Sigmund Freud: Das Unheimliche [The Uncanny] (1312 words)

  • Scott Brewster (University of Lincoln)

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In this essay, which has become of signal importance for psychoanalytic and critical theory, Freud sets out to trace the nature of the uncanny, “that class of the frightening which leads back to what is known of old and long familiar” (340). In his opening remarks, Freud observes that almost nothing has been written on the uncanny in relation to aesthetics, although he refers in passing to Ernst Jentsch’s 1906 essay “The Psychology of the Uncanny”. In fact, Freud mirrors Jentsch’s approach to the subject: after an initial concern with the etymology of the uncanny, he collects “all those properties of persons, things, sense impressions, experiences and situations which arouse in us the feeling of uncanniness”, then …

Brewster, Scott. "Das Unheimliche". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 November 2002
[, accessed 28 October 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Psychoanalysis