By Daniel Burston
This e-book explores the lifestyles and paintings of a missed determine within the historical past of psychoanalysis, Karl Stern, who introduced Freudian concept and perform to Catholic (and Christian) audiences round the world.
Karl Stern used to be a German-Jewish neurologist and psychiatrist who fled Germany in 1937 – first to London, then to Canada, the place he taught at McGill collage and the college of Ottawa, changing into leader of Psychiatry at a number of significant clinics in Ottawa and Montreal among 1952 and 1968, while he went into inner most perform. In 1951 he released The Pillar of Fire, a memoir that chronicled his youth, early life and early maturity, his scientific and psychiatric education, his first research, and his serial flirtations with Jewish Orthodoxy, Marxism and Zionism – all in the course of the galloping Nazification of Germany. It additionally explored the long-standing inner-conflicts that preceded Stern’s conversion to Catholicism in 1943.
The Pillar of Fire used to be a run-away most sensible vendor, and used to be by means of a chain of exceptional books and papers that suggest Freud (and psychoanalysis as a rule) to Christian audiences, together with The 3rd Revolution (1954), The Flight from Woman (1965) and Love and Success (1975). Stern firmly believed within the compatibility of technology and religion, and was once a celebrity of the Catholic lecture circuit, the place he usually spoke concerning the evils of anti-Semitism. His friendship and correspondence with Thomas Merton, psychiatrist/psychoanalyst Gregory Zilboorg, philosophers Jacques Maritain and Gabriel Marcel, activist Dorothy Day and novelist Graham Greene (among others) shed huge gentle on Catholic highbrow lifestyles within the chilly battle period, and the problems dealing with Stern, whose simultaneous efforts to wrestle Christian anti-Semitism and to combine Freudian concept into the center of Catholic philosophy met with combined effects.
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Extra info for A Forgotten Freudian: The Passion of Karl Stern
The basic theme of this passage is collective renewal in the face of overwhelming tragedy; the idea that even in the face of death E A R LY Y E A R S 13 and devastation, the righteous can trust God to renew and restore His people. To those conversant with the Prophets, this passage is very potent stuff, and has enormous resonance for Jews and Christians—and even to secular Zionists, who interpret it allegorically—to this day. But no one in the congregation that day was particularly moved or interested in his rendering of Ezekiel.
Even some surgeons, the most mechanistic members of the medical profession, paid tribute to the novelist, saying that Mann’s psychological insights changed their outlook on health and healing. Thanks to Volhard’s enthusiasm, Stern also became an admirer of Mann. Like many of his contemporaries in 1932, Stern was distressed by the lack of coherent opposition to Hitler among German liberals. Mann’s politics, as well as his literary craft, struck Stern as having great integrity. ” At the same time, in his letter to Mann, Stern complained that The Magic Mountain had lumped Marxism with Catholicism in the (rather unsympathetic) character of Naphta.
As Stern recalled, several of them held forth on Trotsky’s theory of “permanent revolution” as if he was one of their own. Stern pointed out to them that Trotsky was a Bolshevik, and even worse, Jewish. ) […] they belonged to a then quite powerful wing of the Nazi party which was in favor of 36 A F O R G OT T E N F R E U D I A N an alliance between Communist Russia and Nazi Germany against what they called Western Capitalism. They claimed that very few of the Nazi leaders was really an anti-Semite, and that anti-Semitism was quite consciously used merely as a political tool to obtain the support of the petite bourgeoisie.
A Forgotten Freudian: The Passion of Karl Stern by Daniel Burston