Friday, 9 January 2009

‘Bringing them the Plague’: Freud in USA (1909). Inner Circle Seminar 142 (6 September 2009 )

A. A. Brill      Ernest Jones      Sándor Ferenczi
Sigmund Freud      Stanley Hall      C. G. Jung

Clark University, Worcester MA, September 1909

‘Bringing them the Plague’

A Centenary Revaluation of
‘Five Lectures on Psycho-Analysis’
Clark University, Worcester MA

7–11 September 1909

Anthony Stadlen

Inner Circle Seminar No. 142
Sunday 6 September 2009
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Lacan used to say that Jung told him in 1954 that Freud had said in 1909, when they glimpsed the Statue of Liberty on reaching the United States, ‘They don’t realise we’re bringing them the plague.’ What did Freud mean by this joke? Does psychoanalysis detract from human freedom? Why did Freud say America was a ‘gigantic mistake’? Today, we examine Freud’s five improvised lectures at Clark University. We focus on the interface of maximum conflict: between the American assumption that psychoanalysis was part of psychiatry and medicine, and Freud’s insistence on its autonomy as ‘secular care of the soul’.

Venue: Durrants Hotel, 26–32 George Street, Marylebone, London W1H 5BJ
Cost: Students £108, others £135; some bursaries; mineral water, coffee, tea, biscuits, liquorice allsorts included
Apply to: Anthony Stadlen, ‘Oakleigh’, 2A Alexandra Avenue, London N22 7XE
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8888 6857 E-mail:
For further information on seminars, visit:

The Inner Circle Seminars were founded by Anthony Stadlen in 1996 as an ethical, existential, phenomenological search for truth in psychotherapy. They have been kindly described by Thomas Szasz as ‘Institute for Advanced Studies in the Moral Foundations of Human Decency and Helpfulness’. But they are independent of all institutes, schools and colleges.

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