Citing and referencing the works of Sigmund Freud

Freud booksQuoting from and referencing the work of Freud can be a little tricky because the works are available in various published editions and formats.

Those main guidelines are also valid for other authors whose papers have been re-published together later on.

If you need further advice on how to cite and reference all types of documents, have a look at this page.

1. Hogarth Press – Complete Psychological Works (print format)

The main complete edition of the work of Freud was published by Hogarth  Press in 24 volumes.

Example of a reference for one of the volumes:

Freud, S. (1955) The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud. London, Hogarth Press.

This set was also published in paperback in 2001 by Vintage Press.

1.1 Basic reference

When referencing a paper within one of these volumes, your reference should take for model the way your reference book chapters.

It should look like this:

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud.Vol.18. London: Hogarth Press, 1955, pp. 3-64.

Note that, in this example, 1920 is the year of the original publication of this paper, while 1955 is the year when the collection was published by Hogarth Press.

Also note that you have to add the page number for this chapter at the end of the reference.

1.2. Several dates

Sometimes, when a paper has been published many years after having been written, you can end up with two different dates.

Here is how you can include them in your reference:

Freud, S. (1905[1901]) ‘Fragment of an analysis of a case of hysteria’, in The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud. Vol. 7. London: Hogarth Press, 1953, pp. 3-122.

In this example, 1901 is the year when the greater part of this case history was written. 1905 is the year of its first publication. Finally, it was published by Hogarth Press in 1953.

1.3. Abbreviating further references

If you are manually referencing many works from Freud, you can use an abbreviation, so as to shorten the length of your bibliography.

To do this, you must give the full reference the first time and add an explanatory note that allows you not to write the reference in full for the next works you’re referencing.

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud.Vol.18. London: Hogarth Press, 1955, pp. 3-64.

(all following references to the complete works will be abbreviated to Standard Edition)

Subsequent volumes, because of the above explanatory note, can be referenced more succinctly by not writing in full the title of the volume but instead: “Standard Edition” + volume number.

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in Standard Edition Vol.18. London: Hogarth Press, 1955, pp. 3-64.

1.4. Basic in-text citation

When citing this work in-text, it should look like this:

In ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’ Freud noted that “…” (Freud, 1920, SE18, p. 45).

If you have two different dates as in the example of ‘Fragment of an analysis of a case of hysteria’ seen above, you also put both of them in the in-text citation.

In one of his case of hysteria (Freud, 1905[1901], SE7), Freud shows…

2. Pelican (Penguin) Freud Library (print format)

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s Freud’s works were also published in paperback in 15 volumes as the Pelican (and then the Penguin) Freud Library (abbreviated to PFL). This collection is slightly abridged and does not necessarily follow the sequence used by the Hogarth published set but is roughly in chronological in order.

When citing from this collection the format is:

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in Penguin Freud Library Vol. 11. On metapsychology: the theory of psychoanalysis. London, Penguin, 1984, pp. 275-338.

Again, note that 1920 is the year of the original publication of this paper, while 1984 is the year when the collection was published by Penguin.

As for Hogarth Press, you can add an explanatory note after the first full reference and abbreviate the next ones, which would then look like this:

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in Penguin Freud Library Vol. 11. London, Penguin, 1984, pp. 275-338.

And when citing this work in-text, it should look like this:

In ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’ (Freud, 1920, PFL11, p. 281), Freud noted…

3. PEP Archive (electronic format)

The third resource for Freud is the PEP (Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing) Archive – an online full-text resource based on the Hogarth Press edition of the Complete Psychological Works.

You can access it from the “database” page on the library’s website.

You will need your Shibboleth password to access it.

With most papers, the PEP Archive does not give page numbers and this requires a slightly different way of citing both within the text as well as the list of references.

You must also note the date you viewed the electronic archive.

Your reference will then look like this:

Freud, S. (1920) ‘Beyond the pleasure principle’, in The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud. Vol. 18. Viewed on PEP Archive [online] via EBSCOHost http://search.ebscohost.com/ (authenticated resource). No pagination is given within this resource. (Accessed 15 January 2012)

And when citing this work in-text, it should look like this:

Freud described his thinking thus: “The experience with Herr K.—his making love to her and the insult to her honour which was involved—seems to provide in Dora’s case the psychical trauma which Breuer and I declared long ago to be the indispensable prerequisite for the production of a hysterical disorder” (Freud, 1905[1901], SE7, PEPArchive).

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