Sabina Spielrein: From Obscurity to the Silver Screen
John Kerr, author of A Dangerous Method: Jung, Freud and Sabina Spielrein, recounts the events leading to his book and to the recent film by David Cronenberg.
Friday, February 28
USM, Abromson Center, Room 216
Members: $20, Non-Members: $25
Sabina Spielrein played a crucial role—as patient, lover, student, confidante—in the early history of psychoanalysis. Yet, prior to 1977, virtually nothing was known about her. John Kerr will recount how he first came to be involved in reconstructing her life and career and how that led to his book in 1993 and to a 2011 film by David Cronenberg. The lecture will also reconsider her complementary involvements with Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud as represented in history—and in film. What was Jung’s original psychoanalytic treatment of her, and did it help? What was “Poetry” and why did it come to matter so much? Did Spielrein have a role in the split between Freud and Jung? Was Spielrein an early theorist of the “Death Instinct,” and if not, then why did both men say she was? Was she in fact the “anima”?
John Kerr trained as a clinical psychologist, and was senior editor at The Analytic Press for many years. He is the author of A Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud, and Sabina Spielrein and co-editor of Attachment Theory: Social, Developmental, and Clinical Perspectives. Currently, Mr. Kerr works as a private editor and is writing a play about Harry Stack Sullivan.