Karl Abraham

Karl Abraham (3rd May 1877 – 25th December 1925) was a Jewish psychoanalyst, and an early collaborator of Sigmund Freud, who called him his ‘best pupil’. He was born in Bremen, Germany to a Jewish family Nathan Abraham, a Jewish religion teacher (1842 – 1915) and his wife (and cousin) Ida (1847 – 1929). In 1907, he had his first contact with Sigmund Freud, with whom he developed a lifetime relationship. Abraham collaborated with Freud on his examination of manic depression illness, leading to Freud’s paper on ‘Mourning and Melancholia’ in 1917. He was the analyst of Melanie Klein during 1924–1925. Like Freud, Abraham sexualised children and suggested that if psychosexual development is fixated at some point, mental disorders will likely emerge. Contemporary with Sándor Ferenczi, Abraham studied child sexual trauma and, like Freud, proposed that sexual abuse was common among psychotic and neurotic patients. Furthermore, he argued (1907) that dementia praecox (group of schizophrenias) is associated with child sexual trauma, based on the relationship between hysteria and child sexual trauma demonstrated by Freud. The seeds of sexual Bolshevism lie here with the notion of persistently enforcing paraphilia’s on children.

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