Wilhelm Reich: Psychoanalyst and Radical Naturalist
Reich was seventeen years old at the outbreak of World War I and had already witnessed the suicides of his mother and father. A native of Vienna and a disciple of Freud, he broke with the master in his classic The Function of the Orgasm (1927). In 1939, having fled Hitler’s Germany, he established a visionary new school of psychology in America.
In The Mass Psychology of Fascism, Reich first took the now commonplace position that oppressive social structures are rooted in individual sexual behaviour and repression. But the psychoanalytic community was made uncomfortable by this claim, and it was said—by the time of Reich’s death in an American prison on dubious charges brought by the federal government—that Reich had squandered his genius and serrendered to his own paranoia and psychosis, an opinion still responsible for the neglect and misapprehession of Reich’s contribution to psychology.
In this transfixing psychobiography, Corrington illuminates the themes and obsessions that unify Reich’s work and reports on Reich’s fascinating, unrelenting one man quest to probe the ultimate structures of self, world, and cosmos.
Wilhelm Reich, Robert S. Corrington, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2003
Hardback. Octavo. Bound in blue cloth. Ex-library. Stamps to endpapers and title page. Appears to be unread. Dust jacket in vey good condition. A tight copy. 297 pp.