The Story of Sidonie C.: Freud's famous case of 'female homosexuality'

Editor : Ines Reider, Editor : Diana Voigt

The Story of Sidonie C.: Freud's famous case of 'female homosexuality'

Book Details

  • Publisher : Helena History Press
  • Published : April 2020
  • Cover : Paperback
  • Pages : 300
  • Category :
    Culture and Psychoanalysis
  • Catalogue No : 97114
  • ISBN 13 : 9781943596126
  • ISBN 10 : 9781943596
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Now finally available in English, this biography of Margarethe Csonka-Trautenegg (1900-1999) offers a fully-rounded picture of a willful and psychologically complex aesthete. As Freud's never-before-identified "case of female homosexuality", her analysis continues to spark often heated psychoanalytic debate. Margarethe's ("Sidonie's") experiences spanned the twentieth century.

Jewish by birth, she fled upper-class life in Vienna for Cuba to escape the Nazis, only to return post-war to a "leaden" city and relative poverty. Fleeing again, she took various jobs abroad, and returned permanently only in old age. The interviews and taped oral histories that form the basis of this book were produced during the final five of her years. Well-researched historical background information supplements the story of Margarethe's journey across time and continents.

Reviews and Endorsements

The Story of Sidonie C. is more than the biography of a woman so complex she baffled Dr. Freud, it is also a biography of the twentieth
century, its political disasters and social changes.” - Andreas Brunner co-director of QWIEN (Center for Queer History, Vienna).

"You have such shrewd eyes. I would never want to have you as my enemy.” As “Sidonie C.” recalled many decades later, these were Sigmund Freud’s parting words upon ending his treatment of her in 1919 . Her story will appeal to a broad range of readers interested in general biography, twentieth-century history, queer and gender studies and culture studies. But especially for students of psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic history, it offers a unique opportunity. It is rare for psychoanalysts to learn anything about their patients’ lives after they leave treatment, much less to read a full biography. The English speaking analytic audience is now in the fortunate position of being able to pursue the development of this intriguing woman and to draw their own conclusions regarding Freud’s and Lacan’s insights into her. - Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein is a practicing analyst in Vienna, a member of the Wiener Arbeitskreis fur Psychoanalyse (WAP) and of the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PIN C). She chairs the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Sigmund Freud Museum, Vienna, and is on the faculty of the New York University Post-Doctoral Program for Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy.

About the Editor(s)

Ines Rieder (1954-2015), writer, activist, archivist, curator, translator, historian and internationalist

Diana Voigt (1960–2009), scholar of German language and literature and
theatre arts. Diana was a literary agent and an ecopsychologist
studying the relationship between humans and nature.

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