Posts Tagged ‘neurosis’

Sigmund Freud’s Biggest Slips

Wednesday, November 18th, 2009

Two weeks before Sigmund Freud’s fortieth birthday in 1896, he presented a lecture to his Viennese colleagues on the cause of the neuroses, to “show them the solution of a thousands-years-old problem.”  The evening ended in humiliation when one of the most distinguished listeners dismissed his work as a “scientific fairly tale.”  The talk even harmed his professional practice because he later wrote to a friend that a “password has been given out to abandon me.”  Though many scientific pioneers have been misjudged by their contemporaries, in this case the assessment by the audience was correct.