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The Book Club

Mikkel Borch-Jacobsen: Freud’s Patients

September 28, 2021

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In this week’s Book Club podcast I’m joined by Mikkel Borch-Jacobsen, a historian of psychoanalysis whose latest book is Freud’s Patients: A Book of Lives. Mikkel has sifted through the archives to discover the real stories anonymized in the case studies on which Sigmund Freud based his theories, and the lives of the patients who submitted to analysis on the great man’s original couch. What he discovered is startling. Mikkel tells me how Freud falsified the data to fit his theories, kept incurable cases coming back week after week to keep the fees rolling in — and how the global industry of Freudian analysis resembles a religious cult more than a science.

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The Book Club

The Book Club

Literary interviews and discussions on the latest releases in the world of publishing, from poetry through to physics. Presented by Sam Leith.

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