By Daniel Burston
This publication explores the existence and paintings of a missed determine within the historical past of psychoanalysis, Karl Stern, who introduced Freudian concept and perform to Catholic (and Christian) audiences round the world.
Karl Stern used to be a German-Jewish neurologist and psychiatrist who fled Germany in 1937 – first to London, then to Canada, the place he taught at McGill collage and the collage of Ottawa, changing into leader of Psychiatry at a number of significant clinics in Ottawa and Montreal among 1952 and 1968, whilst he went into inner most perform. In 1951 he released The Pillar of Fire, a memoir that chronicled his early life, early life and early maturity, his scientific and psychiatric education, his first research, and his serial flirtations with Jewish Orthodoxy, Marxism and Zionism – all in the course of the galloping Nazification of Germany. It additionally explored the long-standing inner-conflicts that preceded Stern’s conversion to Catholicism in 1943.
The Pillar of Fire was once a run-away top vendor, and was once via a sequence of outstanding books and papers that suggest Freud (and psychoanalysis ordinarily) to Christian audiences, together with The 3rd Revolution (1954), The Flight from Woman (1965) and Love and Success (1975). Stern firmly believed within the compatibility of technology and religion, and was once a celebrity of the Catholic lecture circuit, the place he usually spoke in regards to the evils of anti-Semitism. His friendship and correspondence with Thomas Merton, psychiatrist/psychoanalyst Gregory Zilboorg, philosophers Jacques Maritain and Gabriel Marcel, activist Dorothy Day and novelist Graham Greene (among others) shed significant mild on Catholic highbrow existence within the chilly struggle period, and the problems dealing with Stern, whose simultaneous efforts to wrestle Christian anti-Semitism and to combine Freudian inspiration into the center of Catholic philosophy met with combined effects.
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Extra info for A Forgotten Freudian: The Passion of Karl Stern
And this was a theme he returned to frequently in the decades ahead. Given the political climate in which his analysis was conducted, it seems likely that Stern’s emphasis on Laudenheimer’s humanism and pluralism were not merely intended to describe him, but to dispel any negative misconceptions people familiar with that period of history may have formed about his analyst. Why? Stern neglected to mention this, but in 1933, just one year after his analysis commenced, C. G. Jung became President of the newly created International General Medical Society.
80). With all these novelists in the mix, he was suddenly in his element. 24 A F O R G OT T E N F R E U D I A N Despite his introverted personality, and distaste for the bureaucracy and anonymity, Stern thrived. One teacher at Moabit Hospital who made a deep impression on Stern was Professor Ernst Haase. As Stern recalled, Haase was a shrewd yet compassionate doctor who conducted a clinic for alcoholics and drug addicts from the slums surrounding the hospital. Whether he was dealing with a homeless, unemployed middle-aged man or a young woman recently thrust into prostitution, said Stern […] he penetrated right into the core of the psychological and social situation.
Meanwhile, the relentless Nazification of Germany was frightening to behold, though the Nazi movement was less homogeneous than many of its critics imagined, at least in its initial stages. For example, Dr. Leo Mager, a senior faculty member, a geneticist, epidemiologist and an early member of the Nazi party was widely rumored by be a candidate for the Bavarian Minister of Health. But he mistook the term “socialism” in the phrase “Nation Socialism” to be more than a mere slogan. When Hitler seized power in March of 1933, the Nazi brass dispelled his illusions on this score, so he promptly handed in his membership card—an act of great courage, in the circumstances.