New Book – Hysterical. Anna Freud’s Story by Rebecca Coffey


Publishing year: 2014

This is a novel told from the perspective of Anna Freud, Sigmund Freud’s youngest child.

She was born in 1895, and in the novel we hear her voice as she tells us about her father and her relationship with him. Sigmund Freud married Anna’s brother despite the opposition of the woman’s mother, who sent her to Germany for a few years. Then they got married and the couple had six children, three boys and three girls.

From a very early age, Anna is aware of her father’s job, and she even is allowed in his office as he treats women for hysteria and sexual issues. Anna seems to be a very precocious child, and from the early age of seven, she starts having strange dreams and has sexual desires.

I have to say that Anna’s descriptions of her father’s and his colleagues’ psychoanalitic sessions are quite bizarre, and Freud’s ideas are really odd. His explanations about men’s and women’s conducts had a sexual base, and he claimed that all women wanted to be raped, and during his sessions, his patients wanted to have sex with him, and in response to their desires, he wanted to have sex with them too. Very strange indeed.


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