‘The appeal of psychoanalysis’ explains why Freud's work became so popular. Freud did not invent the subconscious, but he was the first to apply it clinically. Despite his lack of interest in philosophy, it is believed that Nietzsche and Schopenhauer had an effect on him. Freud's work coincided with a general trend for reductionism, meaning all–encompassing theories were hugely popular. He also gained a great many adherents from the rise of secularism. This popularity combined with Freud's conviction and persuasiveness lent psychoanalysis an air of religiosity. Despite the many valid criticisms of him, Freud changed the way we think, and for that we will always be in his debt.