- Paperback: 788 pages
- Publisher: The M.I.T. Press; New edition edition (15 Nov. 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0262631717
- ISBN-13: 978-0262631716
- Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.8 x 22.9 cm
Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
1,131,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #505 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Psychology & Psychiatry > Schools of Thought > Psychoanalysis > Freud, Sigmund
- #2053 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Psychology & Psychiatry > Schools of Thought > Psychoanalysis > Theory
- #7489 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Medical & Healthcare Practitioners > Other Branches of Medicine > Psychiatry
- See Complete Table of Contents
Freud Evaluated: The Completed Arc Paperback – 15 Nov 1996
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More About the Author
"Although there may be a veritable torrent of books on Freud, there are few that can compare with this one in its historical breadth and detail and the comprehensiveness of its critique of Freudian theory... an important achievement... indispensable for any serious student of psychoanalytic theory." Morris N. Eagle, Contemporary Psychology
About the Author
Malcolm Macmillan is Adjunct Professor in the School of Psychology at Deakin University, Australia.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
During the night of July 17-18, 1880, a twenty-one-year-old girl anxiously awaited the arrival of the surgeon who was to operate on her seriously ill father. Read the first page
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The quality of Macmillan's arguments (when he makes real arguments at all instead of uncritically citing existing literature critical of Freud, in effect assuming that the fact that someone criticized Freud by itself proves that Freud must have been mistaken) is extremely variable. He makes a good case against parts of Freud's theories, such as the death instinct and the dream theory, but a poor case against others. His section on infantile sexuality is somewhat confused: it seems to move back and forth between saying that perversions are genuinely sexual and saying that they aren't, without the inconsistency being resolved.
I believe the uneven quality of Macmillan's arguments, which are less rigorous than their dry and often extremely technical nature would suggest and hardly represent the last word on Freud, is partly due to the overly-ambitious nature of his project. Had he written something more narrowly focused and limited in its ambitions, Macmillan would have had time to think the issues through more carefully and produced a better book; as it was, attempting the monumental task of evaluating the whole of Freud's work, he inevitably makes a mess of some things and thereby limits his overall achievement. Counter-arguments against many of Macmillian's criticisms of Freud certainly exist, but you won't read much about them in Freud Evaluated. Among the literature Macmillan ignores is Christopher Badcock's Oedipus in Evolution, which presents a case against the idea that the Oedipus complex is an evolutionary impossibility, something Macmillan thinks beyond question (here, as too often in this book, he is simply citing other people's work - Martin Daly and Margo Wilson's, in this case - and echoing its conclusions). Freud Evaluated may be the best purely negative critique of Freud in the scholarly literature, but it is rather one-sided and anyone wanting to understand the issues it addresses should take the trouble to read literature more favorable to psychoanalysis as well.
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