When Sigmund Freud Sent Theodor Herzl Fan Mail

Aug. 17 2022

On September 28, 1902, the psychologist Sigmund Freud wrote a letter to the founder of modern Zionism, Theodor Herzl, which was recently found in the Central Zionist Archive. Itamar Eichner writes:

The letter was written in German, [both men’s mother tongue], and in it, Freud recommends Herzl read his book The Interpretation of Dreams. Herzl and Freud lived on the same street in Vienna for many years, but never met in person. Freud, nevertheless, is said to have been an avid reader of Herzl’s pieces published in the Neue Freie Presse, a paper where the latter worked in as an editor. Freud also expressed interest in the World Zionist Congress, established in 1897 as the supreme organ of the Zionist Organization.

In 1898, Freud also apparently attended a play written by Herzl. However, the 1902 letter was the only recorded attempt made by the founder of psychoanalysis to contact Herzl.

In the letter, Freud wrote: “Esteemed Dr., following a recommendation of your colleague, the editor Mr. M., I’ve allowed myself to send you a copy of my book, published in 1900, about interpretations of dreams, as well as a short lecture on the subject. I don’t know if you’ll agree with Mr. M., but I beg you, keep it as a sign of my appreciation towards you, which I’ve felt—like many others—for the poet and fighter for our people’s human rights. With regards, Prof. Doc. Freud.”

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Read more at Ynet

More about: Austrian Jewry, Sigmund Freud, Theodor Herzl, Vienna

 

How the Death of Mahsa Amini Changed Iran—and Its Western Apologists

Sept. 28 2022

On September 16, a twenty-two-year-old named Mahsa Amini was arrested by the Iranian morality police for improperly wearing a hijab. Her death in custody three days later, evidently after being severely beaten, sparked waves of intense protests throughout the country. Since then, the Iranian authorities have killed dozens more in trying to quell the unrest. Nervana Mahmoud comments on how Amini’s death has been felt inside and outside of the Islamic Republic:

[I]n Western countries, the glamorizing of the hijab has been going on for decades. Even Playboy magazine published an article about the first “hijabi” news anchor in American TV history. Meanwhile, questioning the hijab’s authenticity and enforcement has been framed as “Islamophobia.” . . . But the death of Mahsa Amini has changed everything.

Commentators who downplayed the impact of enforced hijab have changed their tune. [Last week], CNN’s Christiane Amanpour declined an interview with the Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi, and the Biden administration imposed sanctions on Iran’s notorious morality police and senior officials for the violence carried out against protesters and for the death of Mahsa Amini.

The visual impact of the scenes in Iran has extended to the Arab world too. Arabic media outlets have felt the winds of change. The death of Mahsa Amini and the resulting protests in Iran are now top headlines, with Arab audiences watching daily as Iranian women from all age groups remove their hijabs and challenge the regime policy.

Iranian women are making history. They are teaching the world—including the Muslim world—about the glaring difference between opting to wear the hijab and being forced to wear it, whether by law or due to social pressure and mental bullying. Finally, non-hijabi women are not afraid to defy, proudly, their Islamist oppressors.

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Read more at Nervana

More about: Arab World, Iran, Women in Islam