Views & Reviews

La Regenta

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 29 May 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:1253
  1. Carmen Pinto, consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist, South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, London
  1. Carmen.Pinto{at}

    Ana Ozores, “La Regenta,” is a character who has often been compared to Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina and Flaubert’s Emma Bovary. Like them she is a young woman who becomes involved in tempestuous relationships in an oppressive society where she struggles to find her place. Clarín, who was well informed about trends in psychiatry at the time, created a magnificent case study in his character. By coincidence, her first name and initial are almost the same as those chosen by Freud to write about Bertha Pappenheim (“Anna O”) 11 years later in his Studies on Hysteria (1895).

    Clarín masterly describes the contemporary notion of the “hysteric,” …

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