- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: John Murray; Reprint edition (20 Sept. 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0719567939
- ISBN-13: 978-0719567933
- Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.5 x 19.7 cm
Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
823,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #354 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Psychology & Psychiatry > Schools of Thought > Psychoanalysis > Freud, Sigmund
- #1546 in Books > Health, Family & Lifestyle > Psychology & Psychiatry > Schools of Thought > Psychoanalysis > Theory
- #1761 in Books > Biography > Medical, Legal & Social Sciences > Psychology
Freud's Wizard: The Enigma of Ernest Jones Paperback – 20 Sep 2007
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'Brenda Maddox tells Ernest Jones's story with economy and verve, mixing relevant details of his personal life with brilliant insights into the history of psychoanalysis' (Andrew Lycett, Literary Review)
'Brenda Maddox has a gift for tangential approaches. She hits on an angle that has been missed, or she unearths a minor figure who leaps to life irresistible as she writes. She has done it again with Ernest Jones, Freud's disciple and biographer... Maddox pulls no punches in dealing with either the wizard or his master, and she kept me entertained from start to finish with the very odd story she has to tell' (Claire Tomalin, Guardian)
'Maddox's lesson of [Jones'] useful, compromised life is an object lesson in biographical advocacy. She speaks well for the slippery Jones, and makes me wish I had met him' (Norman Lebrecht)
'Our best biographer of the ones that got away, has uncovered another brilliant subject' (Norman LeBrecht, Evening Standard)
'The "dark inconsistencies" of Jones's sexuality perplexed Freud, who did not have the benefit of this biography to aid his understanding of a quirkily quixotic intellectual and emotional adventure.' (Iain Finlayson, The Times)
'A good introduction to the turbulent and often strange beginnings of psychoanalysis' (Hanif Kureishi, The Observer)
From an award-winning biographer, the remarkable story of the founder of British pschyoanalysis, Freud's right hand manSee all Product Description
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Despite her admitted admiration for Jones, Maddox fairly presents Jones's character weaknesses as well as his strengths. She doesn't shy away from facing some of the questionable moral indiscretions in Jones's life-both personally and professionally- nor does she paint an overly positive portrait of his motivations in dealing with colleagues, Freud, or the numerous women in his life.
As might be expected, the most interesting sections have to do with the interactions through letter and personal meetings with Freud himself and the other eminent members of Freud's inner circle. We see how a very short man who worries about overcoming his common name becomes a "true believer" in the theory and practice of psychoanalysis and is able to make a distinguished life for himself on the heels of one of the giants of his time.
Jones appears to have been the right person at the right time, attaching himself to Freud and becoming, as he liked to boast, "the pre-eminent psychoanalyst in the English-speaking world." His strong personal presence, intellectual and administrative abilities, skill at political in-fighting, and faithfulness to Freud all made him, if not a "wizard," at least an indispensable right-hand man who stayed true to his master until the end. If nothing else, we owe Jones a debt of gratitude for his courageous act of personally orchestrating the immigration of Freud and his entourage out of Vienna during the Nazi take-over and his crowning achievement of his three volume biography of Freud.
I enjoyed reading this biography, learning a good deal more about Ernest Jones than I had known, and came away with a sharper appreciation for his place in the pantheon of central early psychoanalytic figures.
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