Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Psychology of Chess

Dr. Karl Menninger, an aggressive Freudian therapist, once declared of his chessplay: "It seems to be necessary for some of us to have a hobby in which aggressiveness and destructiveness are given opportunity for expression, and since I long ago gave up hunting (because it is too destructive), I have found myself returning more and more to the most ancient of all games." Ernest Jones, a biographer of Sigmund Freud, agreed with such sentiment when he wrote in 1930: "Chess is ... a play substitute for the art of war."

Concerning chess, the famous H.G.Wells wrote: "There is a class of men—shadowy, unhappy, unreal-looking men—who gather in coffee houses, and play with a desire that dies not, and a fire that is not quenched. These gather in clubs and play tournaments...but there are others who have the vice who live in country places, in remote situations—curates, schoolmasters, tax collectors—who must need to find some artificial vent for their mental energy."

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