Frederick Crews

Biography of Frederick Crews

Frederick Campbell Crews (born 1933, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an award-winning American essayist, literary critic, author, and Professor Emeritus of English at the University of California, Berkeley. He received popular attention for The Pooh Perplex, a book of satirical essays parodying contemporary casebooks. Initially a proponent of psychoanalytic literary criticism, Crews later moved away from, and in the early 1980s rejected psychoanalysis, going on to criticize Freud's scientific and ethical standards. Crews became a prominent critic of Freud during the "Freud wars" of the 1980s and 90s, which debated the Viennese psychoanalyst's reputation, scholarship and impact on the 20th century.

Crews has also published a variety of skeptical and rationalist essays, including book reviews and commentary for The New York Review of Books, on a variety of topics including Freud's work and recovered memory therapy, both of which were published as separate collections. Crews has also published several successful handbooks on the English language.

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