Its contentious reputation was not due, in all likelihood, to the first of Freud's three essays, which concerned perversions.
Havelock Ellis had discussed sexual aberrations and Freud cited and praised his work; Richard von Krafft-Ebing and others had strived diligently to create a literature concerned with sexual deviations.
Rather, the controversy (and enthusiasm) that greeted Freud's brief volume was primarily due to the second essay, in which he discussed sexuality in infancy and childhood.
From a present-day perspective, it is difficult to imagine the vehement reactions provoked by suggesting the existence of infantile sexuality.
Indeed, sexuality in infancy and childhood is the central theme of the book.
Freud's discussion of adult sexual aberrations links them to unexpected or abnormal events during childhood.
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We are working hard to make it the best resource for scientific publications on the web. Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality was a 1905 work by Sigmund Freud which advanced his theory of sexuality, in particular its relation to childhood.In short, Freud argued that "perversion" was present even among the healthy, and that the path towards a mature and normal sexual attitude began not at puberty but at early childhood (see psychosexual development).Looking at children, Freud claimed to find a number of practices which looked innocuous but were really forms of sexual activity (thumb sucking was a primary example, the implications being fairly obvious).Freud also sought to link his theory of the unconscious put forward in The Interpretation of Dreams (1899) and his work on hysteria by means of positing sexuality as the driving force of both neuroses (through repression) and perversion.It also included the concepts of penis envy, castration anxiety, and the yet-unnamed Oedipal conflict. The immediate influence of the Three Essays was profound, and fostered change in the way that people thought, behaved, and learned about sexuality; this influence abides today.