Reading Questions for Five Lectures on Psychoanalysis

Chapter One:

  1. Freud says (p. 12) that "our hysterical patients suffer from reminiscences". What is the significance of this claim?
  2. What does Freud think the mind is like?

Chapter Two:

  1. What is "repression"?
  2. Freud's theory of the mind has sometimes been called a "hydraulic" theory. What could that mean?
  3. What is a symptom and why is it significant? (from both ch. 1 and 2)

Chapter Three:

  1. Why are jokes an example of distortion in everyday life?
  2. What does Freud think dreams are? How do dream life and normal life relate to each other?
  3. Why are "small faulty actions" significant?

Chapter Four:

  1. What does Freud mean when he says that infants have sexual inclinations? Why does this matter?
  2. What form does infantile sexuality take?
  3. What is a perversion, for Freud? How does it relate to a neurosis?
  4. How are Oedipus and Hamlet analogies of what Freud is trying to say in this chapter?

Chapter Five:

  1. What is transferrance and where does it come from?

Overall Questions:

  1. What is Freud's theory of the self?
  2. Is his theory of the self modern?
  3. Why does Freud think of himself as a scientist?
  4. How might Freud's scientific account be similar to Darwin's? To Marx's? How is it different?

More reading questions located here.