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On Murder, Mourning and Melancholia (Modern Classics Translated)

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These works were written against a background of war and racism. Freud sought the sources of conflict in the deepest memories of humankind, finding clear continuities between our 'primitive' past and 'civilized' modernity. In Totem and Taboo he explores institutions of tribal life, tracing analogies between the rites of hunter-gatherers and the obsessions of These works were written against a background of war and racism. Freud sought the sources of conflict in the deepest memories of humankind, finding clear continuities between our 'primitive' past and 'civilized' modernity. In Totem and Taboo he explores institutions of tribal life, tracing analogies between the rites of hunter-gatherers and the obsessions of urban-dwellers, while Mourning and Melancholia sees a similarly self-destructive savagery underlying individual life in the modern age, which issues at times in self-harm and suicide. And Freud's extraordinary letter to Einstein, Why War? - rejecting what he saw as the physicist's naïve pacifism - sums up his unsparing view of history in a few profoundly pessimistic, yet grimly persuasive pages.


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These works were written against a background of war and racism. Freud sought the sources of conflict in the deepest memories of humankind, finding clear continuities between our 'primitive' past and 'civilized' modernity. In Totem and Taboo he explores institutions of tribal life, tracing analogies between the rites of hunter-gatherers and the obsessions of These works were written against a background of war and racism. Freud sought the sources of conflict in the deepest memories of humankind, finding clear continuities between our 'primitive' past and 'civilized' modernity. In Totem and Taboo he explores institutions of tribal life, tracing analogies between the rites of hunter-gatherers and the obsessions of urban-dwellers, while Mourning and Melancholia sees a similarly self-destructive savagery underlying individual life in the modern age, which issues at times in self-harm and suicide. And Freud's extraordinary letter to Einstein, Why War? - rejecting what he saw as the physicist's naïve pacifism - sums up his unsparing view of history in a few profoundly pessimistic, yet grimly persuasive pages.

30 review for On Murder, Mourning and Melancholia (Modern Classics Translated)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Supriya Raghavendra

    Freud is a creepy person who tells you things about you and your thoughts that you both hesitantly admit to yourself and at the same time pretend to either disagree or give it a benefit of doubt... depending on how good/interesting it makes you feel about yourself. :P This book is actually "totem and taboo" plus 'mourning and melancholia". A fascinating study drawing parallels between savages and neurotics. The book starts with interesting observations on the psychology of taboo illustrated Freud is a creepy person who tells you things about you and your thoughts that you both hesitantly admit to yourself and at the same time pretend to either disagree or give it a benefit of doubt... depending on how good/interesting it makes you feel about yourself. :P This book is actually "totem and taboo" plus 'mourning and melancholia". A fascinating study drawing parallels between savages and neurotics. The book starts with interesting observations on the psychology of taboo illustrated through the case of incest. The question of much intrigue being, what made primitive societies take great care to avoid incest and what does that imply about modern society's attitude on incest given the advancements in terms of sexual liberation? The nature of taboo is further examined along with the topic of emotional ambivalence. Freud talks about how taboo is seen as something with horrible consequences and yet often no one is able to tell why it's so horrible. The second chapter talks in great detail about the psychological ingredients that make and propagate a taboo. The third chapter is essentially about the making of a religion. Probably the most controversial proposition being religion as a form of repressed incest. Hmm! "Mourning and melancholia" is a study of two possible reactions to loss, in which Freud observes that melancholia unlike mourning, is a reaction to loss in which the process of separation from the object of attachment remains incomplete. Overall, I found Freud's observations and ideas absolutely fascinating despite their outrageousness at times. Pretty ground breaking for me. Freud is totalllllly a man of great courage and curiosity! :P

  2. 4 out of 5

    Hayley Gregory

    I know it's weird to like Fred and to like readings with the word "Murder" in it 9And "mourning and Melancholia" for that matter) but I found this a really interesting theory to consider. Regardless of accepting his thoughts or not, I find the idea very profound and definitely worth looking at in attempt to broaden your pea-sized mind. It also really helped me examine my own mourning at a time when I was mourning many losses, none of which were associated with actual death so I liked it's I know it's weird to like Fred and to like readings with the word "Murder" in it 9And "mourning and Melancholia" for that matter) but I found this a really interesting theory to consider. Regardless of accepting his thoughts or not, I find the idea very profound and definitely worth looking at in attempt to broaden your pea-sized mind. It also really helped me examine my own mourning at a time when I was mourning many losses, none of which were associated with actual death so I liked it's ability to translate to a broader spectrum of the intention. Absolutely interesting read.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Cristina Chițu

    3.5

  4. 5 out of 5

    Michellepbaca

    my new favorite state is melancholia. I argue that it is productive, even preferred to mourning. I say take your "process" and let it fester some.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Joey

  6. 4 out of 5

    Anca

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jude

  8. 4 out of 5

    Katrina Hall

  9. 4 out of 5

    Slosi Fms

  10. 4 out of 5

    Proustitute

  11. 5 out of 5

    Humbert

  12. 4 out of 5

    Amy Honda

  13. 4 out of 5

    carol vaz

  14. 4 out of 5

    mervevstheworld

  15. 5 out of 5

    Patricia

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kathy M

  17. 4 out of 5

    Naomi

  18. 5 out of 5

    Margarita

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ziemowit

  20. 4 out of 5

    Richyprior Prior

  21. 4 out of 5

    Adrian

  22. 5 out of 5

    Augusta

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sinitta

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jack

  26. 5 out of 5

    Vikas Datta

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kara

  28. 4 out of 5

    David Smith

  29. 4 out of 5

    Davis

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nayeem Islam

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