Karen Horney, “Culture and Neurosis”

Category : Psychology, Women

In the psychoanalytic concept of neuroses a shift of emphasis has taken place: whereas originally interest was focused on the dramatic symptomatic picture, it is now being realized more and more that the real source of these psychic disorders lies in character disturbances, that the symptoms are a manifest result of conflicting character traits, and that without uncovering and straightening out the neurotic character structure we cannot cure a neurosis. When analyzing these character traits, in a great many cases one is struck by the observation that, in marked contrast to the divergency of the symptomatic pictures, character difficulties invariably center around the same basic conflicts.

Source: The American Sociological Review, Vol. 1, No. 2, April 1936

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Ann Snitow, “Refugees from Utopia: Remembering, Forgetting and the Making of the Feminist Memoir Project,”

Category : Psychology, Women

Rachel Blau DuPlessis and I, old friends from the Women’s Liberation Movement, discovered in the late eighties a shared indignation – and grief. The books about the sixties were beginning to come out. Histories mostly written by men who had been there, these books skirted the Women’s Liberation Movement with a finesse it was hard to quarrel with.

Source: Memory and the Future (NY: Palgrave McMillan, 2010), 141-157

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Max Wertheimer, “A Story of Three Days,” Documents of Gestalt Psychology

I shall report what happened in the course of three days to a good man who, facing the world situation, longed for a clarification of the fundamentals of freedom.

He saw: ideological devaluation of freedom had spread; freedom in the humane meaning of the word was proclaimed false, outworn, useless; and the radiance of the old idea was often exploited for other ends.

Source: Berkeley: University of California Press, 1961. Editor: Mary Henle; p. 52 – 64

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Max Wertheimer, “Gestalt Theory (With a Foreword by Kurt Riezler)”

Source: Social Research, 11:1/4  (1944) p.78

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“Forming Impressions of Personality”, Solomon E. Asch

Category : Psychology

Originally published in The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology  (1946, vol. 41, Issue 3, pp. 258-290).

We look at a person and immediately a certain impression of his character forms itself in us. A glance, a few spoken words are sufficient to tell us a story about a highly complex matter. We know that such impressions form with remarkable rapidity and with great ease. Subsequent observation may enrich or upset our first view, but we can no more prevent its rapid growth than we can avoid perceiving a given visual object or hearing a melody. We also know that this process, though often imperfect, is also at times extraordinarily sensitive.

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