Criticism of Freudianism as Unscientific

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Sigmund Freud and his critics: Criticism of Freudianism as unscientific Sigmund Freud today is honored as the founder of modern psychoanalysis. His concept of the human psyche has been used to analyze everything from individual psychologies to the structure of Hamlet. But although Freud is often parodied, cited, and imitated in popular literature, his theories have fallen out of favor in the academic discipline of psychology he was so influential in founding. Courses in psychology devote a paucity of attention to Freud, and literary and cultural studies courses are more often apt to include a primer on the ego, id, and superego, versus psychology classes that attempt to train practitioners in the field. Historian Paul Robinson writes that the applicability of Freud to literary analysis is a symptom of his lack of scientific rigor: "In one respect, Freud might seem to be alive and well in the contemporary intellectual world. I am thinking of the prestige that psychoanalysis still enjoys in literary studies... [critic] Frederick Crews wrote: 'No sadder proof exists of the rift between literature and science than this new adherence to a Freudianism that is rapidly losing authority outside the circle of literary theory'" (Robinson, Introduction, 1993:1). This paper will attempt to explore why this is the case: why has Freud fallen out of favor in the field he founded. Why are the primary strengths of psychoanalytic theory viewed as lying within the field of literary theory

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