chapter
14 Pages

Introduction

WithMichael Gerard Plastow

The work of Sabina Spielrein and her original contributions to psychoanalytic theory have been obscured by the emphasis that has been placed upon her personal story, and in particular upon the love affair that developed with her analyst, Carl Jung. Aldo Carotenuto’s own contribution to his volume reads like a hagiography of Jung, one which produces a devaluation of Sabina Spielrein and her work. Carotenuto even revises Jung’s original diagnosis of Spielrein of hysteria, to that of psychosis, a diagnosis that has since been echoed by others, such as Bruno Bettelheim. The subtitle of Carotenuto’s book is Sabina Spielrein between Jung and Freud. This exemplifies the emphasis that has been placed on a triangle in which Spielrein is always to be found between Jung and Sigmund Freud, and never present in her own right. In her personal writing Spielrein often discusses and writes poetry and songs, and in her scientific writings she often draws upon poetry and poets.