02/24/2024, 20:49, Vienna  DEUTSCH / ENGLISH

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Freud, A Day in the Life

Author: Todd Raymond Dufresne


Here’s a typical day in Freud’s life. From Monday to Saturday, Freud woke at 7:00. His wife Martha would have already laid out his daily items, from toothbrush to clothing. After dressing, Freud ate breakfast and then sat for the barber who, on daily house calls, trimmed his beard. Freud’s housekeeper, Paula Fichtl, showed patients into the waiting room in his home office at 19 Berggasse, where Freud saw patients from 8:00 or 9:00 until 1:00. At 1:00 Freud ate the big meal of the day, sometimes in the presence of guests, and from 2:00 to 3:00 went for a brisk walk along the Ringstrasse – not quite Kant in his regularity, but close. During these walks, often trailing one of his children, Freud might stop for personal items like cigars and a newspaper, or drop off the mail. And at times his friendly followers, knowing his schedule, would catch up with him along the route. By 3:00 Freud was back at work and would see patients until as late as 9:00. After that it was a late supper, maybe a game of cards or conversation with his sister-in-law, Minna, or maybe he’d take another walk. After that Freud returned to his office where he edited, wrote, read, and researched his ideas, finally closing his day by answering his often-voluminous correspondence. In time Freud’s works would be collected in 23 (actually incomplete) volumes, while his correspondence, estimated to run to 35,000 letters, would appear posthumously in at least two dozen published volumes. Freud’s day ended at 1:00am – and sometimes later. Then he got up again at 7:00....

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