Dora – Hysteria – Gender


Friday, 12 February 2016, 2:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Sigmund Freud Museum, Berggasse 19, 1090 Wien

Admission free, please register:

Download programme with abstracts (PDF)


Lectures (Language as indicated)

2:00: Daniela Finzi (DE): Narrative Strategien und hermeneutisches Begehren. Rekonstruktionen einer Krankengeschichte aus literaturwissenschaftlicher Perspektive

3:00: Rachel Blass (EN): The analytic denial of Freud’s struggle with the understanding of Dora: Simplifying the Oedipus complex and the process of its adoption

4:00: Beatriz Santos (EN): Is Dora a woman? Thinking identity and identifications through the feminist critique of a case of hysteria


5:00: Panel Discussion Hysteria and Perversion (EN)

Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein, Philippe van Haute und Esther Hutfless


7:00 Lecture (DE)

Ilka Quindeau: „Von Dora zu Conchita - neuere Konzepte zu Geschlecht und Sexualität in der Psychoanalyse“


Dora – Hysteria – Gender

Freud’s 1905 Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria is not only the first of the five major case studies he wrote, the so-called Dora case is also the only major case study dealing with a female patient. This first major case study is one of the most commented of Freud’s texts – a study that not only met clinical interest. For, in the 1970 and 1980s we can witness the start of a “Dora renaissance” that produced many new readings of the text from literary, philosophical and especially also feminist perspective. In these readings often special attention was paid to ideological aspects of the case study in particular and psychoanalysis in general, notably also regarding the power relations operating in language and sexuality. Indeed, we find such relations inherent to the field of psychoanalysis, sexuality, pathology and feminism in a condensed way in the Dora text. A thorough analysis of the text thus requires an interdisciplinary approach.

Such approach is central in the symposium “Dora – Hysteria – Gender”. The aim of the symposium is not only to situate the text originally named “Dream in Hysteria” in relation to The Interpretation of Dreams and the Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality while focusing on Freud’s understanding of sexuality, bisexuality, hysteria, perversion and transference from a historical and systematic perspective. The aim is also to elaborate the text’s potential and to develop new readings in view of the contemporary scientific fields of gender and queer studies. Part of this undertaking is the critical analysis of Freud’s theory of femininity.

With: Rachel Blass, Jens De Vleminck, Daniela Finzi, Esther Hutfless, Ilka Quindeau, Beatriz Santos, Philippe van Haute, Herman Westerink und Jeanne Wolff-Bernstein.

A Conference by the Sigmund Freud Museum in cooperation with the Freud Research Group


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Open every day (Monday – Sunday)
10.00 a.m. – 6.00 p.m.