Sigmund Freud quotes

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Sigmund Freud

Birthdate: 6. May 1856
Date of death: 23. September 1939

Sigmund Freud was an Austrian neurologist and the founder of psychoanalysis, a clinical method for treating psychopathology through dialogue between a patient and a psychoanalyst.Freud was born to Galician Jewish parents in the Moravian town of Freiberg, in the Austrian Empire. He qualified as a doctor of medicine in 1881 at the University of Vienna. Upon completing his habilitation in 1885, he was appointed a docent in neuropathology and became an affiliated professor in 1902. Freud lived and worked in Vienna, having set up his clinical practice there in 1886. In 1938, Freud left Austria to escape the Nazis. He died in exile in the United Kingdom in 1939.

In founding psychoanalysis, Freud developed therapeutic techniques such as the use of free association and discovered transference, establishing its central role in the analytic process. Freud's redefinition of sexuality to include its infantile forms led him to formulate the Oedipus complex as the central tenet of psychoanalytical theory. His analysis of dreams as wish-fulfillments provided him with models for the clinical analysis of symptom formation and the underlying mechanisms of repression. On this basis Freud elaborated his theory of the unconscious and went on to develop a model of psychic structure comprising id, ego and super-ego. Freud postulated the existence of libido, a sexualised energy with which mental processes and structures are invested and which generates erotic attachments, and a death drive, the source of compulsive repetition, hate, aggression and neurotic guilt. In his later works, Freud developed a wide-ranging interpretation and critique of religion and culture.

Though in overall decline as a diagnostic and clinical practice, psychoanalysis remains influential within psychology, psychiatry, and psychotherapy, and across the humanities. It thus continues to generate extensive and highly contested debate with regard to its therapeutic efficacy, its scientific status, and whether it advances or is detrimental to the feminist cause. Nonetheless, Freud's work has suffused contemporary Western thought and popular culture. W. H. Auden's 1940 poetic tribute to Freud describes him as having created "a whole climate of opinion / under whom we conduct our different lives."

Works

„Conscience is the internal perception of the rejection of a particular wish operating within us.“

—  Sigmund Freud, book Totem and Taboo

Totem and Taboo: Resemblances Between the Mental Lives of Savages and Neurotics (1913)
1910s

„We are never so defenceless against suffering as when we love.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Source: 1920s, Civilization and Its Discontents (1929), Ch. 2; as translated by James Strachey, p.63

Citát „Being entirely honest with oneself is a good exercise.“

„Being entirely honest with oneself is a good exercise.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Letter to Wilhelm Fliess (15 October 1897), as quoted in Origins of Psychoanalysis
1890s

„Whoever loves become humble. Those who love have, so to speak, pawned a part of their narcissism.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Wer verliebt ist, ist demütig. Wer liebt, hat sozusagen ein Stück seines Narzißmus eingebüßt.
"Gesammelte Schriften, Volume 6" (1924), p. 183
1920s

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„Towards the outside, at any rate, the ego seems to maintain clear and sharp lines of demarcation. There is only one state — admittedly an unusual state, but not one that can be stigmatized as pathological — in which it does not do this. At the height of being in love the boundary between ego and object threatens to melt away.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Source: 1920s, Civilization and Its Discontents (1929), Ch. 1, as translated by Joan Riviere (1961)
Context: Towards the outside, at any rate, the ego seems to maintain clear and sharp lines of demarcation. There is only one state — admittedly an unusual state, but not one that can be stigmatized as pathological — in which it does not do this. At the height of being in love the boundary between ego and object threatens to melt away. Against all the evidence of his senses, a man who is in love declares that "I" and "you" are one, and is prepared to behave as if it were a fact.

„Aggressiveness was not created by property.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Source: 1920s, Civilization and Its Discontents (1929), Ch. 5, as translated by James Strachey and Anna Freud (1961)
Context: I cannot inquire into whether the abolition of private property is expedient or advantageous. But I am able to recognize that the psychological premisses on which the [system]] is based are an untenable illusion. In abolishing private property we deprive the human love of aggression of one of its instruments, certainly a strong one, though certainly not the strongest, but we have not altered the differences in power and influence which are misused by aggressiveness, nor have we altered anything in its nature. Aggressiveness was not created by property. It reigned almost without limit in primitive times, when property was still very scanty, and it already shows itself in the nursery almost before property has given up its primal, anal form; it forms the basis of every relation of affection and love among people (with the single exception, perhaps, of the mother's relations to her male child).

„Our knowledge of the historical worth of certain religious doctrines increases our respect for them, but does not invalidate our proposal that they should cease to be put forward as the reasons for the precepts of civilization.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Source: 1920s, The Future of an Illusion (1927), Ch. 8
Context: Our knowledge of the historical worth of certain religious doctrines increases our respect for them, but does not invalidate our proposal that they should cease to be put forward as the reasons for the precepts of civilization. On the contrary! Those historical residues have helped us to view religious teachings, as it were, as neurotic relics, and we may now argue that the time has probably come, as it does in an analytic treatment, for replacing the effects of repression by the results of the rational operation of the intellect.

„The voice of the intellect is a soft one, but it does not rest until it has gained a hearing.“

—  Sigmund Freud

1920s, The Future of an Illusion (1927)
Context: The voice of the intellect is a soft one, but it does not rest until it has gained a hearing. Ultimately, after endlessly repeated rebuffs, it succeeds. This is one of the few points in which it may be optimistic about the future of mankind, but in itself it signifies not a little.

„The common characteristic of all perversions, on the other hand, is that they have abandoned reproduction as their aim.“

—  Sigmund Freud

We term sexual activity perverse when it has renounced the aim of reproduction and follows the pursuit of pleasure as an independent goal. And so you realize that the turning point in the development of sexual life lies in its subjugation to the purpose of reproduction. Everything this side of the turning point, everything that has given up this purpose and serves the pursuit of pleasure alone, must carry the term "perverse" and as such be regarded with contempt.
A General Introduction to Psychoanalysis, 1920, preface by G. Stanley Hall, Twentieth Lecture: General Theory of the Neuroses, The Sexual Life of Man, New York, Boni and Liveright, p. 273. (reprinted 1975 by Pocket pub. ISBN 0671800329 ISBN 978-0671800321and 2012 by Emereo Publishing, ISBN 9781486414147 http://books.google.com/books?id=zCgFAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA273&dq=%22common+characteristic+of+all+perversions%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=VaQtUvq2H4bS9gSy3YCoCQ&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=%22common%20characteristic%20of%20all%20perversions%22&f=false (Harvard sociologist and a founder of the Rural Sociological Society Carle C. Zimmerman (1897-1983) notes the following in regard to Freud's early thinking on human sexuality: "Nor did the atheist Sigmund Freud perceive any difficulty in detecting the intrinsic perversity of contraception and allied deviations." see, Marriage and the Family, A Text for Moderns, (1956), Carl C. Zimmerman, Ph.D., Lucius F. Cervantes, S.J., PhD. (Harvard, Regis), Regnery, Chicago, Ill., p. 329. http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b4518815;view=1up;seq=347 http://books.google.com/books?id=Jt9-AAAAIAAJ&q=%22common+characteristic+of+all+perversions%22&dq=%22common+characteristic+of+all+perversions%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=by3cU-y9OsOhyAS2loKgAw&ved=0CCkQ6AEwAg
1920s

„A man like me cannot live without a hobby-horse, a consuming passion — in Schiller's words a tyrant.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Ein Mensch wie ich kann ohne Steckenpferd, ohne herrschende Leidenschaften, ohne einen Tyrannen in Schillers Worten, nicht leben. Ich habe meinen Tyrannen gefunden und in seinem Dienst kenne ich kein Maß.
Letter to Wilhelm Fliess (1895), as quoted in Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences Vol 3-4 (1967) p. 159
1890s
Context: A man like me cannot live without a hobby-horse, a consuming passion — in Schiller's words a tyrant. I have found my tyrant, and in his service I know no limits. My tyrant is psychology. it has always been my distant, beckoning goal and now since I have hit upon the neuroses, it has come so much the nearer.

„One might compare the relation of the ego to the id with that between a rider and his horse.“

—  Sigmund Freud

The Anatomy of the Mental Personality (Lecture 31)
1930s, "New Introductory Lectures on Psycho-analysis" https://books.google.com/books/about/New_Introductory_Lectures_on_Psycho_anal.html?id=hIqaep1qKRYC&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button#v=onepage&q&f=false (1933)
Context: One might compare the relation of the ego to the id with that between a rider and his horse. The horse provides the locomotor energy, and the rider has the prerogative of determining the goal and of guiding the movements of his powerful mount towards it. But all too often in the relations between the ego and the id we find a picture of the less ideal situation in which the rider is obliged to guide his horse in the direction in which it itself wants to go.

„I will cure all the incurable nervous cases and through you I shall be healthy“

—  Sigmund Freud

Letter to Martha Bernays, after receiving a travel grant he had been having dreams of receiving (20 June 1885)
1880s
Context: Princess, my little Princess,
Oh, how wonderful it will be! I am coming with money and staying a long time and bringing something beautiful for you and then go on to Paris and become a great scholar and then come back to Vienna with a huge, enormous halo, and then we will soon get married, and I will cure all the incurable nervous cases and through you I shall be healthy and I will go on kissing you till you are strong and gay and happy — and "if they haven't died, they are still alive today."

„He that has eyes to see and ears to hear may convince himself that no mortal can keep a secret.“

—  Sigmund Freud

Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria (1905) Ch. 2 : The First Dream
1900s
Source: Introductory Lectures on Psychoanalysis
Context: He that has eyes to see and ears to hear may convince himself that no mortal can keep a secret. If his lips are silent, he chatters with his fingertips; betrayal oozes out of him at every pore.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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