From the group of pioneers, Ernest Jones is probably the least close to Freud, geographically as well as personally.
Paradoxically, we have to admit he was one of the most faithful and reliable of his disciples. It was he who accommodated Freud in his old days when the latter had to leave Austria because of the rise of
Nazism. It was he as well who, after the death of his former colleagues, devoted himself to the effective charge of the analytical movement.
Born in Wales, Great Britain, Ernest Jones (1879-1958)
studied medicine and had taken an interest in neurology before remarking Freud's work about 1903. He soon became enthusiastic about this new discipline and sought means for
applying it to his practice. In 1908, he attended the first congress on psychoanalysis in Salzburg, met Freud and presented his first article. At the end of 1908, Jones embarked
for Canada, settled in Toronto, where, during the next four years, he worked for the spreading of Freudian ideas in Canada and the United States, where he tried to set up an
organisation. Jones left America following an obscure matter of morals involving one of his patients.
He went to Vienna where he undertook a short analysis with Freud, who thereafter directed him to Ferenczi. Jones
afterwards settled in London, where he dedicated the remainder of his life to the care of Freud's work. In addition to his concern with the British Society of Psychoanalysis, he also led the
International Association and was involved in the International Journal of Psycho-Analysis.
In addition to his personal work, we also owe him one of the
best of Freud's biographies. In spite of the heart attack he suffered in 1944, Jones continued his work as a biographer, while also organising the translation of Freudian works into English.
Copyright René DesGroseillers