The Leader pp 21-39 | Cite as

The Heroic Period in Psychohistory

  • Charles B. Strozier
  • Daniel Offer


Most fields have their time of great beginnings when “classics” are produced and bold ventures are made into the unknown areas of investigation that were perhaps once glimpsed but never fully explored. Freud, for example, always said that the poets had long intuitively understood his ideas, which he simply made available in scientific terms for the average mortal. Works that evolve from heroic periods appear glorious at the time and only later tarnish somewhat. Thus the first English novels of the eighteenth century interest professors of literature more than they do the average reader, and Max Weber requires patient determination on the part of the contemporary student of sociology. There are some nice exceptions to this general rule—Plato surely reads better than any modern philospher—but the rule still holds. Furthermore, classic periods characteristically generate obsession over method as the new search proceeds. There is no single treasure on a lost island, the existence of which can be keyed on a simple map; the islands in a sense themselves must be created in a whole new world of cartography.


Psychoanalytic Theory Father Figure Oedipal Complex Henry VIII Psychoanalytic Study 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Charles B. Strozier
  • Daniel Offer

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