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Was Sigmund Freud a Freak?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sigmund Freud was a freak. Known throughout the world as an avant garde Austrian psychiatrist, few people were allowed to be as kinky as Sigmund was in his professional life. Although he did much work in psychoanalysis, he is best known for his redefining sexual desire as the primary motive of humans. This was big at the time. For before Freud sex was seen as a taboo subject relegated to the dark bedrooms of the world, devoid of life, absent of discovery. Freud changed that. Was Freud simply a dirty old man who turned his profession out, and the world out, with his studies? Was Freud gay? The debate has raged for years. What is not debatable is that he had an insatiable appetite for sex and was possibly obsessed by it. There was one external stimulus though that may have attributed to Freud's success: cocaine.
Freud was an avid user and proponent of cocaine as a stimulant as well as analgesic. He wrote several articles on the antidepressant qualities of the drug and he was influenced by his friend and confidant Wilhelm Fliess, who recommended cocaine for the treatment of the "nasal reflex neurosis."
When the Nazis came, Freud and his Ukrainian colleague, Max Schur, fled to London. There they advanced their studies, on no more a subject that Freud himself, who at that time had developed oral cancer due to heavy smoking. Schur assisted him in suicide after reading Freud's note: "My dear Schur, you certainly remember our first talk. You promised me then not to forsake me when my time comes. Now it is nothing but torture and makes no sense any more." Schur administered three doses of morphine over many hours that resulted in Freud's death on September 23, 1939.



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