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Freud As Virgil: The Anthropologies Of Psychoanalysis And The Commedia

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Chapter Summary

The author explores three themes of correspondences. They are prophecy and citizenship; inheritance, development, fate, and character; and language, desire, and materialism. As the journey continues, however, things change gradually but dramatically. Up through the heyday of psychoanalysis in the 1950s, the idea of character as history-laden dominated our conceptions. The anthropologies of Freud and Dante share is a concern for the human soul, how the soul is organized, the ways in which the soul is held in bondage, and finally, the possibilities for redemption. Freud has been described as a humane pessimist. He is pessimistic in the sense that he cannot offer the kind of consolation that the pilgrim finds in paradise. Dante, on the other hand, is finally an optimist, but, in a way, inhumane. Finally, anger, which seeks the harm of one's neighbor, grows out of resentment.

Keywords: anthropologies; pilgrim; psychoanalysis



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