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Key publications about Sabina Spielrein

For abbreviations, see end of list.


Books (chronological order)

Cooper-White, P. & Kelcourse, F. (eds.) (2019), Sabina Spielrein and the Beginnings of Psychoanalysis: Image, Thought, and Language (Routledge). [essays about Spielrein and a selection of her works] 


Plastow, M. G. (2018), Sabina Spielrein and the Poetry of Psychoanalysis

Writing and the End of Analysis (Routledge). [In French: Sabina Spielrein: Sabina Spielrein, poésie et vérité: L'écriture et la fin de l'analyse, Érès, 2021]


Cape, R. & Burt, R. (eds.) (2018), The Essential Writings of Sabina Spielrein. Pioneer of Psychoanalysis (Routledge). [a selection of Spielrein's works]


Covington, C. & Wharton, B. (eds) (2015), Sabina Spielrein, Forgotten Pioneer of Psychoanalysis, revised edition (Hove, Brunner-Routledge). [collection of essays on Spielrein, with hospital records and correspondence]

Launer, J. (2014), Sex Versus Survival: the life and ideas of Sabina Spielrein (London and New York, Duckworth/Overlook). [biography]

Udler Cromberg, R. (ed.) (2014), Sabina Spielrein. Una pioneira da psicanálise. Obras completas [Sabina Spielrein, a pioneer of Psychoanalysis. Complete Works] vol. 1.

Simón Macías, T. (2014), Juego limpio. Sabina Spielrein entre Jung y Freud y los tiempos actuales [Clean Play. Sabina Spielrein between Jung and Freud] (Madrid, Psimática). [biography]

Hensch, T. (ed.) (2006), Sabina Spielrein: Nimm meine Seele: Tagebücher und Schriften [Sabina Spielrein: Take my soul: diaries and writings] (Freiburg, Freitag). [Selections from Spielrein’s diaries and correspondence]

Richebächer, S. (2005), Eine fast grausame Liebe zur Wissenschaft [An almost cruel love for science] (Munich, Dörlemann). [biography]

Covington, C. & Wharton, B. (eds.) (2003), Sabina Spielrein, Forgotten Pioneer of Psychoanalysis, 1st edition (Hove, Brunner-Routledge) 

Kerr, J. (1993), A Most Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud and Sabina Spielrein (New York NY, Alfred. A. Knopf) [First full length account of Spielrein’s relationship with Jung and Freud].

Wackenhut, C. V. & Willke, A. (1994), Sabina Spielrein. Missbrauchsüberlebende und Psychoanalytikerin [Sabina Spielrein. Abuse survivor and psychoanalyst] (Hannover). [unpublished dissertation]

Brinkmann, E. & Bose, G. (1986), Sabina Spielrein: Ausgabe in 2 Bänden,  Bd. 2 Ausgewählte Schriften [Sabina Spielrein: 2 volumes, Vol. 2 Selected Writings] (Frankfurt am Main, Brinkmann & Bose).

Carotenuto, A. (ed.) (1986), Tagebuch einer heimlichen Symmetrie: Sabina Spielrein zwischen Jung und Freud (Freiburg, Kore).

Carotenuto, A. (ed.) (1982), A Secret Symmetry: Sabina Spielrein between Jung and Freud (New York NY, Random House).


Carotenuto, A. (ed.) (1980), Diario di una segreta simmetria: Sabina Spielrein tra Jung e Freud (Rome, Astrolabio).

Chapters in books and journal articles 

Appignanesi, L. & Forrester, J. (1992), Freud’s Women (London, Weidenfeld). 

Bair, D. (2004), "Comments on the Film 'My Name was Sabina Spielrein'", JAP, vol. 49, pp. 443–445. 

Balbuena, F. (2020), "Sabina Spielrein: From Being a Psychiatric Patient to Becoming an Analyst Herself", The American Journal of Psychoanalysis, Vol. 80, Issue 3, pp. 281-308.

Balsam, R.  (2003), "Women of the Wednesday Society: The Presentations of Drs. Hilferding, Spielrein, and Hug-Hellmuth", American Imago, vol. 60, pp. 303–342. 

Bettelheim, B. (1983), "Scandal in the Family", New York Review of Books, 30 June, pp. 39–43. [Review of AC 1982]

Britton, R. (2003), Sex, Death and the Superego: Experiences in Psychoanalysis (London, Karnac). 

Caropreso, F. (2019), "Sabina Spielrein's theoretical views in her letter to Carl Gustav Jung (1917-1918)", Psicologia USP, vol. 30,

Caropreso, F. (2020), "Sabina Spielrein’s theory of the origin and development of language", The International Journal of Psychoanalysis, vol. 101, issue 4, pp. 706-723.

Caropreso, F. (2021), "Subliminal thought according to Sabina Spielrein's psychoanalytic theory", Psicologia Clinica, vol. 33, issue 1, pp. 141-159,

Caropreso, F. (2017), "The death instinct and the mental dimension beyond the pleasure principle in the works of Spielrein and Freud", The International Journal of Psychoanalysis, vol.  98, issue 6, pp. 1741-1762. 

Caropreso, F. & R. Theisen Simanke (2022),  "Barbara Low and Sabina Spielrein: Misrepresentations of their Works in the History of Psychoanalysis", American Imago, Vol. 78, No. 4.

Cifali, M. (2001), "Sabina Spielrein, A Woman Psychoanalyst: Another Picture", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 129–138.

Cooper-White, P. (2015), "A Comparative Timeline: Spielrein, Freud, and Jung", Pastoral Psychology, vol. 64, pp. 235–240.

Cooper-White, P. (2019), "From Zurich to Vienna: 'The power that beautifies and destroys'", in: Cooper-White, P. & Kelcourse, F. (eds.) (2019). Sabina Spielrein and the Beginnings of Psychoanalysis: Image, Thought, and Language (Routledge), pp. 73–109.

Cooper-White, P. (2015), "Introduction to Special Symposium: Beyond 'A Dangerous Method': Reclaiming Sabina Spielrein's Voice in the Field of Psychology and Religion", Pastoral Psychology, vol. 64, pp. 231–233.   

Cooper-White, P. (2017), Old and Dirty Gods. Religion, Antisemitism, and the Origins of Psychoanalysis (New York, Routledge).

Cooper-White, P. (2015), "'The Power that Beautifies and Destroys': Sabina Spielrein and 'Destruction as a Cause of Coming into Being'", Pastoral Psychology, vol. 64, pp. 259–278. 

Covington, C. (2001), "Comments on the Burghölzli Records of Sabina Spielrein", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 105–116. [Also appears in CCBW 2003 and 2015]

Covington, C. (2004), "An Interview with Elisabeth Márton", JAP, vol. 49, pp. 435–441. 

Cremerius, J. (2003), "Foreword to Carotenuto’s 'Tagebuch einer heimlichen Symmetrie'", pp. 63–80 in: CCBW 2003. [Foreword to German edition of AC]

Delafosse, O.J.M. (2010), Sur la langue de l’enfant: Choix de textes de 1876–1962 (Paris, L’Harmattan).

Etkind, A. (1997), Eros of the Impossible: The History of Psychoanalysis in Russia (Boulder CO, Westview Press). 

Gordon, Avery F. (2008), chapter 2, "Distractions", pp. 3162 in Ghostly Matters: Haunting and the Sociological Imagination (Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press), 2nd Edition. [1st Edition, 1997].

Graf-Nold, A. (2001), "The Zürich School of Psychiatry in Theory and Practice: Sabina Spielrein’s Treatment at the Burghölzli Clinic in Zürich", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 73–104. [Also appears in CCBW 2003 and 2015]


Harris, A. (2015), "‘Language is there to bewilder itself and others’: Theoretical and clinical contributions of Sabina Spielrein", JAPA, vol. 63, pp. 727–767; in: Cooper-White, P. & Kelcourse, F. (eds.) (2019). Sabina Spielrein and the Beginnings of Psychoanalysis: Image, Thought, and Language (Routledge), pp. 151–194.

Harris, A. (2016), "The Ghost behind the Ghost", pp. 115–120, in: A. Harris, M. Kalb & S. Klebanoff (eds.), Ghosts in the Consulting Room: Echoes of Trauma in Psychoanalysis (NY, Routledge).


Kelcourse, F. (2015), "Sabina Spielrein from Rostov to Zürich: The Making of an Analyst", Pastoral Psychology, vol. 64, pp. 241–258; in: Cooper-White, P. & Kelcourse, F. (eds.) (2019). Sabina Spielrein and the Beginnings of Psychoanalysis: Image, Thought, and Language (Routledge), pp. 36–72.

Krawczyk, A. (2009), "Byłam człowiekim", Tygodnik Powszechny. 

Kress-Rosen, N. (2003), "Kindred Spirits", pp. 251–270 in CCBW 2003.


Launer, J. (2014), "Sex and Sexuality: An Evolutionary View", Psychoanalytic Inquiry, vol. 34, pp. 831–846. [Includes account of Spielrein’s theory of sex and death]

Launer, J. (2015), "Carl Jung’s relationship with Sabina Spielrein: a reassessment", International Journal of Jungian Studies, vol. 7, pp. 179–193.

Launer, J. (2021), “Sabina Spielrein: her life, erasure, rediscovery and recognition as a key psychoanalytic thinker,” European Judaism, issue Judaism and Psychotherapy, Spring 2022.


Ljunggren, M. (2001), "Sabina and Isaak Spielrein", pp. 79-95, in: F. Björling (ed.), On the Verge: Russian Thought between the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (Lund, Lund University).

Ljunggren, M. (2011), "Memories of a Land in Stagnation", Baltic Worlds, vol. 3, pp. 42–46.

Lothane, Z. (1996), "In defense of Sabina Spielrein", International Forum of Psychoanalysis, vol. 5, pp. 203–217.

Lothane, Z. (2012), 'Sabina Spielrein between Carl Gustav Jung and Sigmund Freud: the naked truth vs. salacious scandals', Off the Couch, an Ezine of Psychoanalysis and Culture, vol. 2,  pp. 8–15. 

Lothane, Z. (2016), "Sabina Spielrein's Siegfried and other myths: facts vs. fictions", International Forum of Psychoanalysis, vol. 25, pp. 40–49.

Lothane, Z. (1999), "Tender Love and Transference: Unpublished Letters of C.G. Jung and Sabina Spielrein", IJP, vol. 80, pp. 189–204. [Also appears in CCBW 2003 and 2015, and in German, Italian, Polish and Russian]

Lothane, Z. (2013), "The Real Story of Sabina Spielrein: Or Fantasies vs. Facts of a Life", Presentation at the annual meeting of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 19 January.

Lothane, Z. (2007), "The Snares of Seduction in Life and Therapy, Or What Do Young Girls (Spielrein) Seek in Their Aryan Heroes (Jung) and Vice Versa?", International Forum of Psychoanalysis, vol. 16, pp. 12–27, 81–94.

Mirzabekova, N. (2003), "Freud’s Forgotten Pupil: Woman who Could Have Surpassed the Teacher", Pravda, 7 March.


Minder, B. (2001a), "Sabina Spielrein. Jung’s Patient at the Burghölzli", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 43–66. [Also appears in CCBW 2003]

Minder, B. (2001b), "A Document. Jung to Freud 1905: a Report on Sabina Spielrein", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 67–72. [Also appears in CCBW 2003]


Moll, J. (tr.) (2001), "Unedited Extracts from a Diary (1906/7?)", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 155–171. [Also appears in CCBW 2015]

Naszkowska, K. (2015), "Kim naprawdę była Sabina Spielrein?", theatre programme for Warsaw Dramatic Theatre, pp. 5–15.

Naszkowska, K. (2019), "Passions, politics, and drives: Sabina Spielrein in Soviet Russia", in:  Cooper-White, P. & Kelcourse, F. (eds.) (2019). Sabina Spielrein and the Beginnings of Psychoanalysis: Image, Thought, and Language (Routledge), pp. 110–150.

Naszkowska, K. (2020), "Sabina Spielrein (1885–1942). W poszukiwaniu własnej drogi" ["Sabina Spielrein (1885–1942). In search for her own path"], in: E. Kobylińska–Dehe (ed.). Psychoanaliza w cieniu wojny i zagłady (Universitas).

Naszkowska, K. (2021), “Sabina Spielrein: to Love, to Die, to be Reborn,” American Imago, Vol. 78, No. 4.

Noth, I. (2015), "'Beyond Freud and Jung': Sabina Spielrein's contribution to child psychoanalysis and developmental psychology", Pastoral Psychology, vol. 64(2), pp. 279–286.

Ovcharenko, V. (1995), "Le destin de Sabina Spielrein," L’Evolution Psychiatrique, vol. 60 (1), pp. 115–122.

Ovcharenko, V. (1999), "Love, Psychoanalysis and Destruction", JAP, vol. 44, pp. 355–373.

Plastow, M. G. (2017), "The Watershed of the Symptom: from Rhine to Rhône with Piaget and Spielrein", in: C. Owens & S. Farrelly Quinn (eds.). Lacanian Psychoanalysis with Babies, Children, and Adolescents: Further Notes on the Child, pp. 123–137, Karnac. 

Plastow, M. G. (2021),  “You would like to climb, and the devil seizes you by the feet and drags you down,” The Papers of the Freudian School of Melbourne, Vol. 26.

Rapoport, E. (2021), "Sabina Spielrein’s death drive, queer experience and psychoanalytic twogetherness," Studies in Gender and Sexuality.

Rapoport, E. & A. R. Ben-Shahar (2017),  "Learning from Sabina Spielrein: charting a path for a relational drive theory," International Body Psychotherapy Journal,  vol. 16, no 3, fall 2017, pp. 47-62.


Richebächer, S. (2003), "'In league with the devil, and yet you fear fire?' Sabina Spielrein and C.G. Jung: A Suppressed Scandal from the Early Days of Psychoanalysis", pp. 227–250 in CCBW 2003.


Richebächer, S. (2016), "'I Long to Get Together with All of You…’: A Letter of Sabina Spielrein-Scheftel (Rostov-on-Don) to Max Eitingon, 24 August 1927", Psychoanalysis and History, vol. 18, pp. 119–133.

Santiago-Delafosse, M.J. & Delafosse, O.J.M. (2002), "Spielrein, Piaget and Vygotsky: Three Positions on Child Thought and Language", Theory and Psychology, vol. 12, pp. 723–747.

Tomčić, A. & J. Launer, "Sabina Spielrein: Pioneer of Medical Science" in Early Women Psychoanalysts: History, Biography, and Contemporary Relevance (Naszkowska, K., Ed.), Routledge, 2024. 

Van Waning, A. (1992), "The Works of Pioneering Psychoanalyst Sabina Spielrein", International Review of Psychoanalysis, vol. 19, pp. 399–413.


Vidal, F. (2001), "Sabina Spielrein, Jean Piaget – Going their Own Ways", JAP, vol. 46, pp. 139–153. [Also appears in CCBW 2003]

Literary interpretation

Naszkowska, K. (2014), The Living Mirror: the Representation of Doubling Identities in the British and Polish Women’s Literature (1846–1938) (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang).  

Naszkowska, K. (2012), "Fathers Love to Torture", Transcultural Studies. A Series of Interdisciplinary Research, vol. 8, pp. 73–85.


Films, stage plays

Hampton, C. (2002), The Talking Cure (London, Faber) [Stage play about Spielrein]

Márton, E. (2002), My Name was Sabina Spielrein (Denmark, Idé film) [Documentary film]

Further reading

Etkind, A. (1994), "How Psychoanalysis was Received in Russia", 1906–1936’, JAP, vol. 39, pp. 191–202.


Etkind, A. (1994), "Trotsky and Psychoanalysis", Parisian Review, vol. 61, pp. 303–308.


Etkind, A. (1996), "Psychological Culture", pp. 98–120 in D.N. Shalin (ed.), Russian Culture at the Crossroads. Paradoxes of Postcommunist Consciousness (Boulder CO, Westview Press).

McGuire, W. (ed.) (1974), The Freud/Jung Letters (Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press).

Miller, M. A. (1985), "Freudian Theory under Bolshevik Rule: The Theoretical Controversy during the 1920s", Slavic Review, vol. 44 (4), pp. 625–646.

Miller, M. A. (1990), "The Reception of Psychoanalysis and the Problem of the Unconscious in Russia", Social Research, vol. 57 (4), pp. 875–888.

Miller, M. A. (1998), Freud and the Bolsheviks: Psychoanalysis in Imperial Russia and the Soviet Union (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press).

Ovcharenko, V. (1999), "The history of Russian psychoanalysis and the problem of periodization", JAP, vol. 44, pp. 341–352.

Rice, J. (1982), "Russian Stereotypes in the Freud-Jung Correspondence", Slavic Review, vol. 41, pp. 19–34.


Rice, J. (1982), Freud’s Russia: National Identity in the Evolution of Psychoanalysis (New Jersey: Transaction Publishers).

Schepeler, E.M. (1993), "Jean Piaget’s Experiences on the Couch: Some Clues to a Mystery", IJP, vol. 74, pp. 255–273.

Van Der Veer, R. (1990), "The Reform of Soviet Psychology: A Historical Perspective", Studies in Soviet Thought, vol. 40 (1), pp. 205–221.

The Steering Group

AC = A. Carotenuto (ed.), Tagebuch einer heimlichen Symmetrie: Sabina Spielrein zwischen Jung und Freud (Freiburg, Kore, 1986)

CCBW = C. Covington & B. Wharton (eds), Sabina Spielrein, Forgotten Pioneer of Psychoanalysis (Hove, Brunner-Routledge, 2003) and Sabina Spielrein, Forgotten Pioneer of Psychoanalysis, revised edition (Hove, Brunner-Routledge, 2015)

IJP = International Journal of Psychoanalysis

JAP = Journal of Analytical Psychology

JAPA = Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association

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