Psychoanalysis

2014-09-25T10:20:59Z (GMT) by Brian Jarvis
Put simply, psychoanalysis is a theory that focuses on the dynamic relationship between the body, mind and social order. This theory was first developed in the work of Sigmund Freud, a psychologist who ran a medical practice in Vienna from 1886 up until his death in 1939. Whilst the popular myth suggests that psychoanalysis is ‘all about sex’, Freud in fact studied and wrote about a range of subjects that included religion (in The Future of an Illusion (1927) and Moses and Monotheism (1939)), occultism (in Totem and Taboo (1913)), trauma (in Beyond the Pleasure Principle (1920)) and humour (in Jokes and their Relationship to the Unconscious (1905)). Freud was not fixated on one subject, however, it is true to say that sexuality is central to much psychoanalytical thinking about the self, the family and society. Even if you do not agree with psychoanalysis (and many have their doubts) it is still necessary to recognise the huge impact of Freud’s theories on western culture from the arts and academic disciplines to advertising and popular culture.