Progress and Disillusion: Dialectics of Modern Society by Raymond Aron

By Raymond Aron

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6 0 ) . 38 Human Hope and the Death Instinct take the concepts of meeting a n d confirmation. T h e capacity for confirming a n d being confirmed between individuals, says Färber, 'depends, according to Buber, on what h e 5 calls "imagining the r e a l " ' - as we would say in literary criticism, 'realisation . ' This is exactly w h a t imaginative creativity a n d education are concerned with. 'Applied to intercourse between men, "imagining" the real means that I imagine to myself what another m a n is at this very moment wishing, feeling, perceiving, thinking, and not a detached context b u t in his very reality, t h a t is, as a living process in this m a n ' (Buber [101], p .

Art provides compensation - or at most therapy - rather than a means of apprehending features of the 'real' world . . art becomes a matter of relaxation rather than an incredibly difficult 'form' of apprehension leading to a profounder appreciation of the external world a n d to some enjoyment of it. (Bantock [ 3 ] , p . ) Below I pursue the development of post-Freudian thought, through its tortuous rejection of this attitude of Freud, towards a concern with creativity as something more primary.

In his case histories Freud was led to a 'rather comical kind of omniscience' : 'an omniscience akin to that assumed by the historian' : For the author tells us (of 'Dora') that he has been able to trace the 'whole origin and development* of this case 'with complete certainty and almost without a gap'. T h e comedy broadens as the m a n y gaps in this case history become so apparent, event to the historian, that he n o w has to justify his 'meagre information*. This he does on at least four grounds, three of which must surely be superfluous.

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