psychiatry

Richard von Krafft-Ebing and Deviant Sexual Behaviour

Richard von Krafft-Ebing and Deviant Sexual Behaviour

On August 14, 1840, Austro-German psychiatrist Richard von Krafft-Ebing was born. He was recognized as an authority on deviant sexual behavior and its medicolegal aspects. He was the author of the foundational work Psychopathia Sexualis, which contained in its last edition more than 200 case histories out of the hundreds of medical and court reports he had collected. Therein, he also coined the terms sadism and masochism. Youth and Education Krafft-Ebing was born…
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Philippe Pinel – the Father of modern Psychiatry

Philippe Pinel – the Father of modern Psychiatry

On April 20, 1745, French physician Philippe Pinel was born. He was instrumental in the development of a more humane psychological approach to the custody and care of psychiatric patients, referred to today as moral therapy. He also made notable contributions to the classification of mental disorders and has been described by some as “the father of modern psychiatry“. “I cannot here avoid giving my most decided sufferage in favour of the moral qualities…
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Harry Stack Sullivan and His Study of Interpersonal Relationships

Harry Stack Sullivan and His Study of Interpersonal Relationships

On February 21, 1892, American Neo-Freudian psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Harry Stack Sullivan was born. Sullivan developed a theory of psychiatry based on interpersonal relationships. He believed that anxiety and psychotic behavior could be traced back to families who did not know how to relate to their children, who consequently did not feel accepted and loved. Sullivan‘s work on interpersonal relationships became the foundation of interpersonal psychoanalysis. “If you do not feel equal…
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Alfred Adler and the Individual Psychology

Alfred Adler and the Individual Psychology

On February 7, 1870, Austrian psychiatrist and ophthalmologist Alfred W. Adler was born. He is best known for being the founder of the school of individual psychology. Alfred Adler considered human beings as an individual whole, therefore he called his psychology “Individual Psychology“. Moreover, Adler also was the first to emphasize the importance of the social element in the re-adjustment process of the individual and who carried psychiatry into the community. “The…
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Karl Jaspers and his Philosophy of Existentialism

Karl Jaspers and his Philosophy of Existentialism

On February 23, 1883, German-Swiss psychiatrist and philosopher Karl Jaspers was born. Jaspers had a strong influence on modern theology, psychiatry, and philosophy. He was often viewed as a major exponent of existentialism in Germany. “Man, if he is to remain man, must advance by way of consciousness. There is no road leading backward. … We can no longer veil reality from ourselves by renouncing self-consciousness without simultaneously excluding ourselves from the historical…
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Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and her Research in Death

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and her Research in Death

On July 8, 1926, Swiss-American psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross was born. Kübler-Ross was a pioneer in near-death studies and the author of the groundbreaking book On Death and Dying (1969), where she first discussed her theory of the five stages of grief. “I believe that we are solely responsible for our choices, and we have to accept the consequences of every deed, word, and thought throughout our lifetime.” – Elisabeth Kübler-Ross [1] Youth…
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Hans Berger and the Electroencephalogram

Hans Berger and the Electroencephalogram

On May 21, 1873, German psychiatrist Hans Berger was born. Berger is best known as the inventor of electroencephalography (EEG), coining the name, and the discoverer of the alpha wave rhythm known as “Berger’s wave”. Hans Berger – Early Years Hans Berger was born in Neuses (today Coburg), Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Germany, the son of Paul Friedrich Berger,  chief physician of the regional asylum in Coburg [3], and his wife Anna Rückert.…
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Melanie Klein and the Psychoanalysis of Children

Melanie Klein and the Psychoanalysis of Children

On March 30, 1882, Austrian–British psychoanalyst Melanie Reizes Klein was born. Klein is known for her work with young children, in which observations of free play provided insights into the child‘s unconscious fantasy life, enabling her to psychoanalyze children as young as two or three years of age. She was a leading innovator in object relations theory. “Feelings of love and gratitude arise directly and spontaneously in the baby in response to…
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Nathan Kline – A Pioneer of Psychopharmacological Drugs

Nathan Kline – A Pioneer of Psychopharmacological Drugs

On March 22, 1916, American psychologist Nathan Schellenberg Kline was born. Kline is best known for his work with psychopharmacologic drugs. He pioneered in the biochemical treatment of mentally ill patients by introducing the use of such drugs as the antidepressants lithium and iproniazid and the tranquilizer resperin. “Those of us who work in this field see a developing potential for a nearly total control of human emotional status, mental functioning, and will to act. These…
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R. D. Laing and the Anti-Psychiatry Movement

R. D. Laing and the Anti-Psychiatry Movement

On August 23, 1989, Scottish psychiatrist Ronald David Laing passed away. Laing is noted for his alternative approach to the treatment of schizophrenia. His first book, The Divided Self, was an attempt to explain schizophrenia by using existentialist philosophy to vividly portray the inner world of a schizophrenic, which Laing presented as an attempt to live in an unlivable situation. Laing’s views on the causes and treatment of serious mental dysfunction, greatly…
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