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from Joel Kovel
  • It is not enough to say that Freud created a fundamentally radical doctrine that was somehow captured by bourgeois interests – it is necessary to recognize and spell out the points within Freud's psychoanalysis which already represented those interests and sought their embrace. Freud was ambivalent, but ultimately believed in reason, knowing it be but the 'bound or outward circumference of desire – yet he had no faith in the desire which gave reason life.
from The Embodied Mind
  • Freud's great discovery was that not all represdentations were accessible to consciousness; he never seemed to doubt that the unconscious, for all that it might operate on a different symbol system that the conscious, was fully symbolic. fully intentional, and fully representational. (p47)
    • Is that right?
from metapsychology
  • In the 1910s, Freud wrote a series of twelve essays, to be collected as Preliminaries to a Metapsychology. Five of these were published independently under the titles: "Instincts and Their Vicissitudes," "Repression," "The Unconscious," "A Metapsychological Supplement to the Theory of Dreams," and "Mourning and Melancholia." The remaining seven remained unpublished, an expression of Freud's ambivalence about his own attempts to articulate the whole of his vision of psychoanalysis. In 1919 he wrote to Lou Andreas-Salome, "Where is my Metapsychology? In the first place it remains unwritten".10 In 1920 he published Beyond the Pleasure Principle, a text with metaphysical ambitions.
from metapsychology
  • In the context of Freudian psychology, the large-scale structure of the mind or of theories of mind. (That is kind of unclear, but I that's because I am highly unclear on the concept).
from Thoughts Without a Thinker
  • Freud didn't get Buddhism, dismissed mediation as infantile "oceanic" feeling. But in fact both are dealing with the fundamentals of mind and have both points of similarity and also complement each other in interesting ways.

Freud

16 Oct 2021 10:57 - 08 Jan 2022 10:04

    • Freud was apparently a terrible scientist and a terrible person, and yet so important that we have to pay a lot of attention to him and his broken theories. This is from Freud: Inventor of the Modern Mind by Peter Kramer
      • Most of Freud’s particular contributions—such as castration anxiety in boys and its counterpart, penis envy in girls— have faded in similar fashion. Some of Freud’s ideas have been disproved. But for most, the problem is yet worse. The concepts are too distant from current belief to merit any research effort. Freud’s framework of understanding seems simply wrong... This combination of changes has proved destructive to Freud’s reputation. He was more devious and less original than he made himself out to be, and where he pioneered, he was often wrong. Freud displayed bad character in the service of bad science. And yet, Freud remains influential. What is most remarkable about Freud is the combination of ephemeral discoveries and lasting impact. Freud is sui generis precisely because he has turned out not to resemble Copernicus, Darwin, or Einstein.
    • And yet
      • It is impossible to imagine the modern without Freud...we remain Freudians in our daily lives. We discuss intimate concerns in Freud’s language, using words like ego and defensiveness. We listen and observe as Freudians. As others address us, we make note of telltale incongruities that simultaneously hide and reveal unacceptable thoughts and feelings. > This Freud is our Freud, a man mistaken on many fronts whose work provided the stimulus for the making of the modern. Was Freud a visionary or a huckster?... If we are all Freudians, we have reason to try to make sense of the flawed and brilliant thinker who, in the words of W. H. Auden’s eulogy, often “was wrong and, at times, absurd,”
    • I basically agree with all this, although the more scientific/rationalist part of me wants to just throw it all away with great force. It's not just that Freud is important, it's that he got some big thing right even if all the details were wrong.