Sep 1967 • Vol. XXIX No. 4 Book Reviews |

I’ll Play My Father

The Revolutionary Personality by E. Victor Wolfenstein. Princeton University Press, $7.50. The Revolutionary Personality is a distillate of modern orthodoxy. Essentially Freudian, it attempts yet once more to assert that, no matter what the cultural or historical circumstances, the Oedipus complex is the central human experience. It is psychoanalytic, and has the graces and failings of that practice: sensitivity to the mundane accompanied by the usual forms of biographical monism. In simply literary terms it goes back to the admirable work of Erik Erikson, whose Young Man Luther is an archetype of successful historical analysis. In spite of the excellence of its model, The Revolutionary Personality has more nearly the characteristics of another genre entirely, the autopsy of defunct greatness. Its three subjects, Lenin, Trotsky, and Gandhi, emerge as larger forms of ourselves and indeed as models of analytic probability. The besetting sins of a book like this are historical

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Myth or Criticism

By Ronald Berman

The Revolutionary Personality by E. Victor Wolfenstein. Princeton University Press, $7.50. The Revolutionary Personality is a distillate of modern orthodoxy. Essentially Freudian, it attempts yet once more to assert that, […]

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