Time is short
In this chapter, the author highlights the socio-cultural reality at the time when Sigmund Freud wrote the “Two principles” in Austria. He does this not only out of historical interest. He emphasises how, at that time in Austria, and elsewhere the pace of human life was increasing with rapid cultural changes and had been for several decades. The author begins with Freud’s “Two principles” and later to Beyond the Pleasure Principle. He focuses particularly on art; one of the four civilising attempts described by Freud to transcend the pleasure principle, the others being religion, science, and education. He then highlights the crucial difference between art and the other attempts. The author develops the argument that artistic creation becomes part of the culture that both simultaneously expresses and contains a collective hostility to reality. The reality of time interests the psychoanalyst in more than one respect.