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"It was foreordained that Hegel, partisan of the concept, should find his maturest thinking take the form of an encyclopedia, the all-inclusive circular system whose prime significance lies precisely in circling around forever within itself, the system as system."

— Werner Marx, The Philosophy of F. W. J. Schelling, page x.
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Though I now have relatively little interest in creating new articles for Wikipedia, there was a time when I was very active in starting articles about books, usually serious works of non-fiction. I enjoy helping to improve Wikipedia's coverage of non-fiction books, motivated by the hope, which I have seen others express, that a better educated world would be a better world. Books about the origins of sexual orientation have been one of Wikipedia's weak areas. There were almost no articles about such books until I started creating them, and the few that did exist were almost all about books dating to the 1940s or 1950s, such as the Kinsey Reports or Clellan S. Ford and Frank A. Beach's Patterns of Sexual Behavior. Among the articles I started is that on Sexual Preference (1981). It is the article I have made the largest number of edits to (well over a thousand). It was promoted to good article status on August 12, 2016. Thanks to assistance from several helpful editors, I got the article on The Homosexual Matrix (1975) to good article status on February 17, 2017.

I started articles about the following books: A Brief History of BlasphemyA Critique of Pure ToleranceA General Theory of Exploitation and ClassA History of the MindA Separate CreationAdversus ValentinianosAn Essay on Marxian EconomicsAn Essay on the Nature and Immutability of TruthAn Inquiry into the GoodAn Introduction to Karl MarxAn Introduction to the Philosophy of ReligionAnalyzing MarxAnticlimaxAppearance and RealityArt and ScholasticismAspects of Scientific Explanation and other Essays in the Philosophy of ScienceBefore PastoralChristianity not MysteriousDiscourse, FigureErkenntnis und wissenschaftliches VerhaltenEssays in Self-criticismEssays on Truth and RealityEthical RelativityEthicsFor MarxFoucaultFoundations of the Science of KnowledgeFrege: Philosophy of LanguageFrege: Philosophy of MathematicsFreud: His Life and His MindFreud: The Mind of the MoralistFreud and PhilosophyFreud EvaluatedFreud, Biologist of the MindFrom Disgust to HumanityFrom Hegel to NietzscheFrom the Acting to the SeeingGay MarriageGay, Straight, and the Reason WhyGrowing Up Straight by George Alan Rekers • Growing Up Straight by Peter and Barbara Wyden • History, Labour, and FreedomHomosexual Behaviour: Therapy and AssessmentHomosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and WomenHomosexuality: An Annotated BibliographyHomosexuality: A Philosophical InquiryHomosexuality: A Psychoanalytic Study of Male HomosexualsHomosexuality: Disease or Way of Life?Homosexuality and the Western Christian TraditionHormones and Brain DifferentiationHuman SexualityIntentionInterpretation and Social CriticismIs Homosexuality a Menace?Karl Marx: His Life and EnvironmentKarl Marx: His Life and ThoughtKarl Marx: The Story of His LifeKarl Marx and the Close of His SystemKarl Marx's Theory of RevolutionLenin and Philosophy and Other EssaysLes Illusions de la PsychanalyseLesbian Poetry: An AnthologyLesbian/WomanLessons on the Analytic of the SublimeLiberalism and the Limits of JusticeLibidinal EconomyLogical InvestigationsLogikLove's BodyMain Currents of MarxismMaking Sense of MarxMale Homosexuality in Four SocietiesMarx after SraffaMarx and Modern EconomicsMarx in the Mid-Twentieth CenturyMarx's Concept of ManMarx's Theory of AlienationMarx's Theory of IdeologyMarxism: An Historical and Critical StudyMarxism and MoralityMarxism and the Oppression of WomenMeaning and NecessityMetaphysical DisputationsNatural Law and Natural RightsNietzsche: Philosopher, Psychologist, AntichristOedipus in the TrobriandsOn the Content and Object of PresentationsOne Hundred Years of HomosexualityOrganization of BehaviorPatriarchaPerceiving GodPhaedonPhilosophical Problems of Space and TimePhilosophy of Natural SciencePhilosophy of the UnconsciousPlay and Aggression: A Study of Rhesus MonkeysPregnancy, Birth and AbortionPrinciples of the Theory of ProbabilityPsychePsychology from an Empirical StandpointReason and MoralityReligion and NothingnessSex OffendersSexual DesireSexual PreferenceShaping Your Child's Sexual IdentityShelley: A Life StorySpinozaStudies in the Labour Theory of ValueStudies on Marx and HegelThat Nothing Is KnownThe AIDS WarThe Anita Bryant StoryThe Assault on TruthThe Cambridge Companion to MarxThe Concept of Nature in MarxThe Crisis of European Sciences and Transcendental PhenomenologyThe David Kopay StoryThe Degrees of KnowledgeThe Development of the Monist View of HistoryThe Dialectic of SexThe DifferendThe Emergence of ProbabilityThe Evolution of Human SexualityThe Formation of the Economic Thought of Karl MarxThe Foundations of PsychoanalysisThe Freudian FallacyThe Great MotherThe History of Human MarriageThe Homosexual MatrixThe Industrial VaginaThe Language of MusicThe Life and Work of Sigmund FreudThe Man of ReasonThe Man Who Wrote FrankensteinThe MarxistsThe Memory WarsThe Mismeasure of DesireThe Origin and Development of the Moral IdeasThe Origins and History of ConsciousnessThe Person and the Common GoodThe Philosophy of 'As if'The Principle of HopeThe Sceptical FeministThe Sexual BrainThe Social and Political Thought of Karl MarxThe Spinster and Her EnemiesThe Structure of IkiThe Structure of ScienceThe Taming of ChanceThe Theory of Capitalist DevelopmentThe Theory of Good and EvilThe Unconscious before FreudThe Young Hegelians and Karl MarxThings Hidden Since the Foundation of the WorldThought and ActionWestern MarxismWhat is Philosophy?Who Stole Feminism?Why Freud Was Wrong.

Articles that I rewrote include: Counterrevolution and RevoltCritique of Dialectical ReasonDecline and Fall of the Freudian EmpireFreud: A Life for Our TimeGrowing Up AbsurdHistory and Class ConsciousnessInner ExperienceIrrational ManKnowledge and Human InterestsLife Against DeathMarx and Human Nature: Refutation of a LegendNietzsche and PhilosophyPhilosophical ExplanationsReading CapitalReason and RevolutionSpinoza: Practical PhilosophyThe Discovery of the UnconsciousThe Myth of Mental IllnessThe Primal ScreamThe Trauma of BirthThinkers of the New LeftViolence and the Sacred.

Personal views[edit]

Of the books mentioned above, those I find most interesting or useful are A Critique of Pure Tolerance, Foucault, Freud: A Life for Our Time, Freud Evaluated, Homosexuality: A Psychoanalytic Study of Male Homosexuals, Irrational Man, Life Against Death, Love's Body, Main Currents of Marxism, Marx and Human Nature: Refutation of a Legend, Nietzsche and Philosophy, Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint, Reason and Revolution, Sexual Desire, Shelley: A Life Story, Spinoza, Spinoza: Practical Philosophy, The AIDS War, The Discovery of the Unconscious, The Evolution of Human Sexuality, The Foundations of Psychoanalysis, The Homosexual Matrix, The Man Who Wrote Frankenstein, The Mismeasure of Desire, The Philosophy of 'As if', The Primal Scream, The Trauma of Birth, Violence and the Sacred, Who Stole Feminism?, and Why Freud Was Wrong.

Since I have started many articles dealing with books about Freud or psychoanalysis, I will mention that I have benefited from reading two crucial relevant articles, "Repression" by Donald W. MacKinnon and William F. Dukes, and "Freud, Kepler, and the clinical evidence", by the philosopher of science Clark Glymour. Psychoanalysis is a subject about which much is written, and I make no attempt to read most of it, being reasonably confident that I am not missing anything special. I have read enough to realize that these two articles stand out amidst a vast literature and are of the highest level of importance. I would like to introduce them to those who may not be already familiar with them. The article by MacKinnon and Dukes was published in Psychology in the Making, a 1962 anthology edited by Leo Postman. Glymour's article was first published in 1974 in Freud: A Collection of Critical Essays, edited by Richard Wollheim, and in 1982 reprinted with a new afterword in Philosophical essays on Freud, edited by Wollheim and James Hopkins. I first read Glymour's article, which effectively disposes of some common fallacies involved in efforts to test psychoanalytic hypotheses, succinctly summarizing problems that had been noted as long ago as the 1930s. That article then drew me to the earlier article by MacKinnon and Dukes.

MacKinnon and Dukes relate the history of attempts to test psychoanalytic theories about repression in the United States, a history that, as they describe it, may strike some as a kind of comedy of errors, involving as it does one misunderstanding after another by the would-be testers of psychoanalytic theory. In their final implications, however, these misunderstandings, for reasons I intend to fully explain, seem to me far more tragic than comic. As MacKinnon and Dukes observe, by about 1930, American psychologists had begun to attempt to study repression in the experimental laboratory. Rather than immediately trying to develop new techniques designed to test psychoanalytic assertions, they "searched the psychological literature to see if by chance some experiments undertaken to test other theoretical assertions might not incidentally throw light on the validity" of repression and other psychoanalytic concepts.

One of those who did so was H. Meltzer, but according to MacKinnon and Dukes, Meltzer, due to being "not thoroughly versed in psychoanalytic writing", misinterpreted Freud's view that the purpose of repression is to avoid "unpleasure", taking the term to mean simply something unpleasant, whereas for Freud it actually meant deep-rooted anxiety. Nevertheless, Meltzer helped to call attention to various shortcomings in the studies he reviewed, such as their insufficient controls, their small number of subjects, and their lack of representative sampling of stimulus situations. Meltzer also "recognized that most of the investigations which he reviewed had not been designed specifically to test the Freudian theory of repression." The psychologist Saul Rosenzweig maintained in 1934 that the studies Meltzer reviewed were flawed in that they involved "sensory stimuli unrelated to the theory of repression". MacKinnon and Dukes write that those psychologists who wanted to study repression "faced the necessity of becoming clear about the details of the psychoanalytic formulation of repression if their researches were to be adequate tests of the theory" but discovered "that to grasp clearly even a single psychoanalytic concept was an almost insurmountable task."

Psychoanalysts judged attempts to experimentally test repression a failure, rejecting them on the "sweeping grounds that whatever else these researches might be they simply were not investigations of repression." When Rosenzweig sent Freud reports of his attempts to study repression, he discovered that Freud, though politely feigning interest, actually could not care less. Freud wrote back that he had examined Rosenzweig's "experimental studies for the verification of the psychoanalytic assertions", but that he could not "put much value on these confirmations because the wealth of reliable observations on which these assertions rest make them independent of experimental verification." While Freud himself considered studies like Rosenzweig's useless and unnecessary, but not actually harmful, most other psychoanalysts became convinced that the studies harmfully "misrepresented what psychoanalysts conceived repression to be." By presenting the views of psychoanalysts as being other than they are, they obfuscated matters.

Citing MacKinnon and Dukes, Glymour observes that psychoanalysts have argued that experimental attempts to test psychoanalytic ideas often involve testing hypotheses that are "no more than surrogates for the genuine article" and that "inferences from the falsity of such ersatz hypotheses to the falsity of psychoanalysis are not legitimate." Glymour took a small, but crucial and decisive, step beyond MacKinnon and Dukes by recognizing that the problems involved with testing psychoanalytic hypotheses about repression they had discussed also apply to testing psychoanalytic hypotheses in general, a fact with wide-ranging yet largely unrecognized repercussions. Despite the fact that it is, in principle, not in the least difficult to understand, the importance of this contribution by Glymour has unfortunately never been fully appreciated. It is so far from being appreciated that one can even point to a prominent case where mistaken claims that scholars would not be making had they read their Glymour form part of an entrenched orthodoxy.

My editing history[edit]

The userbox stating that I have made more than 108,000 edits reflects the number of edits I have made with all accounts and IPs. The breakdown is as follows: 73,535 edits as FreeKnowledgeCreator (as of May 16, 2017), 29,256 edits as Polisher of Cobwebs, 4,251 edits as ImprovingWiki, and an additional 1199 edits from various IP addresses. Combined account edits


Copyeditor Barnstar Hires.png The Copyeditor's Barnstar
Great job in taking The Homosexual Matrix to GA 7&6=thirteen () 13:58, 28 February 2017 (UTC)