The Freud Series: Which Is True, Not 6 Minutes The Freud series is coming out of Netflix, which does not shed much light on the father of psychoanalysis. Instead, it presents a fascinating, albeit alternative, picture of life in Austria in the late 19th century.
People are still interested in the life of Sigmund Freud. No matter where you are, you are sure to find someone to discuss Freud with. Thanks to this interest, Netflix decided to create the TV series Freud, which reflects the life and work of this Austrian neurologist. However, the show doesn’t clarify much. Rather, it adds even more confusion.
In a real sense, the series should be considered historical fiction. This is because it provides very little accurate historical, biographical, and academic data. In fact, this series depicts a different reality and reflects how Freud could use his psychoanalytic skills to solve crimes.
Marvin Kren noted that he wanted young and modern audiences to be interested in the show and its plots, which is one of the reasons why he didn’t want it to look too historically correct.
Freud’s series is also a mixture of contemporary, provocative and historical elements. Why confuse the father of psychoanalysis with crime and spiritism? Wasn’t there enough controversy and confusion about his character?
We don’t think so. In fact, this interest in turning him into a character mixed with fiction is nothing new. In this article, we’ll talk about previous films and art forms around Freud and clarify the truth about the latest Netflix original.
Great interest in the movie behind Freud
In our time, Freud’s work is studied more in the humanities than in the faculties of natural sciences. His popularity is not directly related to his scientific work. However, Freud had the advantage of being an incredibly good writer who illustrated psychoanalysis with references to the work of great artists such as Shakespeare, Dostoevsky, and Leonardo da Vinci.
In a sense, it is thanks to art and film that his works and theoretical assumptions are of interest to the public. For example, Stefan Marianski of the Freud Museum in London said: “You don’t need to read Freud to live in a world where he is important, or think like Freudian.”
On the other hand, Nicholas Ray, a professor at the University of Leeds, says his work has been crafted to be softer and transformed into a cozy and calming imagination. Thus, it fits better with our current popular culture.
Besides, this happened not only in Freud’s series. This is also evident when it comes to virtually all of Woody Allen’s writings, either in the father-son dynamics in Space Empire, or in the events of Back to the Future, as in many novels by Virginia Woolf and James Joyce. This also applies to Salvador Dali and the Surrealists, as well as The Sopranos, Fraser and the 2011 film A Dangerous Method with Viggo Mortensen.
Previous attempts to create a detective series with Freud
The 2006 novel Interpretation of Murder (Jed Rubenfeld) explores Freud, who solved the murder case. Background Wednesday was Freud’s first and last visit to New York in 1909.
In 2014, Frank Spotnitz, director of archive X, was about to write Freud: The Secret Book. In this series, he set out to use Freud’s theories to solve unsolved cases. But the series was never realized.
What is true and what is not in Freud’s series
Freud was born in Freiberg (a city which is now called the Device and is located in the Czech Republic). His family moved to Leipzig and then settled permanently in Vienna.
Very little information can be extracted from this series. We’ll look at some of them.
Date of his medical research
He studied medicine at the University of Vienna and worked there in the city hospital. He graduated from this university as a physician in 1881. Later, in 1885, he received his degree in habilitation and began his career as a professor of neuropathology at the same university.
The series is set in 1886, so it fits with his interesting theory and consideration of the first real cases.
Freud first tried cocaine when he was very healthy. He actually called it “miracle cure.” In 1884, he wrote an article entitled “Uber Coca”, in which he expressed his love for this substance, as he was struck by its physical and psychological effects. It was only later that he discovered that he was actually addicted to it.
Eight episodes from Netflix successfully investigate his cocaine addiction.
His early psychoanalytic practice with Breuer
1886 He began his private practice in Vienna and began using hypnosis in their work. We must point out that hypnosis was not a popular method at the time.
Interestingly, Freud’s series explores this part of his life. In fact, it requires an attitude to the method of his friend Joseph Breuer, a doctor with whom he collaborated on research on hysteria.
Highlights of his work Breuer’s experience of treating hysterical patient Anna O. Due to the inconsistency of the results, Freud eventually abandoned the technique of hypnosis and then developed what he called free association. It is also important to note here that the series does not fully clarify Freud’s entire relationship with Breuer.
His romance with Fleur Salome, an aspect described in the Freud series
There is another aspect of the show that seems to be based on true events. It is about the character Fleur Salome, a medium who gets a role in the series to solve crimes. The inspiration for this character was the psychoanalyst Lou Andreas-Salome.
It was always rumored that Freud and Lou Andreas-Salomé had feelings for each other. However, no one was able to prove this. To be precise, the series takes place in the 1880s, however, historians believe that the two people did not know each other until 1911.
Sigmund Freud never participated in the investigation of criminal cases and did not help in solving crimes of any kind. This show also features him as a participant in occult spiritism and divination sessions. However, there is no historical evidence that this could have happened.
Anyway, he loved to read detective novels like Sherlock Holmes. So even if he didn’t solve real-life crimes, he was definitely a fan of this kind of work.
As you can see, in the eight episodes of Freud, very little can be said about the real Freud. However, some of his concepts and ideas clearly sparked the imagination and construction of this fictional story. In addition, the environment and atmosphere presented are so atmospheric that they can clearly spark interest in a more detailed study of the characters, as it really was.
This might interest you. Read “Post-Freud Mind Research: Psychoanalytic Schools and Authors”
How did Freud’s work affect the world? And what happened after Freud? Read more about the various psychoanalytic sections and authors after Freud in this article.