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p. 918. Art and literaturelocked

  • Anthony Storr

Abstract

‘Art and literature’ explores Freud's attitudes to art and artists. Freud believed that art stemmed from the sublimation of unsatisfied libido. If an individual did not repress their impulses, it could manifest in either perversion or artistic expression. Freud applied the same methodology he used for dream analysis to his critiques of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Dostoevsky. Freud believed that as all art and literature was the product of unsatisfied impulses, if these impulses could be dealt with there would be no need for the creative arts. Freud's view of art and phantasy as escapist has been debunked by modern ethologists, who see them as having adaptive uses.

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