Freud for the Twenty-First Century

The Science of Everyday Life

  • Robert Samuels

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-v
  2. Robert Samuels
    Pages 5-16
  3. Robert Samuels
    Pages 17-25
  4. Robert Samuels
    Pages 27-42
  5. Robert Samuels
    Pages 43-51
  6. Robert Samuels
    Pages 69-78
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 79-82

About this book


“With this nimble volume, Samuels emerges as a peerless Freudian life coach. Without ever abandoning Freud’s own belief in the value of science, and engaging with key contemporary advocates of the enlightenment doctrine, he articulates the so desperately needed, poetic wisdom for our times. This is a book to be read and re-read, ad infinitum.”
—Dany Nobus, Professor of Psychology at Brunel University, and Chair of the Freud Museum London, UK

This book places Freud’s theory of the reality principle in relation to both everyday experience and global issues of the 21st century and illustrates how it may be practically applied. Arguing against more critical recent accounts of Freud’s science, the author seeks to show how one might apply the scientific method to everyday life. It demonstrates how Freud contributes to a better understanding of reason and how this in turn can be used to unravel the role of unreason in both politics and personal relationships. 

Including critical examinations of topics such as Narcissism, Victimhood and Empathy, this engaging reappraisal of Freud’s relevance to contemporary life offers fresh insights for psychology, psychoanalysis and cultural theory; as well as practical guidance for a general reader.

Robert Samuels is Lecturer in advanced writing at the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA. He holds doctorates in Psychoanalysis and English. He is the author of 11 books, including Psychoanalyzing the Politics of the New Brain Sciences (2017).


Freud reality principle pleasure principle free association the Enlightenment Pinker Virtual Reality Transference Psychoanalysis Yuval Harari Academic Culture psychology of every day life modern Freud Evolutionary psychology Lacan Freud and the media Zizek Death Drive Narcissism

Authors and affiliations

  • Robert Samuels
    • 1
  1. 1.University of California, Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

Bibliographic information