On the Wrong Side of History | Letters | Chicago Reader

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On the Wrong Side of History



Dear editor,

The treatment of psychoanalysis pioneer Carl Gustav Jung and his biographer Deirdre Bair at the hands of the New York Times and book reviewer Dinitia Smith (Hot Type, February 13) reminded me of the inquisition of Patrick J. Buchanan after the publication in 1999 of his book A Republic, Not an Empire.

Buchanan clearly sealed his fate when on page 256 he pointed out that Gertrude Stein suggested in 1937 that Hitler be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and that British senior statesman Lloyd George, "deeply alarmed at the appeal of communist ideology, visited the German dictator and came away captivated, declaring Hitler 'a really great man.'" After that Buchanan became a political leper, kicked out of his own Republican Party and garnering a paltry 500,000 votes in the 2000 presidential election.

Swiss-born C.G. Jung, who was founder of the first school of analytical psychology and the first president of the International Psychoanalytic Association, also sealed his fate when he lost a 1913 power struggle with Sigmund Freud, whose adherents to this day expect that we regard him as the father of psychoanalysis without competition, and when Jung (apparently naively) chose to serve the Nazi government in 1933, in much the way that Leni Riefenstahl did.

Author Deirdre Bair laments the extreme Smith review in the Times: "Dude, where's my book in this review?" Lamentably, the book got lost in the agenda.

Paul Thomas

N. Sheridan

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