Totem and Taboo: Resemblances Between the Mental Lives of Savages and Neurotics is a book by Sigmund Freud in four parts: “The Horror of Incest”, “Taboo and Emotional Ambivalence”, “Animism, Magic and the Omnipotence of Thoughts” and “The Return of Totemism in Childhood”. In these volumes, Freud applies psychoanalysis to the fields of archaeology, anthropology and the study of religion. Totem and Taboo has been seen as one of the classics of anthropology, considered by psychoanalysts and anthropologists as one of the great landmarks in the history of anthropology.
Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) was an Austrian neurologist and the father of psychoanalysis, a clinical method for treating psychopathology through dialogue between a patient and a psychoanalyst. In creating psychoanalysis, Freud developed therapeutic techniques such as the use of free association and discovered transference, establishing its central role in the analytic process. Freud's redefinition of sexuality to include its infantile forms led him to formulate the Oedipus complex as the central tenet of psychoanalytical theory. His analysis of dreams as wish-fulfillments provided him with models for the clinical analysis of symptom formation and the mechanisms of repression as well as for elaboration of his theory of the unconscious.