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December 2005 Update
From
The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust
& The Wilhelm Reich Museum

We thank you for your continual interest and support. For newcomers to our e-mail Update list, none of the names on this list--nor the names of any Museum visitors, conference attendees or bookstore customers--are shared with any other individuals or organizations. If at any time you wish to be removed from this list, please let us know. All previous Updates, dating from March 2004, available online.

You can access them through the Updates option at the top of this page or via the Quick Links along the left side of the page. These Updates provide the best contemporaneous accounts of the Trust's ongoing activities over the past six years.

Looking Ahead to 2007
2006 Summer Conference
Our Website Is a Year Old
Back in Print at Our Bookstore
A Gift of First Editions for the Reading Room
Thank You From Mary Higgins
Distortions About Reich 48 Years Later
A Poem From a Foster Family 

LOOKING AHEAD TO 2007

As we approach the end of 2005 and take stock of our activities and achievements throughout the past year, The Wilhelm Reich Museum and The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust are pleased to announce two significant upcoming events in 2007:

       WILHELM REICH IN THE 21ST CENTURY:
       2007 INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ORGONOMY
       Saddleback Mountain Lodge
       Rangeley, Maine July 2007

       Organized and Hosted by
       The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust
       & The Wilhelm Reich Museum

The other major event is one in which we are proud to be participating:

       REICH EXHIBIT IN VIENNA
       Jewish Museum Vienna
       October 2007 January 2008

       Organized by the Jewish Museum Vienna
            & The Freud Museum
       Funded by the Jewish Museum Vienna
       With the participation of the Wilhelm Reich Museum

Here are more details on both of these events:

       WILHELM REICH IN THE 21ST CENTURY:
       2007 INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ORGONOMY
       Saddleback Mountain Lodge Rangeley, Maine July 2007

As we celebrate the life and legacy of Wilhelm Reich M.D. on the 50th anniversary of his death...

And as we look ahead to the opening of the Archives of the Orgone Institute to researchers and
scholars on Monday, November 5, 2007...

The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust and The Wilhelm Reich Museum invite the global community of
those committed to Reich's legacy to join together for an exchange of knowledge, hope, and friendship.

We look forward to the participation of individuals and organizations throughout the world...and we ask you to join with us in a place that Reich first visited and fell in love with in 1940...the place he called home from 1949 until his death... the place that was essential to his orgone energy research for nearly seventeen years: the Rangeley Lakes Region of Maine.

Because we anticipate a conference involving several hundred people from around the globe--too large for Orgonon's Conference Building--we have chosen to host this event just a few miles from Orgonon at the beautiful new Saddleback Mountain Lodge. Which provides ample meeting space, dining facilities, accommodations, and easy access to The Wilhelm Reich Museum, the amenities of Rangeley, Maine, and all of the Rangeley Lakes.

We are now in the process of contacting individuals and organizations for their participation, and further developing the specifics of this International Conference on Orgonomy. And we'll be updating you further as our plans progress. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or suggestions at: wreich@rangeley.org.

       REICH EXHIBIT IN VIENNA
       Jewish Museum Vienna
       October 2007 January 2008

In June 2004, we received an e-mail from Birgit Johler, Assistant Curator of The Freud Museum in Vienna, informing us of their plans to develop an exhibit on Reich which would open in Vienna in late 2007, as a way of honoring Reich on the 50th anniversary of his death.

Ms. Johler, who is a specialist in Cultural Studies, also expressed interest in objects and artifacts from The Wilhelm Reich Museum, and solicited our input and participation in the development of the exhibit.

Sixteen months later, in October 2005, the necessary funding was finally secured when the Jewish Museum Vienna agreed to underwrite the exhibit and provide the venue, thereby becoming the official organizer of the event. (Interestingly, many years ago the Jewish Museum organized an exhibit about the "Freudians" and the 13th International Psychoanalytic Congress in Lucerne in 1934.)

In a recent correspondence with us, Ms. Johler wrote:

"There couldn't be a better time than the 50th anniversary of Reich's death to trace his stunning, versatile personality, his creative work, his influence on modern body consciousness, and to bring all of this to a broader public audience through a scientific and historic exhibition. The exhibit will illustrate how Reich's emigration from country to country was fueled by grave conflicts involving personal opponents, scientific dogmatism, and political systems, all of which impinged on Reich personally and as a scientist:

  • In Vienna, his conflicts with Freud and the Psychoanalytic Society

  • In Berlin, his conflict with the political systems

  • In Oslo, his conflicts with the scientific, medical and political systems, and the public (i.e. the press campaign against Reich)

  • In the United States, his conflict with the medical, political, and governmental administrative systems

"Reich's life and work will be represented with documents, photos, artwork, audio and video materials, and 3-D objects. In addition, an artistic display by Oz Almog--an Austrian-Israeli artist--as well as the installation of an orgone energy accumulator in a public place near the Museum, will provide further access to Wilhelm Reich and his work."

After the exhibit closes in January 2008, plans are that it will be shown in other venues throughout Europe, then hopefully brought to the United States. A catalogue is also being planned in which scientists from different disciplines will offer different views on Reich's life and work.

Ms. Johler will be visiting Orgonon in July 2006 to tour the museum, discuss the exhibit with us, and participate in our Summer Conference. We look forward to meeting her. 


SUMMER CONFERENCE
JULY 17 21, 2006

      THE LEGACY OF WILHELM REICH:
      NEW SCHOLARSHIP, PROJECTS, AND DIRECTIONS

We are putting together next summer's conference which, in keeping with our emphasis on moving forward, will focus on current research, scholarship and practical applications of Reich's work. Presenters will include:

Birgit Johler
Assistant Curator - Freud Museum, Vienna

Elizabeth Ann Danto, Ph.D.
Author of Freud's Free Clinics

Mary Boyd Higgins
Director Wilhelm Reich Museum

Conny Huthsteiner, M.D.
Psychiatrist and Orgone Therapist

Jorgos Kavouras, M.D.
Physician and author of Heilen Mit Orgonenergie
[Healing with Orgone Energy]

Ronald Maio, D.O.
Director University of Michigan Injury Research Center

Stephan Simonian, M.D.
Psychiatrist and Orgone Therapist

James Strick, Ph.D
Author of Sparks of Life: Darwinism and the Victorian Debates Over Spontaneous Generation, and co-author of The Living Universe: NASA and the Development of Astrobiology 


OUR WEBSITE IS A YEAR OLD

November 26, 2005 marked the one year anniversary of our new website. And on that day the visitor counter showed over 30,700 hits. The website averages about 84 hits each day. Although what that translates into--in terms how many different individuals are visiting and where specifically they're navigating to-- we're not sure.

Obviously what we are sure of is that there is a consistent level of daily activity resulting in increasing requests for our Monthly Updates; inquiries about Reich, the Museum and the Trust; much appreciated compliments about the Museum and the Trust; and steady online Bookstore business through our PayPal capabilities.

Thanks to our friend and webmaster Phil Eskew of Indiana University, the website has achieved a significant Internet presence in an online landscape regrettably filled with much disinformation and distortion about Reich.

Because our website serves as our arm out into the world, and can often be an individual's first "point of contact" with Reich's life and work, we are continually striving to provide accurate, concise, and reliable information. 


BACK IN PRINT AT OUR BOOKSTORE

Two books by Wilhelm Reich, which have been out of print for several years, are now available in paperback:

Passion of Youth: An Autobiography 1897-1922
In narrative and diary, Reich recalls his childhood and youth on a farm in the Bukovina, his experiences in World War I, and his life as a student at the medical school of the University of Vienna. His diaries record his encounters with Freud and the growth of his conviction that sexuality is the core about which all social life and the inner life of the individual revolves.

Genitality in the Theory and Therapy of Neurosis
Reich's revised edition of his first major word Die Funktion des Orgasmus (1927). This book presents his findings on the significance of genitality as a biological function apart from procreation. The book's title has been changed to avoid any confusion with the later work by Reich first published in English as The Function of the Orgasm.

And Contact With Space (in bound Xerox copy) is now available in large print. Several months ago, a customer who bought a regular copy suggested we also issue the book in large print, since there was so much unused "white space" in the margins anyway. We thought it was a great idea. And we hope you do, too. 


A GIFT OF FIRST EDITIONS FOR OUR READING ROOM

Longtime museum supporters Wilbur and Rachel Rippy of New York have recently donated a valuable collection of first editions by Wilhelm Reich. This collection includes a complete set of the Orgone Energy Bulletin and International Journal of Sex-Economy and Orgone Research.

Arrangements are being made so visitors to the Chester M. Raphael Reading Room (located in the Conference Building) will have access to these historic and valuable materials. Thank you, Wilbur and Rachel. 


THANK YOU FROM MARY HIGGINS

And once again Mary Higgins would like to thank everyone for all of their kindnesses on the occasion of her 80th birthday in October. To all of those who called or sent cards...to those who attended the Williams Club event in which we honored Mary for a lifetime of service to The Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust...and to those who could not attend but generously donated to the Wilhelm Reich Infant Trust Endowment Fund as their way expressing their gratitude...Mary extends her deepest thanks. 


DISTORTIONS ABOUT REICH 48 YEARS LATER

While we have much to be excited and optimistic about, we remain deeply concerned that 48 years after Reich's death, we continue to read and hear the same distortions, slanders, inaccuracies, and misunderstandings about Reich's life and work.

Starting in January 2005, with an article in New Yorker magazine, we saw the same destructive rumors, misstatements, and assertions about the orgone energy accumulator, Reich's sanity, Reich's orgasm research, and Reich's cancer research being repeated as fact throughout the year.

Any misstatements about Reich--whether they're in books, articles, essays, and, perhaps most disturbingly, on the Internet--take on an undeserved life of their own as credible source material for current and future generations. We wish that some of these people who feel compelled to write about Reich would forego the need for irony and sureness of opinion, and devote more attention to facts, no matter how difficult that task may be.

While no one would argue with anyone's fundamental right to debate, argue, and offer opinions about the merits of Reich's life and legacy, ensuring the correctness of basic facts requires a more objective, stringent criteria. To disseminate misstatements of easily verifiable facts about Reich is either intellectually lazy or intellectually dishonest, two qualities that historically have always undermined truth and genuine knowledge. 


A POEM FROM A FOSTER FAMILY

Finally, we call your attention to a source of both reflection and optimism: a Maine foster family who spent a week at one of our cabins here at Orgonon.

As you all know, Reich loved children and stipulated in his Will that the cabin on Dodge Pond where he lived--now called "Tamarack"--should be used as a summer home for children. For the past nineteen years throughout July and August, different foster families enjoy a week-long vacation at Tamarack, through a program that we run in cooperation with the Adoptive and Foster Families of Maine.

A journal is always present in the cabin for families to write in. And we've read some very moving stories, as well as some humorous entries. The following poem was found in a Tamarack journal, and is now reproduced on our Trail of Thoughts, one of the numerous woodland trails on our 175-acre property.

We think it says it all about the magic of Tamarack, and of Orgonon:

       Kids swim
       Fish bite
       Moose tracks
       Little mice
       Fireside chats
       Peace & Calm
       Playing Games
       Tranquility abounds

       Loons call
       Birds sing
       Osprey splash
       Wildflowers sway
       God's gifts
       And they all bring
       Mountains surround
       Dodge Pond shines
       Trees point Heavenward
       And all is fine


UNTIL NEXT MONTH

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Contact : 207.864.3443 | wreich@rangeley.org