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A Secret Symmetry: Sabina Spielrein Between Jung & Freud

Carotenuto, Aldo

Published by Pantheon Books, 1982
ISBN 10: 0394515307 / ISBN 13: 9780394515304
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Title: A Secret Symmetry: Sabina Spielrein Between ...

Publisher: Pantheon Books

Publication Date: 1982

Binding: hardcover

Book Condition: Very Good In Dustjacket

Edition: 1st Edition.

Description:

New York. 1982. Pantheon Books. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Dustjacket. Translated from the Italian by Arno Pomerans. John Shepley & Krishna Winston. 251 pages. May 1982. hardcover. Jacket design by Paul Gamarello. 0394515307. keywords: Psychology Jung Freud. inventory # 30287. FROM THE PUBLISHER - A biography of the relationship between C.G. Jung and Sabina Spielrein, a young Russian woman who was in love with him and was one of his first patients. Sabina Naftulovna Spielrein (born 1884, died August 12th 1942, both in Rostov-on-Don), was one of the first female psychoanalysts. She studied under Carl Gustav Jung, with whom she also had a romantic relationship. One of her more famous analysands was the Swiss developmental psychologist, Jean Piaget, who had also met Jung during a postdoc in Zurich in 1918-1919. Born 1885 into a family of a Jewish doctors in Rostov, Russia, her mother was a dentist, her father a physician. One of her brothers, Isaac Spielrein, was a Soviet psychologist, a pioneer of labor psychology. Sabina was married to Pavel Scheftel, a physician of Russian Jewish descent. They had two daughters: Renate, born 1912, and Eva, born 1924. Before enrolling as a student of medicine in Zürich, Spielrein was admitted in August 1904 to the Burghölzli mental hospital near Zürich, where Carl Gustav Jung worked at that time, and remained there until June 1905. While there, she established a deep emotional relationship with Jung who later was her medical dissertation advisor. The historian and psychoanalyst Peter Loewenberg argues that this was a sexual relationship, in breach of professional ethics, and that it ‘jeopardized his position at the Burghölzli and led to his rupture with Bleuler and his departure from the University of Zurich’ Spielrein graduated in 1911, defending a dissertation about a case of schizophrenia, and was later elected a member of the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society. She continued with Jung until 1912 and later saw Sigmund Freud in Vienna. In 1923, Spielrein returned to Soviet Russia and with Vera Schmidt established a kindergarten in Moscow, nicknamed ‘The White Nursery’ by the children (all furniture and walls having been white). The institution was committed to bringing up children as free persons as early as possible. ‘The White Nursery’ was closed down three years later by the authorities under false accusation and it was accused of practicing sexual perversions on the children (in fact, Stalin actually enrolled his own son, Vasily, into the ‘White Nursery’ under a false name). Sabina's husband Pavel perished during Stalin's Great Terror, as did her brother Isaac. Sabina and her two children were probably killed by an SS Death Squad, Einsatzgruppe D in 1942 in Zmievskaya Balka. While Spielrein is not often given more than a footnote in the history of the development of psychoanalysis, her conception of the sexual drive as containing both an instinct of destruction and an instinct of transformation, presented to the Society in 1912, in fact anticipates both Freud's ‘death drive’ and Jung's views on ‘transformation’ (Bettelheim 1983). She may thus have inspired both men's most creative ideas. Bookseller Inventory # 30287

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Language Notes: Text: English, Italian (translation)

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