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Sigmund Freud: Iconoclast and Viennese Jew (Part Two)

  • Prime Produce 424 West 54th Street New York, NY, 10019 United States (map)

Two-part series: Sunday, Dec. 3rd and 10th, 2017
High school students: 11:30am - 1:00pm
Expect an awesome lunch, just saying...
Faculty: Ben Kaplan, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research

A Freudian slip. The unconscious. Repression. Freud is everywhere in our culture today, but who was he really? A Viennese doctor, he revolutionized the field of psychology and invented modern psychotherapy. Freud was also Jewish, and deeply conflicted about his Jewishness—his last book, Moses and Monotheism,proposed that Moses was an Egyptian prince killed by the Israelites, who then repressed the memory of the murder to found Judaism—and his story mirrors the tragedy of Jewish experience in the 20th century. The Nazis burned his books, and in 1938 he fled to England, where he died a year later. Freud’s writing and thinking have influenced us in a myriad of ways, but how does his work speak to us today? And how do we understand Freud’s Jewishness in the 21st century, his critiques of culture, and his insistence that despite having rejected religion, he remained a Jew?

A 90 minute tour through some of Freud’s classic excerpts, with a particular focus on his ‘Jewish’ writings. Students will also be provided with short, secondary readings.