Study Guide

Count Taaffe in The Interpretation of Dreams

By Sigmund Freud

Count Taaffe

In the Dream of Count Thun that appears in the book's fifth chapter (5.3.35), Freud isn't 100% sure that the Count he sees is really Count Thun. As he says, it may also have been Count Taaffe—another Austrian politician who "favoured some degree of independence for the non-German parts of the Empire" (source).

Count Taaffe takes a backseat in our discussions of Freud's dreams because Freud makes it clear that the real-life Count Thun helped to inspire the revolutionary dreams that he recounts. As he says in his preamble to the dream that appears in the book's fifth chapter, Freud saw Count Thun at a train station one afternoon and watched as the aristocrat flexed his social status and privilege (5.3.33). Unlike Count Thun, Count Taaffe doesn't represent much more than a fleeting association in the dream—or so Freud would have us believe.

For an intriguing interpretation of the more complex significance of Count Taaffe's appearance in the dream, check out this book.

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