up in the same Viennese, upper-class, Jewish community as Freud. His parents knew Freud and many of his patients. Drucker was acquainted with the families involved in Freud's most famous published case studies. He points out that it is obvious even from Freud's descriptions that all his patients were suffering from severe anxieties relating to financial uncertainty and extremely unstable social status. Dora was the young daughter of a family who expected her to keep the family afloat by marrying a much older man whom she despised. Wolf man was the son of an aristocratic Russian family facing severe financial and political problems. Little Hans's family was on the fringes of upper class Viennese society. And so on. Drucker argued that it was insecurities and stresses like these and not sexual problems that caused the neuroses of most patients. Problems like these were endemic among the upper class Viennese Jews whom Freud treated and whose high status was very precarious in fin de siecle and post WW I Austria.

    So Jane Austen would have been a better guide to understanding Freud’s patients’ problems?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Desiderius
    Maybe is Austen were writing in the 1930's.
    , @kaganovitch
    Yes, that's very well put.
  181. @I, Libertine
    Is Einstein really overrated? I'm no expert, but it seem to me that, unlike the other two, his ideas stand up pretty well against what we can observe in the real world.

    The only thing Freud was right about was Shakespeare.

    Is Einstein really overrated?

    No.

    Read More
  182. @benjaminl
    Just to extend this...

    Most of the '68er "post-structuralists" whose legacy has such a baleful influence on US academia took Freud for granted, and then made it somehow even worse.

    Just read the first paragraph of any of these, and picture generations of American grad students trying to imitate them as models.

    Derrida, "Freud and the Scene of Writing" - 646 citations on Google Scholar
    https://www.jstor.org/stable/2929625

    Althusser, "On Marx and Freud" - 58 citations
    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/08935699108657950?journalCode=rrmx20

    Deleuze and Guattari, Anti-Oedipus: On Capitalism and Schizophrenia - 8946 citations
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Oedipus


    Then, apparently, the next generation of French intellectuals broke free of this stuff, even as it was ruining American academia:
    https://www.amazon.com/French-Philosophy-Sixties-Antihumanism-Adventure/dp/0870236954
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal_Bruckner
    http://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-arts-and-culture/books/193400/my-father-the-anti-semite

    Pascal Bruckner is absolutely ruthless on multiculturalism and white guilt.


    Back in the US, I will always have some respect for the New York Review of Books (in spite of everything) for publishing Frederick Crews demolishing Freud during the 1980s and 1990s (as cited by syonredux above)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Crews
    Even though the NYRB comes from the milieu of the New York Intellectuals, at least in this case, they believed in rational argument and evidence, even if it involved attacking a hero like Freud. It wasn't all about who-whom yet, apparently.

    I fear that liberals with that sense of fair play and rationality are dying out and being replaced by SJWs, because the most prominent ones I can think of are all over 50 or older. Nat Hentoff, Alan Sokal, Christina Hoff Sommers, Harvey Silverglate, Mickey Kaus, Jonathan Haidt...


    PS - you can download journal articles via sci-hub even if you're not at a university...

    https://telegram.me/scihubbot

    I try to skim each issue of the New York Review of Books. The contributors are pretty elderly, but they are, on the good side, mature. I can’t score a lot of easy points off them the way I can score off the more clickbaity left of center website like The Atlantic.

    Read More
  183. @Jack D

    Maimonides?

    Too obscure? Not Jewish enough? Not Western enough for idolizing?
     
    Wrong on all counts. He's very well known and Jewish institutions are named for him even today. He's as Jewish as can be. He lived in Spain which is certainly in the West and at a time when the Arab world was more interested in the ancient Western thinkers of Greece and Rome than were Christian Europeans. He is also a remarkably clear thinker - if you read his stuff, a lot of it is common sensical, straightforward and accessible even today. He doesn't seem lost in Medieval obscurantism at all, even compared to Jewish thinkers who lived centuries later (e.g. Isaac Luria, let alone Freud and Marx) whose work is mystical gobbledy gook as far as I am concerned.

    Since most of his work is of a religious nature, this alone disqualifies him from being a thought leader today. St. Augustine is also not on the 21st century hit parade.

    But seriously, I agree that everyone on that list was one of the greats. The question I was trying to answer is why the bourgeois Jews of the turn-of-the-century West did not adopt them as idols instead of the false prophets, Freud and Marx? And since the bourgeois are notoriously moved by style over substance, I was wondering aloud if that might have had something to do with it, especially in the case of Maimonides, who was truly a giant, the more so for his achievements in a time and place that the modern West does not usually consider conducive to greatness.

    Whatever else they were, Freud, Marx and Einstein were all sons of the mitteleuropäisch bourgeoisie who wore suits with cravats and could speak hochdeutsch while drinking their coffee with correct etiquette. Well, Marx had wild hair, but that’s why he was the bad boy pin-up for the proletarians and the outcasts.

    Maimonides wasn’t any of these things. He was just good and true. But of such things, idols are not made.

    Mahler was these things, was something of a celebrity, had a hot shiksa wife (well, maybe that was a liability with distaff Hebrews), but he was a feeler not a thinker, and not really quotable as a basis of a philosophical system.

    The continuing obscurity of Heine still puzzles me. He had the bourgeois virtues plus a very modern bourgeois-revolutionary streak. And he was in some sense the source code for those later inferior minds Marx and Freud, who certainly, in the case of Marx, and almost certainly, in the case of Freud, read him.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Early 20th Century American Jews loved English literature: that's why they gave so many of their sons the names of English poets like Milton and Sidney.
  184. @guest
    Since "unconscious" (Mr. I-Don't-Know) was an unscientific and deliberately mysterious term, what's the difference? The greatest intellectual contest I can imagine would be to reward the first person who can demonstrate a practical difference between unconscious and subconscious.

    Unconscious is when you’re knocked out cold and your Subconscious is the mousy, neurotic part of your mind you are aware i.e. conscious of chiding your Inner Goddess for being a depraved slut.

    Read More
  185. @benjaminl
    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I'm really no expert, but I'm suspicious.

    Jeeves liked Spinoza.

    Read More
  186. syonredux says:
    @benjaminl
    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I'm really no expert, but I'm suspicious.

    Andrew Joyce argues that Spinoza is overrated.

    http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2013/03/pariah-to-messiah-the-engineered-apotheosis-of-baruch-spinoza-part-1-of-3/

    I’m really no expert, but I’m suspicious.

    There’s no question that some people overrate Spinoza (cf, for example, the work of Jonathan Israel), but Joyce overstates things. Spinoza is a significant thinker.

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  187. guest says:
    @Dave Pinsen

    That’s all quackery, of course. And notice how they casually synonymize “preconscious” and “subconscious,” which so far as I know Freud did not do. I don’t think there’s a real difference between precinscious and unconscious, but go ahead and subdivide abstract categories of mind if you want.

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  188. @guest
    Wittgenstein had him as a mythologist, which I think is better. He has Freud's "unconscious" renamed Mr. I-Don't-Know, which I love.

    Freud's supposedly great insights into human motivation were more often plain wrong than insightful. Though they were occasionally insightful, so I can see why novelists, dramatists, and poets made use of him. But the Freudian Age of Fiction was not a great one, and especially the "psychological novels" and psychological literature in general during this period sucks. Ugh, how many great writers were pulled down into the muck. And not just muck, but false muck.

    There is a book about literature of the previous century with a title I love, and which sums up its view of man: trousered apes.

    In Psychology 101 in 1977 we had to read an early novel by William Goldman that laboriously illustrated Freudian ideas in its plot. It was okay. Other stuff by William Goldman where he’s just illustrating his own ideas — Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, Princess Bride, Adventures in the Screen Trade — are much better.

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  189. @JohnnyD
    I always found Philip Roth to be more worthwhile than Freud. Roth's novels are great at psychoanalyzing insecure and alienated Jews living in post-war America. Also, if you want to understand the Jewish hysteria about Trump, I recommend Roth's "Plot Against America."

    Major novelists like Roth and Updike are really, really smart. You can become a cult leader by being a second rate novelist like Rand or a fourth rate novelist like Hubbard, but being a first rate novelist is very hard.

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    • Replies: @melendwyr
    I've gotta disagree - much of the pre-Scientology Hubbard stuff is pretty good, particularly the shorter works, and overall his craft is considerably better than Rand, who developed some pretty serious problems by the later part of her career when she no longer felt the need for others' advice or editing. (Oy.) There are good reasons why he was a respected SF author.

    I grant you that Hubbard turned out some garbage (like Stephen King, who wrote several terrible and long drug-fueled novels and has fantastic short story work and some respectable long works), and everything he wrote after starting a religion and realizing how profitable it was is terrible.

    In both cases, Rand and Hubbard, I think they really started to go downhill once they were surrounded by people who idolized them and never challenged their ideas. It's really, really difficult to be one's own worst critic, and intelligent criticism is absolutely necessary.
  190. guest says:
    @Dieter Kief
    Btw. Karl Marx was the son of Heinrich Marx, former Hershel, a lawyer, who converted to Lutheranism.

    Karl Marx disliked it to be called a jew - because he wasn't one.

    And Marx had lots of things to say against Jews. That's why he's frequently accused of anti-semitism - not least by Jews: To this day.

    Marx (an ethnic though not religious Jew) is open to the charge of anti-semitism because he “spoke out of school.” You want to criticize the family, do it within the family. Jews are remarkably hard on Jews when they think only other Jews are listening. (This is true of all kinds of people, I’d say. Unless they’re insane one-worlders like our ruling class.) Say the same sort of thing in front of gentiles, however, and watch out!

    Freud, like Marx, wasn’t religious. But he was more at home in the community. He was proud of having resisted attempts to get him to “sell out,” as it were, to the larger gentile community. There was ethnic pride, and definitely outsider’s pride. Marx was more interested in getting his program across, and if he could use the Jewish example for propaganda purposes, all the better.

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  191. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    “Freudianism’s immense prestige no doubt set back the psychological sciences by a few decades.”

    The impression I got from psyc classes in college, is that Freud’s ideas are basically thought of by the psyc community as probably not true, but maybe still beneficial in some ways as an alternate way to think about issues, and he did a lot of good for the psyc community and his patients.

    Basically, downplaying the bad and overstating the good.

    Freud himself said that his ideas did not need scientific validation, they were simply true, which boggles the mind of any serious scientist.

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  192. guest says:
    @JohnnyD
    I always found Philip Roth to be more worthwhile than Freud. Roth's novels are great at psychoanalyzing insecure and alienated Jews living in post-war America. Also, if you want to understand the Jewish hysteria about Trump, I recommend Roth's "Plot Against America."

    I read some of “The Plot Against America” because I’m interested in Lindbergh and despise FDR. I found it ridiculous, but not as silly as I thought it would be going in.

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    • Replies: @JohnnyD
    @guest,
    The "Plot Against America" is not a very good novel. But it shows how paranoid and irrational American Jews are about populist and nationalist movements. I don't think that was Roth's intention though.
  193. Plato’s “soul chariot” always seemed like a remarkably persuasive model of the psyche to me. Id, ego, superego seemed not so much wrong, as a fairly bleeding obvious re-packaging.

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  194. I don’t know enough about Freud or Marx to comment, but I would agree with your assessment that Einstein was the real deal. But, I think his importance does get vastly overblown–there seems to be a belief that he was head and shoulders above everyone else and the greatest physicist ever. While certainly one of the greatest, I wouldn’t put him as the greatest, and certainly not head and shoulders above everyone else.

    For example, the space time transformations used in relativity are not called the Einstein transformations–they’re called the Lorentz transformations, because a physicist/mathematician H.A. Lorentz had already derived them 5-10 years before Einstein started publishing. Einstein provided a very clear, simple, derivation of them based one one principle (constant speed of light) and so his paper became hugely well known, but even if Einstein had never been around relativistic effects would have been fairly well sussed out in the early part of the 20th century.

    Likewise, many of his other publications were simply applying the recently developed statistical thermodynamics to interesting problems–for example I think you could put the work on Brownian motion and coherent radiation into this bucket. But statistical thermodynamics was developed by others in the late part of the 19th century, that was just cleanup work.

    General relativity (an update of Newton’s gravitation) was an amazing and and original accomplishment, but again the math required (geodesics, metrics, etc.) had already been developed. Contrast this to someone like Newton, who not only developed his eponymous mechanics, but also developed the mathematical framework (calculus) that you need to properly describe his creation.

    Even if you restrict yourself to the 20th century, quantum mechanics was the real revolution during that period, and Einstein was pretty much a bit player in that. Without quantum mechanics, you don’t have transistors or any other electronics (as well as a lot of other things.) Without general relativity? The only tech I can think of that requires that is the global positioning system.

    The odd thing about being a physics major is that everyone pushes Einstein as the avatar of the discipline, then you spend maybe 2 weeks a year on things he developed; about the same as someone like Boltzmann, who no one has ever heard of.

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    Einstein's position in popular culture benefited from him being a talented aphorist.
    , @Jack D
    Newton had the benefit of having lived at a time when math had not developed much since the Greeks, so he was in a better position to not only do the physics but invent the math underlying it. By Einstein's time, a lot more had been done mathematically so it was harder for him to invent a new mathematics. But there is no doubt that Einstein was a better conceptualizer than he was a mathematician . He's the greatest physicist of the 2oth century, not the greatest mathematician. A double threat guy like Newton is a once in a millennium phenomenon and it gets harder all the time as the scope of human knowledge increases so there are fewer unplowed fields.
    , @Crawfurdmuir
    Don't forget that David Hilbert arrived at a theory of general relativity at very nearly the same time as Einstein. They were in communication with each other, and there is dispute about who influenced whom.

    Einstein is by far the better known, I suspect, largely as the result of his association in popular consciousness with the development of the atomic bomb. In reality he had little more to do with it than lending his signature to a letter to a President Roosevelt that had been written by Leo Szilard, recommending that the United States commence a nuclear research program.
  195. guest says:
    @melendwyr

    Is that off-base? Aren’t some cases of mental illness the result of severe abuse/trauma?
     
    Short answer: if we know the causes for a mental condition, it's moved to the physical kinds of medicine. If something's called a "mental illness", it's because we don't know what causes it - and often we can't even rigorously define it or explain how or why treatments work.

    Sure, that's true of lots of physical conditions. But it's true of 100% of mental illnesses. (The very name is a metaphor trying to cover up our ignorance.)

    “The very name is a metaphor trying to cover up our ignorance”

    I agree, and I’m constantly surprised at how few people notice. When I try to explain that mental disease is metaphorical at best, they think I’m saying the mentally diseased are a-okay. No, there’s obviously something wrong with a lot of people, but we don’t know what just because we assigned a name to it.

    With the rest of medicine there’s etiology. There’s biological reasoning involved, with a concept of physical cause and effect. Not very well understood for every disease, but at least we have an idea what we do and don’t understand. Through trial and error there are developed diagnoses and treatments, with some way to objectively measure progress.

    Psychiatry, on the other hand, literally treats the soul. Their illnesses are floating somewhere in the aether around your body, and you just have to take their word for it that your money is well spent.

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  196. @Steve Sailer
    Better pack a lunch.

    My favorite lunch joint has a heavily-Jewish clientele. I overhear many interesting things.

    An older Jewish man – owner of a clothing shop – was complaining about a former employee of his. He suspected her of stealing; thus, he fired her. The situation was somewhat delicate, as she was married to his cousin. Evidently her kvetching over her “unjust” dismissal had rent asunder the family harmony.

    “Is she Jewish?” his companion asked.

    “Only by injection,” the old man replied.

    After the laughter had died down, he added: “She’s Italian. But she would have made a good Jew.”

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  197. guest says:
    @unpc downunder
    Freud was probably right that the subconscious and the sex-drive play an important role in mental disorders, but his explanations and methodology were based on a very primitive understanding of neuro-science. Cognitive therapy and chemical therapy have hit a ceiling terms of effectiveness and aren't very effective at dealing with chronic, moderate conditions, while the subconscious has become a hot topic again through evolutionary psychology and the rising popularity of brain-body therapies like yoga.

    The popular new idea now is that people with chronic, moderate mental health problems have dysregulated nervous systems, primarily because they don't experience an appropriate discharge of nervous tension following moderately stressful events.

    It's interesting that introverts have much higher rates of depression that extroverts, despite having similar levels of anxiety and introverts having more self-awareness. Hence extroverts probably have a superior way of discharging nervous stress. Similarly, the higher rate of depression in women may be related to women's evolutionary tendency to freeze in reaction to danger, rather than run or fight like males.

    Quite a lot of Freud’s importance relies on the answer to the question: did he discover anything, or did he just put down on paper what everyone already knew (in an unscientific and unrealistic form)? I’ve read many examples of Freud encountering (pre-Freudian) doctors who hinted or outright told him, almost as an afterthought, how this or that symptom was caused by some unconscious sexual something. His reaction would always be along the lines of, “Well, why don’t they say so!”

    That’s Freud in a nutshell, to me: the guy who exposed the dirty secrets of psychiatry to polite society. More than that, the guy who made it acceptable in polite society to talk about penises and what-not, because science.

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  198. syonredux says:
    @Anonymous
    "That agrees with my impression that Freudianism. . . ." I turn first thing in the morning with coffee and cake to read iSteve's often informative pieces on topics he has looked hard at and noticed something about. But from remarks like the one I quote above it is pretty obvious that Steve is flying blind about Freud as he has never read The Interpretation of Dreams, Freud's magnum opus. Steve is full of opinions about jews as a kind of separate species; it is his blind spot, not seeing a jew as having personal agency. Steve has personal agency, and believes what he has come to believe for his own reasons but a jew can't do that, not having personal agency, no more than a daisy in a field of daisies blowing in the wind.

    As for The Interpretation of Dreams, after much reflection, Freud came up with fruitful hypotheses many of which have been incorporated into our common understanding without the understander realizing that s/he is a Freudian. For example, the theory of wish-fulfillment in dreams, the notion of the tripartite nature of the mind (id, ego and super-ego [consciously or unconsciously borrowed by Freud from Plato's theory of the soul in the Republic]), the passive-agressive personality, self-censorship in one's dream work, the significance of the dreamer's affect (=emotion) associated with the event dreamed (i.e. dream of your father getting killed accompanied by intense feelings of grief means . . . guess what?). Reading the book is a significant step in one's self-education. It's like reading The Brothers Karamazov and recognizing previously unknown/hidden psychic impulses in others and oneself.

    Also, one should distinguish between Freud the thinker and Freudian practioners of a not very successful therapy for troubled folks. It's like "deep thinkers" popping off about Leo Strauss without ever having read anything he ever wrote. If Jenny Strauss Clay (Strauss' adopted daughter) writes an op-ed piece in the NYTimes reporting that her father voted for Adlai Stevenson twice rather than for Eisenhower, and was not particularly interested in American politics, that has no effect whatsoever on the "deep thinkers" explaining how Strauss is the Luciferian influence behind the neo-cons.

    But from remarks like the one I quote above it is pretty obvious that Steve is flying blind about Freud as he has never read The Interpretation of Dreams, Freud’s magnum opus.

    Isn’t that the one that everyone has read?

    As for The Interpretation of Dreams, after much reflection, Freud came up with fruitful hypotheses many of which have been incorporated into our common understanding without the understander realizing that s/he is a Freudian. For example, the theory of wish-fulfillment in dreams,

    Did not originate with Freud…..

    the notion of the tripartite nature of the mind (id, ego and super-ego [consciously or unconsciously borrowed by Freud from Plato's theory of the soul in the Republic]),

    As you noted, did not originate with Freud…..

    the passive-agressive personality, self-censorship in one’s dream work,

    Yeah, the self-censor……Does anyone still buy that?

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  199. I feel about Freud the way I feel about writers such as Joseph Cambell or C.S. Lewis’s good friend Owen Barfield: their work is best appreciated as speculative non-fiction, not as actual psychology, anthropology, or linguistics. They offer interesting ideas, a poetic view of the world, and reading them is a pleasure, though the “truth” value they offer is limited. I still enjoy thumbing through The Pleasure Principle on occasion.

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  200. TZ says:

    The case of Freud himself, founder of ‘psychoanalysis’, is quite typical in this respect, for he never ceased to declare himself a materalist. One further remark: why is it that the principal representatives of the new tendencies, like Einstein in physics, Bergson in philosophy, Freud in psychology, and many others of less importance, are almost all of Jewish origin, unless it be because there is something involved that is closely bound up with the ‘malefic’ and dissolving aspect of nomadism when it is deviated, and because that aspect must inevitably predominate in Jews detached from their tradition?
    -René Guénon (The Reign of Quantity and the Signs of the Times)

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    • Replies: @syonredux

    René Guénon (The Reign of Quantity and the Signs of the Times)
     
    There's a guy that I simply cannot take seriously....
  201. Anon says: • Disclaimer
    @Anon
    I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as 'Old Stickyfingers.' If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you'd suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself. Eventually, when Dylan's 'inspiration' ran dry, it was because his fellow folkies had learned to avoid him like the plague. I was just listening to a podcast by a musican who said he and a few friends got a call from Dylan asking them to make a record with him, but when they showed up at the studio, Dylan didn't have any songs written. They just jammed, everyone contributing their own parts, yet all the writing was credited to Dylan on the record. That is seriously unethical.

    Dylan was also caught plagiarising a lot of passages from his recent and highly-praised autobiography from other books. It was a Dylan fan who exposed him, in fact. His paintings are just copies made straight from photos that even now can be found on the interet, though Dylan makes zero mention of this. In his remarks about his artwork he tries to give the impression that he thought up their compositions himself. Even Dylan's whole persona is a rip-off of Woody Guthrie, and Dylan's always lied and thrown up various smokescreens about his background.

    When you add it all up, Dylan's one hell of a plagiarist. He's a classic case of narcissistic personality disorder, and he's got the narcissist's trait of declaring that reality is just what he says it is. But he was and is well-protected by an enabling, unthinking, and drooling fanbase. It's going to take a lot of effort to cut him down to his proper place in our cultural history. He's a Jewish guy who's built a career for himself by constant theft from the work of non-Jewish creators that's been going on for over 55 years now.

    “I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as ‘Old Stickyfingers.’ ”

    Well, if VISION OF JOHANNA is the result of sticky-fingering, we need more sticky-fingering.

    “If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you’d suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself.”

    So, who wrote/played JUST LIKE A WOMAN for Dylan before he stole it?

    I think what the envious folkies are saying that they had some ideas, and Dylan used some of them, along with other ideas, as inspiration for his songs.

    Happens all the time in art.

    Opening scene of THE WILD BUNCH with ants and scorpions. Peckinpah got the idea from Emilio Fernandez who said that, as a child, he and his amigos would kill ants and scorpions that way when soldiers rode into town.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    There are various websites devoted to showing how one song was lifted from an earlier song. They're fun, but they tend to be kind of underwhelming. In particular, the legend that Led Zeppelin plagiarized a lot of their hits seems like more of a myth.
    , @Dumbo
    "Happens all the time in art"

    Yep. Shakespeare also "stole" most of his material (not that Dylan can be compared in any way to Shakespeare, it's just an example) from other sources.

    As they say, "good writers borrow, great writers steal." I think T. S. Eliot said that, or maybe he stole it from somebody else.
  202. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @guest
    What is a "disease" when it comes to the mind? I don't know enough about schizophrenia in particular, but if it's like other mental so-called diseases, it is a disease only in a metaphorical sense. If it doesn't have bodily causes, objective diagnosis, and prescribed treatments, why are we using the same word as we use to describe influenza, for instance? Most of mental health is in Fantasy Land regarding diagnosis and treatment, and that's not to even touch upon the play-acting doctor and patient participate in which we call therapy.

    Obviously, there's something wrong with people who have mental "diseases." But is the existence of some underlying something enough to say doctors aren't inventing diseases? Is the disease the thing wrong, or is it the diagnosis? To put it another way, if I come up with a false explanation for something affecting a person and call it a disease, isn't that inventing a disease even if there actually is something wrong with them?

    That’s essentially what the gays said to get homosexuality taken out of the DSM.

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    • Replies: @Formerly CARealist
    I don't know if Steve has already handled that topic, but it could probably use a refresher. Clearly there is something wrong with homosexuals, but whether it's physical, mental, spiritual, or a mixture is a pretty good one to hash out in this forum.
    , @guest
    That may be so, and maybe there are a sizeable number of psychiatry skeptics among homosexuals. I wouldn't know. But I assume for a lot of them, and definitely for the doctors who went along with it, it was a matter of relativity for me but not for thee.

    That is to say, they kept the rest of their diseases but dropped homosexuality because, hey, what's a "disease," man? That's, like, such a bourgeois concept.

    That's not where I'm coming from. I think the whole thing is half scam/half delusion. But I definitely, definitely think there's something wrong with people who get diagnosed. (Not all of them, of course.) They're not normal people who get unfairly tagged with an arbitrary label, like homos would have you believe. They're sick people, a lot of them, whom we can't diagnose because we lack the requisite knowledge.
  203. @Dieter Kief
    Interesting - but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
    It's very interesting, that Rorty as one of the really Frankfurt-leaning American thinkers in his latest book - about US Patriotism! - is attaccing the snowflake state-of-mind of nowadays xxx-rights activists. And Rorty hints at the lower classes - and their basic needs.
    Jürgen Habermas was a close friend of Richard Rorty and gave his book a warm welcome.

    I know, that I make our little discoursive world here maybe even more complicated than it was before - but what the heck!

    Interesting – but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.

    Emancipation, but from what? Justice, but how defined?

    Marcuse’s essay “Repressive Tolerance” (1965) argued that to tolerate certain types of expression was actually repressive to some persons or groups of persons in society. So, for example, suggestions that there might be innate inequalities between male and female, or between the white and negro, serve to repress women and blacks, and therefore tolerating the expression of such claims is itself repressive. The alternative to such “repressive tolerance” was “liberating tolerance.”

    Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. As to the scope of this tolerance and intolerance: … it would extend to the stage of action as well as of discussion and propaganda, of deed as well as of word.

    This is the intellectual justification of “political correctness,” and a better example of the moral inversion of meaning that Orwell portrayed in 1984 could not be produced. It is seen in action today in the behavior of self-proclaimed anti-fascists whose mode of action is to dress in black clothing and to perpetrate physical mayhem against persons with whom they disagree (just like Mussolini’s squadristi or Mosley’s “biff boys”). A person called Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, mouthpiece for a “progressive” entity called the Partnership for Civil Justice, said without an apparent trace of historic awareness:

    “Dressing all in black is not illegal,” she adds, addressing charging documents’ description of the group as being “dressed similarly to one another” in mostly black clothing before marching as a “cohesive unit.”

    The courageous antifa type that sucker-punched Richard Spencer was, on top of this, wearing a mask. When W.E.B. DuBois wrote that “The kind of thing that men are afraid or ashamed to do openly, and by day, they accomplish secretly, masked, and at night,” he was referring to the Ku Klux Klan. His censure could as well apply to the balaclava-wearing vandals of Inauguration Day, but they have carved out an exception for themselves based on their own moral vanity.

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don’t know what those words mean any more.

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    • Replies: @Desiderius

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don’t know what those words mean any more.
     
    It's just run-of-the-mill mendacity. The usual banality of evil. Don't give it more credit than it deserves.
    , @Dieter Kief
    The Frankfurt School was - and still is - about worker's rights, women's lib, civil rights, affirmative action even, as a compensation of past unjustices.


    But at the same time, on a very highbrow scale, you have Horkheimer and Adorno reflecting on the cost, so to speak, of all emancipative Actions: That they tend to destroyy themselfes!

    Marcuse as being the most romantic of them had the least to do with this kind of self-criticism of the enlighted thinker.

    But as it turned out, in the end, in his Permanace of Art he insists, that without taste, you can't exxpect to reach any goal of much importance. He fused the "gesture of a hippie-girl", a song of - ehem - Bob Dylan and Shakespeare and Proust as undisputable ingredients of any real progress.

    That's as far away from being politically correct as I can think.

    The same with Erich Fromm. He always claimed, that truth be spoken - and that there'd be no taboos as far as scientific discoveries or factual descriptions are concerned.

    I like what's happening on this site a lot. I'm even thrilled at times - and I admit, sometimes I have quite some fights with others from my peer-group about what's to despise as anti-thoughts and pseusdo-scientific progress without any meaning - and what's there to like and even admire about - Harpending, lets say. Or Steve Sailer.

    As far as Marcuse is concerned - I always thought, that he was flatout wrong about Freud.
    And I was was quite delighted when I discovered, that there was not only Erich fromm, who had a diffrent, and in my opinion much better understanding of Freud, but that there was Jürgen Habermas too, to make this point theoretically even stronger.

    That all three of them were/are members of the Frankfurt School makes this stuff interesting! I liked it as a teenager even, that they argued - against each other too - that's how this should always be (unfortunately, it isn't (to be continued...))...

  204. Anon says: • Disclaimer

    Bergson was supposedly a huge influence on arts and culture.

    Proust is taken seriously even by psychologists for his insights into memory and time.

    Eisenstein wasn’t only a film-maker but a very influential film theorist.

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  205. melendwyr says: • Website
    @Steve Sailer
    Major novelists like Roth and Updike are really, really smart. You can become a cult leader by being a second rate novelist like Rand or a fourth rate novelist like Hubbard, but being a first rate novelist is very hard.

    I’ve gotta disagree – much of the pre-Scientology Hubbard stuff is pretty good, particularly the shorter works, and overall his craft is considerably better than Rand, who developed some pretty serious problems by the later part of her career when she no longer felt the need for others’ advice or editing. (Oy.) There are good reasons why he was a respected SF author.

    I grant you that Hubbard turned out some garbage (like Stephen King, who wrote several terrible and long drug-fueled novels and has fantastic short story work and some respectable long works), and everything he wrote after starting a religion and realizing how profitable it was is terrible.

    In both cases, Rand and Hubbard, I think they really started to go downhill once they were surrounded by people who idolized them and never challenged their ideas. It’s really, really difficult to be one’s own worst critic, and intelligent criticism is absolutely necessary.

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  206. @Anon
    "I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as ‘Old Stickyfingers.’ "

    Well, if VISION OF JOHANNA is the result of sticky-fingering, we need more sticky-fingering.

    "If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you’d suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself."

    So, who wrote/played JUST LIKE A WOMAN for Dylan before he stole it?

    I think what the envious folkies are saying that they had some ideas, and Dylan used some of them, along with other ideas, as inspiration for his songs.

    Happens all the time in art.

    Opening scene of THE WILD BUNCH with ants and scorpions. Peckinpah got the idea from Emilio Fernandez who said that, as a child, he and his amigos would kill ants and scorpions that way when soldiers rode into town.

    There are various websites devoted to showing how one song was lifted from an earlier song. They’re fun, but they tend to be kind of underwhelming. In particular, the legend that Led Zeppelin plagiarized a lot of their hits seems like more of a myth.

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    • Replies: @ben tillman
    In particular, the legend that Led Zeppelin plagiarized a lot of their hits seems like more of a myth.

    I don't know about the old blues tunes, but it can't really be disputed that Zeppelin took the intro of Stairway to Heaven from Randy (Wolfe) California:

    http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/music/hear-stairway-heaven-v-s-taurus-article-1.2685650

    Skip to about 0:45 in Taurus, and there's no doubt.

    , @Reg Cæsar

    There are various websites devoted to showing how one song was lifted from an earlier song. They’re fun, but they tend to be kind of underwhelming
     
    Sigmund Spaeth was doing this ninety years ago.
  207. Dave Pinsen says: • Website
    @SimpleSong
    I don't know enough about Freud or Marx to comment, but I would agree with your assessment that Einstein was the real deal. But, I think his importance does get vastly overblown--there seems to be a belief that he was head and shoulders above everyone else and the greatest physicist ever. While certainly one of the greatest, I wouldn't put him as the greatest, and certainly not head and shoulders above everyone else.

    For example, the space time transformations used in relativity are not called the Einstein transformations--they're called the Lorentz transformations, because a physicist/mathematician H.A. Lorentz had already derived them 5-10 years before Einstein started publishing. Einstein provided a very clear, simple, derivation of them based one one principle (constant speed of light) and so his paper became hugely well known, but even if Einstein had never been around relativistic effects would have been fairly well sussed out in the early part of the 20th century.

    Likewise, many of his other publications were simply applying the recently developed statistical thermodynamics to interesting problems--for example I think you could put the work on Brownian motion and coherent radiation into this bucket. But statistical thermodynamics was developed by others in the late part of the 19th century, that was just cleanup work.

    General relativity (an update of Newton's gravitation) was an amazing and and original accomplishment, but again the math required (geodesics, metrics, etc.) had already been developed. Contrast this to someone like Newton, who not only developed his eponymous mechanics, but also developed the mathematical framework (calculus) that you need to properly describe his creation.

    Even if you restrict yourself to the 20th century, quantum mechanics was the real revolution during that period, and Einstein was pretty much a bit player in that. Without quantum mechanics, you don't have transistors or any other electronics (as well as a lot of other things.) Without general relativity? The only tech I can think of that requires that is the global positioning system.

    The odd thing about being a physics major is that everyone pushes Einstein as the avatar of the discipline, then you spend maybe 2 weeks a year on things he developed; about the same as someone like Boltzmann, who no one has ever heard of.

    Einstein’s position in popular culture benefited from him being a talented aphorist.

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    • Replies: @SimpleSong

    Einstein’s position in popular culture benefited from him being a talented aphorist.
     
    Definitely. A sort of friendly, avuncular, approachable persona, said some fairly anodyne things you could put on a poster and hang in a high school guidance counselor's office to inspire the youth and whatnot. Hence the pop-culture success.

    Maxwell or Newton or Faraday or Bohr or whomever made contributions of the same order of magnitude as Einstein; you can argue all day about who outranks whom, but they're all in the same ballpark. But if you ask an average person on the street, they are at least 1000 times more likely to know who Einstein is than, say, James Maxwell.
  208. syonredux says:
    @TZ
    The case of Freud himself, founder of 'psychoanalysis', is quite typical in this respect, for he never ceased to declare himself a materalist. One further remark: why is it that the principal representatives of the new tendencies, like Einstein in physics, Bergson in philosophy, Freud in psychology, and many others of less importance, are almost all of Jewish origin, unless it be because there is something involved that is closely bound up with the 'malefic' and dissolving aspect of nomadism when it is deviated, and because that aspect must inevitably predominate in Jews detached from their tradition?
    -René Guénon (The Reign of Quantity and the Signs of the Times)

    René Guénon (The Reign of Quantity and the Signs of the Times)

    There’s a guy that I simply cannot take seriously….

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  209. Buddwing says:

    A clinical psychology professor in my family who started clinical practice in the 1950′s told me that the real end of Freudianism was the advent of decent drug treatments for severe mental illness. It was incredibly frustrating to work with patients through talk therapy for months or years, only to have them suddenly redisplay destructive behaviors, but one just didn’t have that many alternatives. With drug therapies it was obvious that there was an organic basis to the problems seen and that delving into early childhood memories was pointless. Moreover, the distinction between neurotic patients and psychotic patients became obvious, so endless analysis of depressed patients of the kind shown in Woody Allen movies was clearly not on a continuum with dealing with manic behavior of severely bi-polar patients. By 1980, no one in Psych really believed in the Freudian model (as I remember one of his grad-students telling me at the time). The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Tom Wolfe talked about the discovery that lithium could help depressives was a shock to the Freudian orthodoxy.
    , @Desiderius

    The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.
     
    So college English departments are functioning sort of like an appendix of the cultural body, isolating the rot away from the healthy tissue.
  210. @Jim
    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.

    Popper also criticized Freudianism and psychoanalysis generally as empirically meaningless.

    Habermas has it the other way round: He criticized Freud for the theoretical inconsistency that lies at the basis of Freuds “Meta-Psychology” (Habermas). Habermas attacks Freud’s misconception of his own achievements. He shows, that Freud was not, what he thought he should and would be: A natural scientist.
    What Freud really was, he was the founder of a hermeneutic practise called psychoanalysis, which is aimed at straightening out misconceptions of oneself with the help of a patient and attentive “other” – the psychoanalyst.

    Therefor, Popper wasn’t completely wrong about Freud, but he was far away from being right.

    That’s one of the really groundbreaking pieces by Habermas and it’s only few pages long – see J. Habermas, Knowledge and Human Interests (1972 english transl.) - Freud’s misconception of himself as natural-scientist (my rough translation).

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  211. The book “Why Freud Was Wrong” by the late Richard Webster argued that Freud set out to found a religion, and that that religion was a disguised continuation of the Judaeo-Christian tradition.

    It is quite possible that the book, first published in 1995, played a part in Freud’s loss of popularity.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Why_Freud_Was_Wrong

    Read More
    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    At most it was a twist of the knife. Frank Cioffi was the earliest of the modern Freud critics but nobody paid him much heed until Crews and Esterson dismantled Freud.
  212. @Crawfurdmuir

    Interesting – but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
     
    Emancipation, but from what? Justice, but how defined?

    Marcuse's essay "Repressive Tolerance" (1965) argued that to tolerate certain types of expression was actually repressive to some persons or groups of persons in society. So, for example, suggestions that there might be innate inequalities between male and female, or between the white and negro, serve to repress women and blacks, and therefore tolerating the expression of such claims is itself repressive. The alternative to such "repressive tolerance" was "liberating tolerance."

    Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. As to the scope of this tolerance and intolerance: ... it would extend to the stage of action as well as of discussion and propaganda, of deed as well as of word.
     
    This is the intellectual justification of "political correctness," and a better example of the moral inversion of meaning that Orwell portrayed in 1984 could not be produced. It is seen in action today in the behavior of self-proclaimed anti-fascists whose mode of action is to dress in black clothing and to perpetrate physical mayhem against persons with whom they disagree (just like Mussolini's squadristi or Mosley's "biff boys"). A person called Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, mouthpiece for a "progressive" entity called the Partnership for Civil Justice, said without an apparent trace of historic awareness:

    "Dressing all in black is not illegal,” she adds, addressing charging documents’ description of the group as being “dressed similarly to one another” in mostly black clothing before marching as a “cohesive unit.”
     
    The courageous antifa type that sucker-punched Richard Spencer was, on top of this, wearing a mask. When W.E.B. DuBois wrote that "The kind of thing that men are afraid or ashamed to do openly, and by day, they accomplish secretly, masked, and at night," he was referring to the Ku Klux Klan. His censure could as well apply to the balaclava-wearing vandals of Inauguration Day, but they have carved out an exception for themselves based on their own moral vanity.

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don't know what those words mean any more.

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don’t know what those words mean any more.

    It’s just run-of-the-mill mendacity. The usual banality of evil. Don’t give it more credit than it deserves.

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  213. SFG says:
    @advancedatheist
    The Jews Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck invented cognitive-behavioral therapy, though apparently out of frustration with the failure of psychoanalysis to help their respective patients.

    Perhaps CBT works better because it has roots in gentile wisdom traditions like Stoicism and Buddhism.

    Yup, but I don’t need to turn every comment into a fight over the Tribe. The stuff actually is pretty useful from what I’ve seen.

    I think Ellis or one of his disciples actually came out with a Christian version of some of the stuff using appropriate Bible verses for use with Christian patients.

    Ellis used to have a workshop on Friday nights at his institute in Manhattan where he’d show off his philosophy/therapy to audience members. Chasing after a psychologically-minded girl a long time ago, I went once. The guy was like your sarcastic old uncle (‘all your thoughts are SCREWED UP’), and made fun of psychoanalysis a few times.

    I didn’t get the girl, but it was a nice piece of intellectual history to be witness to.

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  214. @Buddwing
    A clinical psychology professor in my family who started clinical practice in the 1950's told me that the real end of Freudianism was the advent of decent drug treatments for severe mental illness. It was incredibly frustrating to work with patients through talk therapy for months or years, only to have them suddenly redisplay destructive behaviors, but one just didn't have that many alternatives. With drug therapies it was obvious that there was an organic basis to the problems seen and that delving into early childhood memories was pointless. Moreover, the distinction between neurotic patients and psychotic patients became obvious, so endless analysis of depressed patients of the kind shown in Woody Allen movies was clearly not on a continuum with dealing with manic behavior of severely bi-polar patients. By 1980, no one in Psych really believed in the Freudian model (as I remember one of his grad-students telling me at the time). The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.

    Tom Wolfe talked about the discovery that lithium could help depressives was a shock to the Freudian orthodoxy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Buddwing
    The work of Elizabeth Loftus in roughly the period from 1975-2000 destroyed the idea of repressed memories, one of the last holdouts of Freudian thinking. This helped end the witch-hunts regarding supposed recovered memories of childhood sexual trauma.

    I took a course on Nabokov in college and his dismissive attitude towards "the Viennese quack" helped cement my anti-Freudian inclinations.
    , @Jack D
    Medical orthodoxy is often completely wrong. For decades stomach ulcers were believed to be due to stress. "You'll give me ulcers" is what people used to say to their kids who were giving them a hard time. There was a young doctor in Australia who theorized that they were mostly due to bacterial infection by H. pylori and could be easily treated with antibiotics but he was ridiculed by the medical establishment - he hadn't gone to Harvard or Yale. Everyone KNEW that bacteria could not survive in the harsh acidic environment of the stomach. He was right and they were wrong.
    , @Anonymous
    Quote from Bonfire of the Vanities:

    Sherman didn’t even know how to speculate. His interest in psychoanalytic theory ended one day at Yale when Rawlie Thorpe had referred to it as “a Jewish science” (precisely the attitude that had most troubled and infuriated Freud seventy-five years earlier).
     
  215. @Steve Sailer
    So Jane Austen would have been a better guide to understanding Freud's patients' problems?

    Maybe is Austen were writing in the 1930′s.

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  216. @Dr. Miller
    That's a little bit like Stevie Wonder talking about colors. Since hardly anyone of you has any real clue about what Freud had actually said this discussion will be unintentionally funny again. First of all, Freud's "early" work is pretty brilliant, for the time he was working (BTW, Freud was actually pro-German and wanted Austria to become part of Prussia-led Germany). He found out that an awful lot of his patients had repressed memories of sexual abuse. He was on a good track back then but as soon as he was revealing his findings to society he suddenly experienced vast resistance and then at some point backed down and came up with assigning those memories as "fantasies". Austrian society did not want to hear about that a large portion of its members were victims and/or perpetrators of sexual abuse!

    Secondly, psychoanalysis was actually the main opposition to blank slate behaviorism that you guys despise so much, until the 70s (and Konrad Lorenz, but modern sociobiologists and HDB people do not really like him, and Ardrey) - most psychoanalysts never denied inborn human differences. But most of you HDB guys are just as weird as blank slaters to me. You honestly think that childhood abuse, neglect and terror does not disturb you for life?

    Thirdly, psychoanalysis is NOT dead and is now merged more and more with other forms of therapy. That there was too much dogma in the past is true, but there is certainly a lot of truth in it. It's more an art than a science, true, that is why it is often handled badly. It is harder to do than putting some data into SPSS. You need high intuition for human emotions and high intelligence and even historical knowledge to understand the "climate" of the times a patient was raised (or his parents). Obviously, most of you autistically-inclined guys here would have major problems with understanding "feelings" and "emotions" since everything is "alpha male fucking the girl" Conan-The-Barbarian narcissistic fantasy. Human evolutionary psychology is mostly a failure at this point, you must be honest about that, it doesn't explain mental illness in a satisfying matter - and not even basic human behavior. Since we are just starting to begin to understand the basics of brain physiology and so on, we are also just at the start to understand the true meaning of memories and the subconscious. With the "brain split" into left and right, the triumph of the left side in the Western world and culture and the problems that result out of that, we are approaching a field much more interesting than allele frequencies and r-strategists (which can be a part of that, but not the major one).

    You honestly think that childhood abuse, neglect and terror does not disturb you for life?

    That’s a strawman. In the words of Judith Rich Harris herself, rejecting the nurture assumption doesn’t preclude certain environments that are so horrible, no one could come out of them intact.

    Human evolutionary psychology is mostly a failure at this point, you must be honest about that, it doesn’t explain mental illness in a satisfying matter – and not even basic human behavior.

    Evolutionary biology, of which evo-psych is a branch, is at least evidence-based and self-correcting. Whatever its deficiencies at this point, for now it remains a far superior alternative to the anti-science failures of sociology and social psychology in understanding human behavior.

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  217. @Buddwing
    A clinical psychology professor in my family who started clinical practice in the 1950's told me that the real end of Freudianism was the advent of decent drug treatments for severe mental illness. It was incredibly frustrating to work with patients through talk therapy for months or years, only to have them suddenly redisplay destructive behaviors, but one just didn't have that many alternatives. With drug therapies it was obvious that there was an organic basis to the problems seen and that delving into early childhood memories was pointless. Moreover, the distinction between neurotic patients and psychotic patients became obvious, so endless analysis of depressed patients of the kind shown in Woody Allen movies was clearly not on a continuum with dealing with manic behavior of severely bi-polar patients. By 1980, no one in Psych really believed in the Freudian model (as I remember one of his grad-students telling me at the time). The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.

    The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.

    So college English departments are functioning sort of like an appendix of the cultural body, isolating the rot away from the healthy tissue.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Buddwing

    So college English departments are functioning sort of like an appendix of the cultural body, isolating the rot away from the healthy tissue.
     
    I thought that was the liver. The appendix may preserve gut flora during bouts of diarrhea, according to some. The function of English departments is at present unknown.
  218. utu says:
    @candid_observer
    I don't see much of analogy between the situation of Jews before, say, the nineteenth century, and that of blacks before they made their way into professional sports. Blacks just weren't allowed, so of course they weren't represented in professional sports until afterwards -- there's nothing to explain there.

    But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?

    There are any number of gentile scientists who lacked any real formal education in math or science and yet, seemingly because they couldn't stop themselves from pursuing the subjects, in the end achieved great things. Some of these scientists/mathematicians managed to do this despite having to make a living at other things. If you read about the lives of, say, George Green, Michael Farady, Oliver Heaviside, Nathaniel Bowditch, or for that matter Ben Franklin, you get the strong sense that these were men who were determined to learn everything they could about a subject that fascinated them, despite their lack of formal education or independent means. I'm not sure I can think of a Jewish equivalent -- though perhaps Spinoza, albeit not a scientist, comes closest.

    And it's also insufficient, I think, to say that Jews only appreciated Talmudic studies as an avocation. Many of the gentile "amateur" scientists, including those I just mentioned, seemed to be driven to do their science or math at the expense of everything that might naturally bring them honor and appreciation -- certainly many of us know STEM people who appear to be so motivated.

    Another thing that strikes me as quite peculiar is how little mathematics Jews seemed to have developed even to do the sort of work for which they were uniquely employed, namely as money lenders. As is now evident, there are all manner of issues in mathematics that arise in such calculations, such as probability and risk assessment, and a need for calculus to understand what's going on at a higher level. So far as I know, none of this got developed. I find that very strange and puzzling, and wonder what, exactly, the obstacle was.

    “But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?”

    Very good question. Was living in pre-emancipation ghettos really so oppressive or so fulfilling?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Jack D
    It was a self contained world - how may Amish mathematicians are there? What prevents an Amishman from picking up a math book?
  219. @AnotherGuessModel
    No worries, JudithButlerism is still going strong.

    “judithButlerism”

    Now there’s a scary religion. If you haven’t read up on her lately, then you’re due a real treat. Yikes! A JC English class that my son didn’t wind up taking had her as assigned reading. Man, education is really hurting these days.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AnotherGuessModel
    If you haven’t read up on her lately, then you’re due a real treat.

    I wondered, what batsplit-crazy proclamation did Butler make now, for glassy-eyed feminist scholars to lap up uncritically? But no, it turns out this had nothing to do with her stately contributions to Gender Theory. We can probably agree that the squatter was out of bounds, but her threats to destroy his reputation are outrageous. And to think, this is about an issue outside of academia! Imagine how ruthlessly she must have exploited her position of power to threaten, abuse, and destroy the careers of people who dared cross her as a scholar. This incident goes a long way in showing how academic hopefuls who don't toe the party line are purged from academia. Ugh.

  220. There does seem to be a trend in psychology for Jewish psychologists to focus more on verbally-based therapy (with varying levels of success). In contrast, gentile psychologists tend to be more interested in non-verbal therapy, such as creative visualisation and brain-body therapies, or understanding dysfunctional behaviour through animal studies and evolutionary psychology. Not sure if this applies at all levels of the field, but it does seem to be apparent among those who publish popular books on the subject.

    This link suggests Jews make good therapy patients:

    https://psmag.com/why-jews-make-good-therapy-patients-a7505d574aeb#.k52drkdp1

    Hence, it could be that less verbal, more visual and more self-effacing whites prefer less verbally orientated therapy.

    Read More
    • Replies: @SFG
    Might have a point there. CBT as I've seen it explained is usually quite verbal, almost like unpacking syllogisms.
    , @Autochthon
    Literally every single Jew I've ever known – and I am a recovering lawyer, so that's one Hell of a lot of Jews! – has had a therapist. I'm not exaggerating. I've known maybe three or four gentiles with one.

    Do Jews more readily do this stuff of just more readily admit it? Are they seeking attention by seeing a therapist, or by telling others they do so, or both? I do also observe a heck of a lot more neurosis among Jews, yet less actual mental problems. Thus my theory about it as an attention-seeking behaviour; a kind of Munchausen syndrome, as it were.

    After all, they do like obsessing over how unique and special and tormented they are as a people, so it follows thet would do so as individuals as well....
  221. @Dave Pinsen
    That's essentially what the gays said to get homosexuality taken out of the DSM.

    I don’t know if Steve has already handled that topic, but it could probably use a refresher. Clearly there is something wrong with homosexuals, but whether it’s physical, mental, spiritual, or a mixture is a pretty good one to hash out in this forum.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    I think transgression is a sign of something wrong, but with respect to the non-transgressive gays, they seem pretty normal. My girlfriend's former boss who you wouldn't guess was gay from appearance or mannerisms seemed to have as normal a life as anyone otherwise. He was in a monogamous relationship, worked a high-level job, no craziness, etc.
  222. @Steve Sailer
    So Jane Austen would have been a better guide to understanding Freud's patients' problems?

    Yes, that’s very well put.

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  223. Karl says:

    hey guys, didja see that column in _Yeshiva World News_ entitled, “Baseball Statistics as a Gentile Delusion” ??

    Read More
  224. @Crawfurdmuir

    Interesting – but the Franfurt thinkers were always about emancipation and justice and not only about lifestyles.
     
    Emancipation, but from what? Justice, but how defined?

    Marcuse's essay "Repressive Tolerance" (1965) argued that to tolerate certain types of expression was actually repressive to some persons or groups of persons in society. So, for example, suggestions that there might be innate inequalities between male and female, or between the white and negro, serve to repress women and blacks, and therefore tolerating the expression of such claims is itself repressive. The alternative to such "repressive tolerance" was "liberating tolerance."

    Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left. As to the scope of this tolerance and intolerance: ... it would extend to the stage of action as well as of discussion and propaganda, of deed as well as of word.
     
    This is the intellectual justification of "political correctness," and a better example of the moral inversion of meaning that Orwell portrayed in 1984 could not be produced. It is seen in action today in the behavior of self-proclaimed anti-fascists whose mode of action is to dress in black clothing and to perpetrate physical mayhem against persons with whom they disagree (just like Mussolini's squadristi or Mosley's "biff boys"). A person called Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, mouthpiece for a "progressive" entity called the Partnership for Civil Justice, said without an apparent trace of historic awareness:

    "Dressing all in black is not illegal,” she adds, addressing charging documents’ description of the group as being “dressed similarly to one another” in mostly black clothing before marching as a “cohesive unit.”
     
    The courageous antifa type that sucker-punched Richard Spencer was, on top of this, wearing a mask. When W.E.B. DuBois wrote that "The kind of thing that men are afraid or ashamed to do openly, and by day, they accomplish secretly, masked, and at night," he was referring to the Ku Klux Klan. His censure could as well apply to the balaclava-wearing vandals of Inauguration Day, but they have carved out an exception for themselves based on their own moral vanity.

    If this be emancipation and justice, I don't know what those words mean any more.

    The Frankfurt School was – and still is – about worker’s rights, women’s lib, civil rights, affirmative action even, as a compensation of past unjustices.

    But at the same time, on a very highbrow scale, you have Horkheimer and Adorno reflecting on the cost, so to speak, of all emancipative Actions: That they tend to destroyy themselfes!

    Marcuse as being the most romantic of them had the least to do with this kind of self-criticism of the enlighted thinker.

    But as it turned out, in the end, in his Permanace of Art he insists, that without taste, you can’t exxpect to reach any goal of much importance. He fused the “gesture of a hippie-girl”, a song of – ehem – Bob Dylan and Shakespeare and Proust as undisputable ingredients of any real progress.

    That’s as far away from being politically correct as I can think.

    The same with Erich Fromm. He always claimed, that truth be spoken – and that there’d be no taboos as far as scientific discoveries or factual descriptions are concerned.

    I like what’s happening on this site a lot. I’m even thrilled at times – and I admit, sometimes I have quite some fights with others from my peer-group about what’s to despise as anti-thoughts and pseusdo-scientific progress without any meaning – and what’s there to like and even admire about – Harpending, lets say. Or Steve Sailer.

    As far as Marcuse is concerned – I always thought, that he was flatout wrong about Freud.
    And I was was quite delighted when I discovered, that there was not only Erich fromm, who had a diffrent, and in my opinion much better understanding of Freud, but that there was Jürgen Habermas too, to make this point theoretically even stronger.

    That all three of them were/are members of the Frankfurt School makes this stuff interesting! I liked it as a teenager even, that they argued – against each other too – that’s how this should always be (unfortunately, it isn’t (to be continued…))…

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  225. Jack D says:
    @SimpleSong
    I don't know enough about Freud or Marx to comment, but I would agree with your assessment that Einstein was the real deal. But, I think his importance does get vastly overblown--there seems to be a belief that he was head and shoulders above everyone else and the greatest physicist ever. While certainly one of the greatest, I wouldn't put him as the greatest, and certainly not head and shoulders above everyone else.

    For example, the space time transformations used in relativity are not called the Einstein transformations--they're called the Lorentz transformations, because a physicist/mathematician H.A. Lorentz had already derived them 5-10 years before Einstein started publishing. Einstein provided a very clear, simple, derivation of them based one one principle (constant speed of light) and so his paper became hugely well known, but even if Einstein had never been around relativistic effects would have been fairly well sussed out in the early part of the 20th century.

    Likewise, many of his other publications were simply applying the recently developed statistical thermodynamics to interesting problems--for example I think you could put the work on Brownian motion and coherent radiation into this bucket. But statistical thermodynamics was developed by others in the late part of the 19th century, that was just cleanup work.

    General relativity (an update of Newton's gravitation) was an amazing and and original accomplishment, but again the math required (geodesics, metrics, etc.) had already been developed. Contrast this to someone like Newton, who not only developed his eponymous mechanics, but also developed the mathematical framework (calculus) that you need to properly describe his creation.

    Even if you restrict yourself to the 20th century, quantum mechanics was the real revolution during that period, and Einstein was pretty much a bit player in that. Without quantum mechanics, you don't have transistors or any other electronics (as well as a lot of other things.) Without general relativity? The only tech I can think of that requires that is the global positioning system.

    The odd thing about being a physics major is that everyone pushes Einstein as the avatar of the discipline, then you spend maybe 2 weeks a year on things he developed; about the same as someone like Boltzmann, who no one has ever heard of.

    Newton had the benefit of having lived at a time when math had not developed much since the Greeks, so he was in a better position to not only do the physics but invent the math underlying it. By Einstein’s time, a lot more had been done mathematically so it was harder for him to invent a new mathematics. But there is no doubt that Einstein was a better conceptualizer than he was a mathematician . He’s the greatest physicist of the 2oth century, not the greatest mathematician. A double threat guy like Newton is a once in a millennium phenomenon and it gets harder all the time as the scope of human knowledge increases so there are fewer unplowed fields.

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    • Replies: @Desiderius

    there are fewer unplowed fields
     
    Every generation believes that to be the case. Some turn out to have been mistaken.
  226. @Karl
    hey guys, didja see that column in _Yeshiva World News_ entitled, "Baseball Statistics as a Gentile Delusion" ??

    Pretty much.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anon
    Hmm, here I'd thought one of the major popularizers of baseball stats escapism was Daniel Okrent, a media individual to whom gefilte fish or Chanukah geld might not be entirely foreign, if considerations of Hebrosity attain. Of course I'd always defer to the master on comprehensive, authoritative statements about the "real stars" in that consequential and refined field of intellectual endeavor, baseball stats.

    p.s. How long ago did you discover that psychoanalytic prestige petered out completely after the Mad Men era? I remember Hitchcock shoehorning Freud jokes into every film. Rip Van Sailer...

  227. Buddwing says:
    @Steve Sailer
    Tom Wolfe talked about the discovery that lithium could help depressives was a shock to the Freudian orthodoxy.

    The work of Elizabeth Loftus in roughly the period from 1975-2000 destroyed the idea of repressed memories, one of the last holdouts of Freudian thinking. This helped end the witch-hunts regarding supposed recovered memories of childhood sexual trauma.

    I took a course on Nabokov in college and his dismissive attitude towards “the Viennese quack” helped cement my anti-Freudian inclinations.

    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    Repressed memory was always a bonkers concept to me. You remember it, but you don't. Something else keeps it for you, but not in your memory. Or not in the part of your memory you can remember. But we still call them memories, anyway. They are at once both memories and not memories. Un-memories.

    Doctors can pull them out by barraging you with questions, and if you deny that any such thing happened that's just more reason to believe it did. Which sounds awfully convenient should doctors be making it up. But don't worry about that, just take out your wallet.

  228. @SFG
    Kubrick rarely made movies on Jewish themes, probably accounting for his widespread popularity. He leaned to the left (Dr. Strangelove, Full Metal Jacket) but wasn't totally out there.

    I would disagree, Dr. Strangelove is most definitely not a liberal film, a lot of liberals at the time the film came out were horrified that that he was making fun of nuclear war, unlike it’s contemporary competitors, such as Fail-Safe and Seven Days in May which were in fact is very liberal in their politics. Martin Scorsese ( Who is on the left politically ) has said that he knew plenty of Goldwater Republicans he went to school with who loved Dr. Strangelove as much as he did, that liking or disliking the film was largely generational. Older people regardless of politics hated it, whereas people like himself who were younger, regardless of politics loved it. Kubrick was also apparently worried that American film critics would think Full Metal Jacket was too pro-war and pro-military when he finished it.

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    • Replies: @SFG
    OK. He's arguing that generals and military men in general are trigger happy--he has a little fun at the expense of liberal President Merkin Muffley but in general military men are the bad guys. He has a little more nuance than liberals are allowed these days. Full Metal Jacket shows the dehumanization of soldiers in a war zone, but it also shows how they get that way and why they have to be that way.

    He's a liberal, but not a stupid one.
  229. Jack D says:
    @Steve Sailer
    Tom Wolfe talked about the discovery that lithium could help depressives was a shock to the Freudian orthodoxy.

    Medical orthodoxy is often completely wrong. For decades stomach ulcers were believed to be due to stress. “You’ll give me ulcers” is what people used to say to their kids who were giving them a hard time. There was a young doctor in Australia who theorized that they were mostly due to bacterial infection by H. pylori and could be easily treated with antibiotics but he was ridiculed by the medical establishment – he hadn’t gone to Harvard or Yale. Everyone KNEW that bacteria could not survive in the harsh acidic environment of the stomach. He was right and they were wrong.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    About 10% of all jokes on TV in the late 1960s were, by my highly scientific estimate, about how my mother-in-law was giving me an ulcer.
  230. Jack D says:
    @utu
    "But what prevented pre-nineteenth century Jews from picking up a book on geometry or algebra or trigonometry or calculus and studying it, becoming fascinated with it, and producing important theories and theorems of their own?"

    Very good question. Was living in pre-emancipation ghettos really so oppressive or so fulfilling?

    It was a self contained world – how may Amish mathematicians are there? What prevents an Amishman from picking up a math book?

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    Neal Stephenson's Anathem imagines a world where scientists and mathematicians are confined to monasteries and prohibited from most technology. But they still develop advanced math and philosophy.
  231. Buddwing says:
    @Desiderius

    The whole raft of ideas drifted out of the Psych department and washed up in the English department where its degraded remains can still be found.
     
    So college English departments are functioning sort of like an appendix of the cultural body, isolating the rot away from the healthy tissue.

    So college English departments are functioning sort of like an appendix of the cultural body, isolating the rot away from the healthy tissue.

    I thought that was the liver. The appendix may preserve gut flora during bouts of diarrhea, according to some. The function of English departments is at present unknown.

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    • Replies: @Desiderius
    Thanks for the correction - that sounds right. So liver it is - no wonder they have such poor taste.
  232. @syonredux

    The greatest poet of the English language wrote an elegy for Freud,
     
    Auden was very good, but I don't think that I would place him above Robert Frost, Donne, Tennyson, Milton, .....

    Art is subjective, and ranking artists (unless for sheer amusement and friendly debate) is nearly always an inconclusive waste of time. Sure, it’s pretty clear Wolfgang Mozart was a better composer than is Taylor Swift, but even then, their idioms are so wholly different the comparison is arguable. (Quaere: Is Joshua Bell or Charlie Daniels the better with their instrument?) When one is discussing inarguable masters, though, things become very slippery and subject to taste, specialisation in techniques or material, and so on.

    Bearing all that in mind, I’d posit that, with the possible exception of Milton, Shakespeare was the greatest poet working in English. (His poems are all plays and sonnets, though, and many therefore don’t even think of him as a poet, apropos of my previous paragraph….)

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    • Replies: @syonredux

    When one is discussing inarguable masters, though, things become very slippery and subject to taste, specialisation in techniques or material, and so on.
     
    Which is more-or-less my position. Once a certain level is reached, judgement becomes increasingly subjective. For example, who was the greatest Anglo novelist in the 19th century? Henry James?Charles Dickens? Melville? George Eliot?
    , @Dave Pinsen
    Honestly, who reads Shakespeare's sonnets today? Or Milton's epic poems? Yeah, "Hurled headlong flaming..." is powerful stuff, but when's the last time you read Paradise Lost?

    Syon's toff pretensions aside, a sign of art's greatness is that it lasts. In that sense, one could argue it's too soon to call Auden the greatest poet, and if Syon had done that, I would have conceded the point, and retreated to calling him the greatest poet in English of the 20th Century. But given the scope of 20th Century poetry (before it went to hell), that's close to the same thing in my book.
  233. ChrisZ says:
    @guest
    Wittgenstein had him as a mythologist, which I think is better. He has Freud's "unconscious" renamed Mr. I-Don't-Know, which I love.

    Freud's supposedly great insights into human motivation were more often plain wrong than insightful. Though they were occasionally insightful, so I can see why novelists, dramatists, and poets made use of him. But the Freudian Age of Fiction was not a great one, and especially the "psychological novels" and psychological literature in general during this period sucks. Ugh, how many great writers were pulled down into the muck. And not just muck, but false muck.

    There is a book about literature of the previous century with a title I love, and which sums up its view of man: trousered apes.

    Thanks for the interesting reply, Guest. Those “psychological novelists” would be among the “lesser intellectual lights” I mentioned, and I agree with your assessment of their awfulness.

    But Freud himself was a writer of power and even grace. Though many of his ideas turned out wrong, and all are now old hat, his literary insight can still be riveting, and must have seemed revelatory at the time.

    And Freud was, of course, a civilized and learned man–however much he may be blamed for some of the ills that have eroded civilization and learning in later times. I’ve been a critic of Freud and a skeptic of his method for a long time. But as his reputation has declined I’ve found a soft spot in my heart for him, especially when I compare him to the vulgarity, ignorance, and decadence of the cultural “authorities” of our own day.

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  234. @James N. Kennett
    The book "Why Freud Was Wrong" by the late Richard Webster argued that Freud set out to found a religion, and that that religion was a disguised continuation of the Judaeo-Christian tradition.

    It is quite possible that the book, first published in 1995, played a part in Freud's loss of popularity.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Why_Freud_Was_Wrong

    At most it was a twist of the knife. Frank Cioffi was the earliest of the modern Freud critics but nobody paid him much heed until Crews and Esterson dismantled Freud.

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  235. Jack D says:
    @guest
    What is a "disease" when it comes to the mind? I don't know enough about schizophrenia in particular, but if it's like other mental so-called diseases, it is a disease only in a metaphorical sense. If it doesn't have bodily causes, objective diagnosis, and prescribed treatments, why are we using the same word as we use to describe influenza, for instance? Most of mental health is in Fantasy Land regarding diagnosis and treatment, and that's not to even touch upon the play-acting doctor and patient participate in which we call therapy.

    Obviously, there's something wrong with people who have mental "diseases." But is the existence of some underlying something enough to say doctors aren't inventing diseases? Is the disease the thing wrong, or is it the diagnosis? To put it another way, if I come up with a false explanation for something affecting a person and call it a disease, isn't that inventing a disease even if there actually is something wrong with them?

    There is absolutely no doubt that schizophrenia is an actual disease of the brain just as much as any other clinical disease. Hallucinations, delusions, disorganized thinking – these are not the product of normal brains (and have nothing to do with how you were treated as a kid). Certain drugs have effects that mimic the symptoms of schizophrenia, and other drugs relieve its symptoms, which indicates that it is due to abnormal brain chemistry involving various neurotransmitters (dopamine. serotonin, etc.) Your nervous system doesn’t run purely on electricity like a computer – it’s a chemical computer and if the chemicals that send the signals are scrambled then the messages will be scrambled too. There are other hints – for example, virtual all schizophrenics are smokers (for reason not yet understood but maybe the nicotine relieves them in some way).

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    • Replies: @anonguy

    There are other hints – for example, virtual all schizophrenics are smokers
     
    And so are all crazy girlfriends.

    Coincidence?
    , @guest
    If that's true (and like I said, I don't know enough about it), then it's a physical disease like all the others. Mental disease, on the other hand, is a weird and not well thought through concept.
    , @anonguy

    There is absolutely no doubt that schizophrenia is an actual disease of the brain just as much as any other clinical disease.
     
    Jack D is absolutely correct here. I'm as much as skeptic of the DSM as anyone, my opinion is that they simply and cynically syndromize the ends of the bell curves of various human behaviors.

    However, schizophrenia has documented genetic linkage and observable brain changes at a minimum. Some suggest a viral interplay with a genetic susceptibility. I don't discount any of it, I hardly think we know all there is to know about the human mind.

    It is also unclear if all things labeled schizophrenia are actually the same phenomenon.

    The propensity for schizophrenia may grant other benefits, such as sickle cell anemia is associated with malaria resistance.

    I've had two close friends become schizophrenics. Both were notably intelligent, insightful, and creative thinkers prior to the onset of their illness. And in their madness, I could see, quite exaggeratedly, what had made them such compelling people before they went mad.

    , @Melendwyr
    All mental states have underlying 'organic' causes. It doesn't follow that any given condition is the result of malfunctioning hardware.

    With schizophrenia, we have no idea whether there's a single cause, many different conditions lumped under one term, one condition with multiple causes, multiple conditions with multiple causes, or why any one symptom is present or absent in any person.

    Blaming brain chemistry is absurdly simplistic, which is probably why it's brought out so often as an 'explanation'.
  236. SFG says:
    @unpc downunder
    There does seem to be a trend in psychology for Jewish psychologists to focus more on verbally-based therapy (with varying levels of success). In contrast, gentile psychologists tend to be more interested in non-verbal therapy, such as creative visualisation and brain-body therapies, or understanding dysfunctional behaviour through animal studies and evolutionary psychology. Not sure if this applies at all levels of the field, but it does seem to be apparent among those who publish popular books on the subject.

    This link suggests Jews make good therapy patients:

    https://psmag.com/why-jews-make-good-therapy-patients-a7505d574aeb#.k52drkdp1

    Hence, it could be that less verbal, more visual and more self-effacing whites prefer less verbally orientated therapy.

    Might have a point there. CBT as I’ve seen it explained is usually quite verbal, almost like unpacking syllogisms.

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  237. SFG says:
    @Unladen Swallow
    I would disagree, Dr. Strangelove is most definitely not a liberal film, a lot of liberals at the time the film came out were horrified that that he was making fun of nuclear war, unlike it's contemporary competitors, such as Fail-Safe and Seven Days in May which were in fact is very liberal in their politics. Martin Scorsese ( Who is on the left politically ) has said that he knew plenty of Goldwater Republicans he went to school with who loved Dr. Strangelove as much as he did, that liking or disliking the film was largely generational. Older people regardless of politics hated it, whereas people like himself who were younger, regardless of politics loved it. Kubrick was also apparently worried that American film critics would think Full Metal Jacket was too pro-war and pro-military when he finished it.

    OK. He’s arguing that generals and military men in general are trigger happy–he has a little fun at the expense of liberal President Merkin Muffley but in general military men are the bad guys. He has a little more nuance than liberals are allowed these days. Full Metal Jacket shows the dehumanization of soldiers in a war zone, but it also shows how they get that way and why they have to be that way.

    He’s a liberal, but not a stupid one.

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  238. Dumbo says:
    @Anon
    "I did some research on Dylan recently and discovered that among the folk-brethern of his generation he became known as ‘Old Stickyfingers.’ "

    Well, if VISION OF JOHANNA is the result of sticky-fingering, we need more sticky-fingering.

    "If you working on a song and happened to be dumb enough to play it for him (as many awe-struck folkies did back in the 1960s), you’d suddenly find it popping up on Dylan record as a Dylan-written song before you could record it yourself."

    So, who wrote/played JUST LIKE A WOMAN for Dylan before he stole it?

    I think what the envious folkies are saying that they had some ideas, and Dylan used some of them, along with other ideas, as inspiration for his songs.

    Happens all the time in art.

    Opening scene of THE WILD BUNCH with ants and scorpions. Peckinpah got the idea from Emilio Fernandez who said that, as a child, he and his amigos would kill ants and scorpions that way when soldiers rode into town.

    “Happens all the time in art”

    Yep. Shakespeare also “stole” most of his material (not that Dylan can be compared in any way to Shakespeare, it’s just an example) from other sources.

    As they say, “good writers borrow, great writers steal.” I think T. S. Eliot said that, or maybe he stole it from somebody else.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    In the end, it's not about the elements but the arrangement.

    A chef may take ingredients from others, but the real magic is in the combination.

    And even slightest variations can make all the difference. Consider how a slight change in the DNA can turn an ape into human.
  239. syonredux says:
    @Autochthon
    Art is subjective, and ranking artists (unless for sheer amusement and friendly debate) is nearly always an inconclusive waste of time. Sure, it's pretty clear Wolfgang Mozart was a better composer than is Taylor Swift, but even then, their idioms are so wholly different the comparison is arguable. (Quaere: Is Joshua Bell or Charlie Daniels the better with their instrument?) When one is discussing inarguable masters, though, things become very slippery and subject to taste, specialisation in techniques or material, and so on.

    Bearing all that in mind, I'd posit that, with the possible exception of Milton, Shakespeare was the greatest poet working in English. (His poems are all plays and sonnets, though, and many therefore don't even think of him as a poet, apropos of my previous paragraph....)

    When one is discussing inarguable masters, though, things become very slippery and subject to taste, specialisation in techniques or material, and so on.

    Which is more-or-less my position. Once a certain level is reached, judgement becomes increasingly subjective. For example, who was the greatest Anglo novelist in the 19th century? Henry James?Charles Dickens? Melville? George Eliot?

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    • Replies: @anonguy
    I think Melville is the greatest writer ever.

    He is to prose what Bach is to melody.
  240. @Formerly CARealist
    "judithButlerism"

    Now there's a scary religion. If you haven't read up on her lately, then you're due a real treat. Yikes! A JC English class that my son didn't wind up taking had her as assigned reading. Man, education is really hurting these days.

    If you haven’t read up on her lately, then you’re due a real treat.

    I wondered, what batsplit-crazy proclamation did Butler make now, for glassy-eyed feminist scholars to lap up uncritically? But no, it turns out this had nothing to do with her stately contributions to Gender Theory. We can probably agree that the squatter was out of bounds, but her threats to destroy his reputation are outrageous. And to think, this is about an issue outside of academia! Imagine how ruthlessly she must have exploited her position of power to threaten, abuse, and destroy the careers of people who dared cross her as a scholar. This incident goes a long way in showing how academic hopefuls who don’t toe the party line are purged from academia. Ugh.

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  241. @SimpleSong
    I don't know enough about Freud or Marx to comment, but I would agree with your assessment that Einstein was the real deal. But, I think his importance does get vastly overblown--there seems to be a belief that he was head and shoulders above everyone else and the greatest physicist ever. While certainly one of the greatest, I wouldn't put him as the greatest, and certainly not head and shoulders above everyone else.

    For example, the space time transformations used in relativity are not called the Einstein transformations--they're called the Lorentz transformations, because a physicist/mathematician H.A. Lorentz had already derived them 5-10 years before Einstein started publishing. Einstein provided a very clear, simple, derivation of them based one one principle (constant speed of light) and so his paper became hugely well known, but even if Einstein had never been around relativistic effects would have been fairly well sussed out in the early part of the 20th century.

    Likewise, many of his other publications were simply applying the recently developed statistical thermodynamics to interesting problems--for example I think you could put the work on Brownian motion and coherent radiation into this bucket. But statistical thermodynamics was developed by others in the late part of the 19th century, that was just cleanup work.

    General relativity (an update of Newton's gravitation) was an amazing and and original accomplishment, but again the math required (geodesics, metrics, etc.) had already been developed. Contrast this to someone like Newton, who not only developed his eponymous mechanics, but also developed the mathematical framework (calculus) that you need to properly describe his creation.

    Even if you restrict yourself to the 20th century, quantum mechanics was the real revolution during that period, and Einstein was pretty much a bit player in that. Without quantum mechanics, you don't have transistors or any other electronics (as well as a lot of other things.) Without general relativity? The only tech I can think of that requires that is the global positioning system.

    The odd thing about being a physics major is that everyone pushes Einstein as the avatar of the discipline, then you spend maybe 2 weeks a year on things he developed; about the same as someone like Boltzmann, who no one has ever heard of.

    Don’t forget that David Hilbert arrived at a theory of general relativity at very nearly the same time as Einstein. They were in communication with each other, and there is dispute about who influenced whom.

    Einstein is by far the better known, I suspect, largely as the result of his association in popular consciousness with the development of the atomic bomb. In reality he had little more to do with it than lending his signature to a letter to a President Roosevelt that had been written by Leo Szilard, recommending that the United States commence a nuclear research program.

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    • Replies: @honesthughgrant

    Einstein is by far the better known, I suspect, largely as the result of his association in popular consciousness with the development of the atomic bomb.
     
    Yes, Time magazine called Einstein the "Man of the Century" and had him associated with the A-bomb. And a 1945 Time magazine cover had Einstein and an A-bomb on it.

    I read Time's article and still couldn't figure out why Einstein was the "Man of the Century". I'm sure his theory of relativity has had a big impact on our lives - although I'm not sure why.
    , @syonredux

    Don’t forget that David Hilbert arrived at a theory of general relativity at very nearly the same time as Einstein. They were in communication with each other, and there is dispute about who influenced whom.
     
    Competition can be useful as a spur:

    By 1907 Einstein had framed the fundamentals of the theory of gravity, but then struggled for nearly 8 years with a confounding problem of putting the theory into final form.[38] By early summer 1915, Hilbert's interest in physics had focused on general relativity, and he invited Einstein to Göttingen to deliver a week of lectures on the subject.[39] Einstein received an enthusiastic reception at Göttingen.[40] Over the summer Einstein learned that Hilbert was also working on the field equations and redoubled his own efforts. During November 1915 Einstein published several papers culminating in "The Field Equations of Gravitation" (see Einstein field equations).[41] Nearly simultaneously David Hilbert published "The Foundations of Physics", an axiomatic derivation of the field equations (see Einstein–Hilbert action). Hilbert fully credited Einstein as the originator of the theory, and no public priority dispute concerning the field equations ever arose between the two men during their lives.[42] See more at priority.
     
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Hilbert#Physics
    , @utu
    General Relativity Priority Dispute
    This guy makes a compelling case that Hilbert was actually first. It is compelling because there was tampering with evidence that could benefit Einstein only.
    http://www.znaturforsch.com/aa/v59a/s59a0715.pdf
    However semi official inquiry decided otherwise, i.e., in favor of Einstein
    http://www.hs.uni-hamburg.de/DE/GNT/events/pdf/wuensch05.pdf
    Anyway, most of mathematics in General Relativity is most likely by Marcel Grossmann. "Grossmann was an expert in differential geometry and tensor calculus; just the mathematical tools Einstein discovered were needed for his work on gravity. Thus, it was natural that Einstein would enter into a scientific collaboration with Grossmann." (Wiki)

    The case of who formulated Special Relativity is much more interesting and speculative. There is no question that Lorentz and Poincare had pretty much everything before Einstein 1905 publication, which had zero references. When after WWI it was republished in English Einstein acknowledged that Lorentz transforms were formulated by Lorentz but allegedly he did not know it. However he never acknowledged Poincare until just few years before his death (*). Among some French scientist circulates an interesting conspiracy theory that German mathematicians (from Hilbert group in Gottingen) in hurry to be ahead of Poincare's publication wrote the 1905 paper and had Einstein sign it. Supposedly Einstein was selected by Planck because he published previous Einstein papers on thermodynamics - very similar to work of Gibbs, so he knew Einstein may go with that scheme.
    http://web.ihep.su/library/pubs/tconf05/ps/c5-1.pdf

    (*) In 1905 paper Einsteins states that the summation of velocity constitutes an algebraic group. Exactly the same phrasing as used earlier by Poincare who demonstrated that relativistic addition of velocity is a group. Poincare who at that time had several hundred publications and wrote several books was very influential mathematician in direct competition for honors and glory with Hilbert. I think that usage of the mathematical term of "group" at that time when the theory of groups was no well known was unlikely to originate with Einstein. This observation supports Gottingen conspiracy theory.
  242. whorefinder says: • Website
    @guest
    You don't have to pay priests. (Alhough, they expect something come collection time. But that's for all their services, not specifically confession.)

    People go to psychiatrists because they imagine they are a sort of expert. If you get as much out of it a