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Paco Mitchell at Depth Insights lists the following reference for “the unconscious can only wish”: For an informed critique of Freud’s comment and of psychoanalytic theory in general, see C. G. Jung, The Theory of Psychoanalysis (New York: Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 1915). Full text is available at Archive.org. You may also want to search ...


The "quote" seems not to be verbatim, at least not from Freud. Ferenczi (1910, p. 21) describes Freud's views of the unconscious with the words: "Das Unbewußte kann nichts als wünschen", sagt Freud. ["The unconscious can only wish," says Freud.] Others, like Kaplan (1917), von Geijerstam (1920), or Jung (see Nick's answer), have used similar phrases to ...

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