Of all the conflicts that characterized the early years of the modern psychoanalytic movement, none was more heated than the acrimonious breakup between Freud and Adler. This book charts the rise and fall of the relationship between two of the founding fathers of modern psychoanalysis: from Freud’s admiration of Adler as the ‘sharpest mind’ in his circle, to Adler’s dramatic departure in 1911, and the establishment of their different schools of psychotherapy.
Bernhard Handlbauer explores the theories which united and divided the two men, all of them still important questions in the theory and practice of psychotherapy, such as the relationships between sexuality and aggression, and between the individual and society. Extracts from discussions of the so-called Wednesday Society, where many of these issues were debated, allow us to hear speaking all the great names in modern psychoanalysis. The emotion of the controversy is vividly brought to life – Freud’s hurt that Adler had abandoned the core of his theories, and Adler’s pain at Freud’s strivings to exclude him from the society. This absorbing, thoroughly researched and impartial study finishes with a fresh, 1990s view of the controversy and its significance for the development of psychoanalysis.
Publisher: ONE WORLD OXFORD