Escape of Sigmund Freud

Escape of Sigmund Freud

  • Ebook
  • ISBN 9781468306774
  • 272 Pages
  • Overlook Books
  • Adult


A month after the Nazis took over Austria on March 12, 1938, every business owned by Jews had a Nazi appointed to run it. For eighty-two- year-old Sigmund Freud, the world’s leading psychoanalyst, the appointed "commissar" was a thirty-five-year-old chemist, Anton Sauerwald. Goebbels and Himmler wanted all psychoanalysts, especially Freud, humiliated and, later, killed, and Sauerwald was in a position to seal Freud’s fate.

The Escape of Sigmund Freud tells of the Nazi raid on Freud’s house produced evidence that would have prevented the Freuds from leaving Austria–yet Sauerwald chose to hide this from his superiors. With never-before-seen material, David Cohen reveals the last two years of Freud’s life and the fate of Sauerwald, from the arrest of Freud’s daughter, Anna, by the Gestapo; the dramatic saga behind the signing of Freud’s exit visa and his eventual escape to London via Paris; to how the Freud family would have the chance to save Sauerwald’s life as well.


"A tantalizing exploration of Freud’s escape from Vienna . . . [Cohen’s] writing is passionate, sometimes wry, and always gripping." — Independent

"The author illuminates the reasons for his facts carefully and clearly . . . An illuminating look at the end of the life of a giant of psychology." — Kirkus Reviews

"A very quirky, highly entertaining biography of Sigmund Freud..engrossing"

"Cohen’s scrupulous research will interest historians of interwar intellectual life and Freud’s later years. An appendix guides readers to who-is-who in the extended family, for Freud was obsessively loyal and devoted to a set of confusingly numerous relations."