5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Thoughtful, refined, and challenging account,
This review is from: Freud (The Routledge Philosophers) (Paperback)
There have been several books that examine Freud and psychoanalysis philosophically: Cavell, Gardner, Wollheim, Cioffi amongst others. This book is perhaps closest to Wollheim's in that it is both very philosophical yet also sympathetic to Freud's project and addresses his writings in a systematic and coherent manner. Lear writes very well and one can learn a lot from this book: it is challenging and has forced me to re-read much of Freud as Lear's interpretation attacked some of my long-held prejudices and beliefs about Freud's work. Lear however is more than just a commentator on Freud - his book addresses the work of other writers on psychoanalysis, such as those listed above, but more importantly, puts Freud's arguments in the context of contemporay concerns in the philosophy of mind and psychology, through the use of Davidson and others.
I'd recommend this to all philosophers and all thoughtful mental health professionals: the few quibbles I have lie in his use of developmental psychology and in that, if anything, he applies a Davidson Principle of Charity too charitably to Freud!