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The renowned French Publishing house, Edition Gallimard, has published the French edition of the letters between two of the world’s greatest psychologists, Austria’s Sigmund Freud and Eugen Bleuler from Switzerland. The book documents correspondence exchanged between 1904-1937, and is a treasure to psychology and psychoanalysis experts and libraries across the world.
The letters are important both historically and scientifically, as they unveil the convergence and the divergence between the two psychiatrists, and how they thought about treating various patients, particularly those suffering from autism and schizophrenia. Bleuler, for instance, believed in listening to patients and trying to understand their pain. Freud, however, was interested in observing schizophrenic patients who wanted to live in isolation.
Eugen Bleuler – who was the director of the psychiatric clinic in the public hospital in Zurich in Switzerland – continued to focus on patients’ neurological conditions. Even though he had different definitions of psychological disorders than Sigmund Freud, the letters reveal that both agreed on the importance of testing and analysis to treat their patients.