Psychoanalysis, Nazism and 'Jewish science'

Int J Psychoanal. 2003 Oct;84(Pt 5):1315-32. doi: 10.1516/00207570360720489.


In this paper the author offers a partial examination of the troubled history of psychoanalysis in Germany during the Nazi period. Of particular interest is the impact on psychoanalysis of its 'Jewish origins'--something denigrated by the Nazis but reclaimed by more recent Jewish and other scholars. The author traces the rapid decline of the pre-Nazi psychoanalytic institutions under the sway of a policy of appeasement and collaboration, paying particular attention to the continuation of some forms of psychoanalytic practice within the 'Göring Institute'. He suggests that a feature of this history was the anti-Semitism evidenced by some non-Jewish psychoanalysts, which revealed an antagonism towards their own positioning as followers of the 'Jewish science'.

Publication types

  • Historical Article

MeSH terms

  • Germany
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Jews*
  • National Socialism / history*
  • Prejudice*
  • Psychoanalysis / history*
  • Public Policy