Everyone has heard of the Oedipus complex. Freud's ideas have left a profound impression on the modern cultural imagination. But where did Freud's Oedipus come from? And how did he come up with the phallic mother? How did Freud invent a new way of reading literature and art? And what intellectual history made Freud's psychoanalysis of religion and civilisation possible? Just as Freud exhorted us to search out the origins of our desires and identities - to become a modern Oedipus - so this series of public lectures excavates the origins of Freud's ideas. We will learn that there would have been no psychoanalysis without Freud's obsession with the ancient world.
Dr Daniel Orrells' book 'Sex: Antiquity and it Legacy' is available from the Museum shop through our Order & Collect service: order a copy now and collect it at the event!
Week one - examines the importance of ancient ideas about desire and pleasure for Freud's understanding of gender and sexuality.
Week two - we will consider the significance of ancient texts for Freud's discussions of literature and art.
Week three - will look at how Freud's discussions of Judaism, Christianity and modern civilisation emerged out of his interest in ancient religion. When Freud formulated the contours of the modern individual in modern society, he could not help but look back to antiquity to understand who we are.
Dr Daniel Orrells is Lecturer in Ancient Greek Language and Literature at King's College London. His research examines the presence of classical antiquity in modern cultural, literary and intellectual history. His most recent book 'Sex: Antiquity and its Legacy' offers a fresh, new narrative about the importance of the ancient world for the development of sexology and psychoanalysis