Coffee with Freud

Author(s) : Brett Kahr, Illustrator : Alison Bechdel

Part of The Interviews with Icons series - more in this series

Coffee with Freud

Book Details

  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Published : March 2017
  • Cover : Paperback
  • Pages : 336
  • Category :
  • Category 2 :
    Popular Psychology
  • Catalogue No : 37356
  • ISBN 13 : 9781782203438
  • ISBN 10 : 1782203435

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Also by Alison Bechdel

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This is the second volume in Brett Kahr’s ‘Interviews with Icons’ series, following on from Tea with Winnicott. Professor Kahr, himself a highly regarded psychoanalyst, turns his attention to the work of the father of psychoanalysis. The book is lavishly illustrated by Alison Bechdel, winner of the MacArthur Foundation ‘Genius’ Award.

Sigmund Freud pays another visit to Vienna’s renowned Café Landtmann, where he had often enjoyed reading newspapers and sipping coffee. Freud explains how he came to invent psychoanalysis, speaks bluntly about his feelings of betrayal by Carl Gustav Jung, recounts his flight from the Nazis, and so much more, all the while explaining his theories of symptom formation and psychosexuality.

Framed as a ‘posthumous interview’, the book serves as the perfect introduction to the work of Freud while examining the context in which he lived and worked. Kahr examines his legacy and considers what Freud has to teach us. In a world where manifestations of sexuality and issues of the mind are ever more widely discussed, the work of Sigmund Freud is more relevant than ever. This book is an ideal primer on Freud’s work for anyone from the psychoanalytic professional to the interested layperson.

Reviews and Endorsements

‘Brett Kahr has been teaching the works of Freud since 1979. In this fascinating book he presents his “posthumous interview” with Freud from their “get-togethers” at Vienna’s legendary Café Landtmann. When I was the Fulbright-Freud Visiting Scholar of Psychoanalysis in 2006, I had my office at 19 Berggasse and enjoyed drinking coffee at Café Landtmann where I also “talked” with Freud, but not in such a balanced and layered way. Reading Kahr’s book made me envious of the author, who has found a creative method of introducing the great professor both as the father of psychoanalysis and as a private man.’
- Professor Vamik Volkan, Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia, and Senior Erik Erikson Scholar at the Austen Riggs Center

‘Brett Kahr is one of the best historians of psychoanalysis writing today, and able to deal with the most difficult topics authoritatively and wittily, and with so light a touch that they become accessible to all. The twelve imaginary dialogues that make up this book pay particular attention to Freud’s early professional struggles and to the ways in which these shaped both his own life and the lives of countless analysts and patients in the decades that followed. The result is a wonderfully human and highly original picture of a brilliant man and his ideas.’
- Dr Neil Vickers, Reader in English Literature and Director of the Centre for the Humanities and Health at King’s College London, University of London

‘As a mental health professional, and as the granddaughter of Freud’s pupil Dr Franz Alexander, I found this book pure joy. Coffee with Freud is an absolute page-turner that benefits from beautiful descriptive language, secrets revealed, and great humour. Freud really comes to life in this conversation that is witty, personal, compelling, and insightful. An ingenious means to travel through time to meet the father of psychoanalysis.”
- Ilonka Venier Alexander, author of The Life and Times of Franz Alexander: From Budapest to California and co-editor of Love and Survival in Budapest: The Memoir of Artur Renyi

‘“Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar,” said Freud. But do you realise that Freud never actually spoke these words? This is just one fascinating snippet revealed by this amazing volume. And sometimes a book is just a book – but not this one. This is pure genius. The dialogue reveals a dazzling knowledge of Freud’s life and milieu. Coffee with Freud is an exquisite gift to those seeking insight into one of the most influential minds of the last three centuries.’
- Professor John Nuttall, Professor of Integrative Psychotherapy, Assistant Dean, and Head of the School of Psychotherapy and Psychology, Regent’s University London

‘Brett Kahr has created a whole new category of psychoanalytic communication. Eminently readable, accurate, full of great illustrations… and fun! Long may the series flourish.’
- Dr Anton Obholzer, Emeritus Consultant and formerly Chairman of the Tavistock Clinic and Chief Executive of the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust in London, and Senior Consultant, Tavistock Consultancy Service

About the Author(s)

Professor Brett Kahr has worked in the mental health profession for over forty years. A clinical registrant of both the British Psychoanalytic Council and the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy, he is Senior Fellow at the Tavistock Institute of Medical Psychology in London and, also, Visiting Professor of Psychoanalysis and Mental Health at Regents University London.

Over the decades, Kahr has worked in the National Health Service and in private practice in Central London with both individuals and couples. He is currently Consultant Psychotherapist to The Balint Consultancy and, additionally, Consultant in Psychology at The Bowlby Centre. He also serves as Chair of the Scholars Committee of the British Psychoanalytic Council, as well as Senior Clinical Research Fellow in Psychotherapy and Mental Health at the Centre for Child Mental Health.

Professor Kahr is the Honorary Director of Research at Freud Museum London and, also, an Honorary Fellow of the museum. Previously, he served as Deputy Director of the International Campaign for the Freud Museum from 1986-1987 and, more recently, as Trustee of both Freud Museum London and of Freud Museum Publications from 2011-2020.

In addition to his clinical practice, Kahr has collaborated with the media in order to promote mental health knowledge. Formerly Resident Psychotherapist on BBC Two, broadcasting about mental health issues to millions of listeners, he has appeared on over one thousand radio and television programmes. In recognition of his work in this field, he has become Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Media and Communication at Bournemouth University. The United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy recently awarded him an Honorary Fellowship for his contributions to public service.

Professor Kahr is the author of sixteen books and series editor of more than seventy-five additional titles on a wide range of subjects.

His solo-authored books cover a range of topics, including clinical investigations of extreme psychopathology and forensic mental health, such as his titles, Bombs in the Consulting Room: Surviving Psychological Shrapnel, as well as Dangerous Lunatics: Trauma, Criminality, and Forensic Psychotherapy. He has also written on Sex and the Psyche, a Waterstones Non-Fiction Bestseller and a chosen title in the Sunday Times Book Club, based on his study of the traumatic, unconscious roots of over 20,000 adult sexual fantasies, as well as Celebrity Mad: Why Otherwise Intelligent People Worship Fame. His historically orientated books include the very first biography of Donald Winnicott, entitled D.W. Winnicott: A Biographical Portrait, which received the Gradiva Award for Biography, as well as the popular titles, Life Lessons from Freud, Tea with Winnicott, and Coffee with Freud. Most recently, he has released Freud's Pandemics: Surviving Global War, Spanish Flu, and the Nazis, the inaugural title in the new Freud Museum London Series of history books, published by Karnac Books exploring not only how Sigmund Freud navigated the tragedies of his own lifetime but, also, how he would have handled the COVID-19 pandemic and what lessons our world leaders might learn from those pioneering psychoanalytical concepts.

Professor Kahr has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Karnac Books and has produced many books with this publisher and has also served as series editor or series co-editor or consultant to four of its monograph series. More recently, he has become Series Editor of the Freud Museum London Series, hosted by Karnac Books in association with Freud Museum London, as well as Advisory Editor-in-Chief to Karnac Books and to its sibling imprint Confer Books.

More titles by Brett Kahr

Alison Bechdel is an American cartoonist. Originally best known for the long-running comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For, she came to critical success in 2006 with her graphic memoir Fun Home, which was subsequently adapted as a musical and won the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2015. She is a 2014 recipient of the MacArthur 'Genius' Award.

More titles by Alison Bechdel

Customer Reviews

Our customers have given this title an average rating of 5 out of 5 from 1 review(s), add your own review for this title.

Antony Balfour on 26/03/2017 14:59:08

Rating1Rating2Rating3Rating4Rating5 (5 out of 5)

Can't recommend this enough. You really feel as though you're meeting the great man.

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