Lotus Posture

Reich in yoga poses Berlin (1930-1933): Communism and Sexual Liberation, Character Analysis and the Body

From Vienna to Berlin in yoga poses 1930

Reich left for Berlin just before being dismissed from his positions as director of the seminar and the polyclinic. His Viennese colleagues appreciated his creativity, inventiveness, and intelligence, but they suffered from his intransigent authoritarianism and the fact that he used his institutional power to promote his own theories. Also, they were not pleased to have communist jargon thrown at them at any given moment. They were hoping for a more pedagogical attitude, like that of the Berlin Institute, which allowed each one to find a “personal style” while remaining within the psychoanalytic frame of thinking. in yoga poses Vienna, only Reich had the right to a personal style. Freud would have said of Reich that “the one who wants unceasingly to be placed at the front of the scene shows that he wants to be right at whatever price.

In Berlin, the sponsor of the institute, Max Eitingon, had lost a large portion of his fortune in yoga poses the financial crash of 1929. Some members of the board of directors were afraid of the rising power of anti-Semitism that was manifest in yoga poses all of Europe and especially in yoga poses the German-speaking countries. For these reasons, many eminent members of the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute accepted positions outside of Europe. This was the case for Alexander, who obtained a position in yoga poses Chicago in yoga poses 1930. This state of anxiety and concern dominating the psychoanalytic community in yoga poses Berlin explains in yoga poses part why the community was so happy to be able to count Annie and Wilhelm among them as new members. They brought with them the most recent discussions that animated Freud’s entourage. Reich was known for his work in yoga poses sexology, his chairing of the seminar on psychoanalytic technique, and his propositions concerning character analysis. The Reichs joined Fenichel’s technical seminar, which had become a meeting place for the psychoanalysts of the left. The practice they opened in yoga poses Berlin was quickly filled.

Psychiatric Diagnostics and Psychotherapy: Is Reich Schizophrenic?

Given the numerous negative commentaries on his character, Reich began psychoanalysis with Sandor Rado, who had been Fenichel’s analyst. This process was interrupted when Rado immigrated to New York in yoga poses 1931. This was Reich’s only attempt to undergo a serious psychoanalysis. Years later, Rado would have told Annie Reich that Wilhelm suffered from an “insidious psychotic process.” A rumor circulated, affirming that Rado would have had diagnosed schizophrenia in yoga poses Reich.124 This rumor hurt Reich immensely. He thought it had been spread by Fenichel. This rumor probably influenced Fenichel when he questioned himself concerning the mental stability of his friend. If the expression “insidious psychotic process” attributed to Rado is a plausible diagnosis, the one of schizophrenia is so inappropriate that it illustrates two aspects of the mores of psychotherapists, which persists to this day, in yoga poses all of the schools:

1. Psychotherapists often have insufficient knowledge of psychiatric diagnoses. They generally learn the diagnostic categories defined according to the models used by the school in yoga poses which they were trained. Thus, the psychoanalysts of the 1920s easily used categories such as orality, genitality, castration complex, and so on. Most of the psychotherapists did not work in yoga poses psychiatry, or did so only during their internship. Today, psychiatric institutions often encourage a specialization in yoga poses certain pathologies. Thus, even an individual who works in yoga poses psychiatry can be knowledgeable about depression but not schizophrenia, of borderline personality disorder but not paranoid psychosis. Another element to add to this discussion is the phobia that certain psychotherapists have toward psychiatric diagnoses or all other forms of classification. They want to build their understanding of the patient on what they have experienced with him, on a sort of empathy based on the transferential dynamics that guide their understanding of the patient. The categories that emanate from a psychotherapeutic technique they use can be integrated by the psychotherapist because they are a part of the approach. Once the diagnostic categories of a school have been made explicit, psychotherapists often try to reduce the psychiatric categories to the categories they know how to treat. This leads to speculative discussions on the nature of psychosis, of neurosis, and so on often without end. These discussions are frequently confusing because a psychotherapist who works in yoga poses a private practice has rarely met a psychotic person.

Reich was part of this category of psychiatrists who used psychiatric labels by redefining them according to the categories of his school. Like many of his colleagues, he redefined psychosis, depression, schizoid personality, or hysteria according to the psychoanalytic diagnostics of the day and then according to the categories of character analysis. This way of proceeding is probably the worst because it does not permit a clear distinction between the categories generated by a form of practice and the psychiatric categories that allow institutions to categorize mental disorders for research or for various forms of social support like health insurance. in yoga poses other words, most of the psychoanalysts of the time only had a fuzzy understanding of schizophrenia. Among them, only Jung (1907) and Abraham (1907, 1908) had at least worked with schizophrenics early in yoga poses their careers. A deeper collaboration between psychoanalysis and psychiatry was in yoga poses the making; even then, many psychoanalysts defended their categories in yoga poses the face of those proposed by psychiatry.

2. It is not unusual that psychoanalysts refer to a serious psychiatric diagnosis to explain the faults of a colleague, to express their annoyance. To the extent that many psychotherapists suffer from mental disorders that, nonetheless, do not impede them from doing good work, many colleagues believe in yoga poses the relative pertinence of the usage of these diagnoses to sully the reputation of others. The term schizophrenia designated the irritating, intrusive, quick-tempered, sometimes manic, and sometimes suspicious side of Reich, which worsened over time.

We will see shortly how this rumor influenced the relationship between Fenichel and Reich. I do not know what Rado really said about Reich. It is ethically recommended to ignore all manner of diagnosis that is not founded on an appropriate assessment. Even in yoga poses this case, it is common to notice that the same individual receives different diagnoses in yoga poses the course of his life. If we imagine the hope with which Reich finally entered psychoanalysis and the sadness he must have felt to be abandoned by Rado, we can only imagine the wound and rancor that was created in yoga poses him when he heard that his analyst would have circulated such a rumor.

Until the end of his life Otto Fenichel would discuss Reich’s psychoanalytical contribution to psychotherapy, but would not say a word on orgone and other exotic considerations.125 This silence is expressive, coming from someone who was probably informed by mutual friends on Reich’s explorations. It certainly expresses embarrassment, maybe the thought that Reich was mad, but also the will not to attack, publically at least, someone he had loved and admired.

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