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Freudian Slip

January 3, 2007

Catching up on the front page news, one story that caught my eye was in the New York Times on Christmas Eve. Front page, no less.

You sensed reporter Ralph Blumenthal could barely repress a giggle as he reported the fascinating story about  an affair Sigmund Freud is alleged to have had with his wife’s younger sister, Minna Bernays.

Blumenthal reports that a recently discovered entry in a Swiss hotel ledger shows that Freud signed in as, “Dr. Sigm Freud u frau” (Dr. Sigmund Freud and wife). Apparently, Freud’s wife, Martha, was aware of the good doctor’s two week jaunt to the Swiss alps with sis.
Until now, the father of psychoanalysis was believed to have lived a morally pure life. It may cause some distress to some of his  disciples to now find out that their mentor, their guiding light, so to speak, has feet of clay. Personally, I find it quite reassuring and very human. Who better to understand the human condition than someone who has lived it? How reassuring for we poor, flawed humans to discover that Freud himself shared our foibles.

Now if he’d slept with his mother, that truly would be, well, Freudian.

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