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Related to Freudianism: Freudian psychology


The psychoanalytic school of psychiatry founded by Sigmund Freud.



a general designation for the various schools and trends that apply the psychological doctrine of S. Freud in explaining cultural phenomena, creative processes, and society as a whole. As a social, philosophical, and anthropological doctrine, Freudianism should be distinguished from psychoanalysis—a specific method for studying the unconscious psychic processes; Freud attributed universal significance to the principles of psychoanalysis, which led him to a psychologistic treatment of society and personality.

Freudianism, from its very inception, did not represent a unified whole; Freud himself regarded the unconscious as the simultaneous source of both creative and destructive tendencies, and this ambivalence led to interpretations of his doctrine that were different from and sometimes directly opposite to each other. The 20th century was barely into its second decade when disputes arose among Freud’s closest disciples as to what constitutes the psyche’s basic motivating factor: for Freud, it was the energy of unconscious psychosexual drives; in A. Adler’s individual psychology, on the other hand, the determining role is played by the inferiority complex and the striving for self-assertion; in C. G. Jung’s school of analytical psychology, the collective unconscious and its archetypes are the basic factors; while for O. Rank (Austria) all human activity is governed by the need to overcome the initial “trauma of birth.”

The growing appeal of Freudianism after World War I was linked to the general crisis in bourgeois society and culture as well as the crisis in several traditional schools of psychology. At the same time, various adherents of Freudianism were engaged in the attempt to formulate what Freud had failed to provide—namely, a philosophical and methodological groundwork for his doctrine; such attempts were based on a number of different philosophical and sociological theories. Of these various currents, one that was particularly influential in the USA was the biologis-tic trend, which inclined toward positivism and behaviorism and which was an important factor in the development of psychosomatic medicine; also included within this trend are the various attempts to align Freudianism with reflexology and cybernetics.

Another well-known trend is the school of “social Freudianism”; in its traditional form, it views cultural, social, and political phenomena as resulting from the sublimation of psychosexual energy and the transformation of those primary unconscious processes that in Freudianism constitute the foundation of the social and cultural sphere. Neo-Freudianism, which arose in the late 1930’s, seeks to convert Freudianism into a purely sociological and culturological doctrine, thereby breaking with the concept of the unconscious and the biological premises of Freud’s doctrine. Neo-Freudianism gained many adherents in the USA after World War II; the major exponents of the school are E. Fromm, K. Horney, and H. Sullivan.

Schools of thought that have emerged since the late 1940’s include the “existential analysis” of L. Binswanger (Switzerland) and the school of medical anthropology of V. Weizsäcker (Federal Republic of Germany), both of which were influenced by existentialism. R. Niebuhr and P. Tillich are examples of the characteristic attempt to make use of Freudianism on the part of Protestant theologians; the same is applicable to some of the Catholic theologians, such as J. Caruso (Austria) and the “left Catholics.” A specific reinterpretation of Freudianism, as reflected in the ideology of the “new left” movement of the 1960’s—for example, in H. Marcuse’s Eros and Civilization (1955)—had its roots in the ideas of W. Reich, a student of Freud’s and ideologist of what came to be known as the sexual revolution.

Freud’s influence has been especially marked in social psychology, ethnography (that is, American cultural anthropology, which is closely linked to neo-Freudianism), literary scholarship, and literary and arts criticism (for example, in the myth-ritual school). Similarly, the influence of Freudianism is reflected in the theory and practice of various modernistic schools of art, such as surrealism, which claims to extend the sphere of art by its appeal to the unconscious.


Voloshinov, V. N. Freidizm. Moscow-Leningrad, 1927.
Bassin, F. P. “Freidizm v svete sovremennykh nauchnykh diskussii.” Voprosy psikhologii, 1958, nos. 5 and 6.
Freud and the 20th Century. Cleveland, 1963.
Brown, J. A. C. Freud and Post-Freudians. Harmondsworth, England, 1967.
See also references under FREUD, PSYCHOANALYSIS, and NEOFREUDIANISM.


References in periodicals archive ?
Freudianism, Hermeneutics and the Dance Motif in Two Post 2000 Zimbabwean Short Stories
For a while, after the publication of Freud's Worcester lectures, attacks increased on Freudianism (which, in the popular mind, meant free love, removal of all restraints and a relapse to the state of savagery).
The Rainbow and Women in Love, for all their great qualities, too frequently descend into a low parody of Freudianism, and later books like The Plumed Serpent into a morass of Lawrentian cliches, but Sons and Lovers remains fresh, true to the reality of the young man--Paul Morel or Bert Lawrence--who lived it.
Kimball deftly chronicles how artists such as Rothko, Sargent, Rubens, Homer, Gauguin, Van Gogh, and Velazquez have fallen victim to interpretations based on everything from sexism, racism, and feminism to Marxism and Freudianism.
The act of recasting, by the way, is what Nixon calls "fantastic reality" in the title of the book, though she occasionally changes its spelling to "phantastic" in order to match Klein's self-differentiation from orthodox Freudianism (99).
His name alone identifies him as a barbarian, a Hun, no different from a Nazi, but to hammer home the point to 1970s audiences, Attila indulges in bad sex, fellatio, rape, murder; the native socialist peasants, Gramscian PCI voters in the making, by contrast enjoy loving sex in which women are as pleasured as are the men--1900 has strains of vulgar Freudianism and vulgar feminism to go with its vulgar Marxism.
by Lacan and in many versions of French Freudianism different from his, that take into consideration problems close to irrelevant to the French post-Heideggerians and/or to de Man's idea of rhetoric.
Freudianism and other guru-driven "isms" are dead, replaced by an emphasis on the brain.
Because the United States had provided a richer home for Freudianism, existentialism, and German emigre thought than could be found in those movements' countries of origin, it was natural that America should make room for a new philosophy of "poststructuralism.
Psychiatry is still regarded as a highly respectable profession in Los Angeles - where news of the shortcomings of Freudianism is taking a long time to filter through.
Other themes woven into antibourgeois propaganda in literature and drama (including television) were "an oversimplified Freudianism that regarded all suppression of human impulse as leading to frustration and psychic distortions .
The latter event marked a significant departure from the traditional plenary format with the introduction, in addition to the 17 plenary papers, of six working groups on topics such as Existentialism, Ideas and Ideologies in Children's Literature, the Debate of the Sexes in Literature, Der Marxismus-Leninismus und die Entwicklung der nordeuropaischen Literaturen, Freudianism, and Religious Ideas.