Saturday, July 04, 2015

The Errors of Sigmund Freud

Sigmund Freud made a wrong analysis, and on it he built several other wrong analyses. He misinterpreted the memories of childhood sexual abuse for erotic fantasy. On this he built three wrong analyses that have had a horrible effect on the Western civilization: That children are sexual; that women are an incomplete gender possessing a penis envy; and that children are in love with the parent of the opposite gender and that love in adulthood is transference of that love.

As a parent, I would know if my daughter was sexual. She isn't. Children are curious, and their curiosity would be especially intense about things that are forbidden, such as sexuality. The claim that children are sexual has encouraged the very real wrong of pedophilia. If they think that the children are sexual, they may delude themselves into thinking that having sex with a child is OK. It is not OK; it is rightfully a crime.

Freud's claim about women was nothing but a generalization of the conditions in his time. In early 20th century Europe, the men had all the rights and powers, and the women were sufficiently schooled in the ideals of liberty and equality to want the rights and the powers that men had. We do not see women envying men in places such as Sweden, where women have the same rights and powers as the men. Nor do we see women envying men in the Middle East, where women accept the subservient position as part of their religion.

As to Freud's most famous claim: There is absolutely nothing wrong with children loving their parents. Children should love their parents, and parents should love their children. That doesn't mean that either party is sexually attracted to the other. I love my mother, but I am not sexually attracted to her. My daughter loves me, but she is not sexually attracted to me either.

Regarding love in adulthood, Freud's claim does not begin to pass the muster of reality. If love in adulthood had been a transference from a parent, then women raised by single mothers, men raised by single fathers, homosexuals raised by a single parent of the opposite gender, or orphans who were raised without either parent, would not fall in love in adulthood; and of course they do. At the time of Sigmund Freud, there were few single-parent households and fewer open homosexuals to study; now there are plenty of them. And what we have seen again and again is people from all kinds of backgrounds falling in love, including the backgrounds that do not have a transference figure.

Clearly Freud was a major thinker, and he should be commended for his intelligence, his courage and his willingness to work hard. But these errors have to go. It would be better for everyone if these errors had not been made. But now that they have been made, it falls up to us to correct them.


Blogger metaplec said...

Hi Ilya,
long time no see.
I see you moved to Australia.
Mayer Landau

10:22 PM  
Blogger Ilya Shambat said...

Mayer, great to hear from you. Send me your email address.

12:27 AM  

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