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Sigmund Freud, William James and Other Famous Psychologists

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Throughout history, there have been many famous psychologists and one of the most well known, famous psychologists was Sigmund Freud (1856-1939). He was born on May 6, 1856 in what is now the Czech Republic and died in London, England at the age of eighty-three. He was an Austrian psychiatrist and neurologist that founded the Psychoanalytic School of Psychology. People often refer to Freud, well known for his theories of the Mechanism of Repression and The Unconscious Mind, as ‘The Father of Psychoanalysis’.

Another of the well-known famous psychologists was William James (1842-1910). William James was born on January 11, 1842 in New York City and was the son of a notoriously eccentric and independently wealthy Swedenborgian theologian named Henry James Sr. Psychologist-philosopher William suffered from nervous disorders right up until his death. Although James was a Harvard physiology teacher, it was psychology, a new field, in which he became interested. In the United States, his was the first psychological research lab ever set up. Although considered one of the foremost philosophers in America, James suffered physically from a depressive, nervous personality until he died on August 26, 1910.

Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961) and born in Switzerland. An influential thinker, Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and founder of Jungian psychology or analytical psychology. This famous psychologists broad and uniquely influential psychology approach stressed psyche understanding by researching the worlds of philosophy, world religion, mythology, art, and dreams. Jung’s concept of the collective unconscious, psychological archetype, and theory of synchronicity were Jung’s most renowned contributions. Jung sent ‘Studies in World Association’, his work to another of the famous psychologists, Sigmund Freud, which resulted in a telephone conversation lasting over thirteen hours. Sigmund Freud and Carl Gustav Jung’s intense collaboration and correspondence lasted over six years until Jung resigned from the International Psychoanalytic Association where he had been the chairperson.

A prominent psychoanalyst, Theodor Reik (1888-1969) was one of several famous psychologists that trained under Freud in Vienna, Austria. In 1912, at the University of Vienna, Reik received his PhD psychology degree. Freud supported Theodor and his family financially for the several years he spent studying with Freud during psychoanalytic training. Reik did not have an MD degree so he was rejected from the medical psychoanalyst’s dominant community in the United States. Later Reik founded the National Psychological Association for Psychoanalysis in New York City, which is still one of the best-known, largest psychoanalytic training institutes. Psychoanalysis practice by non-physicians resulted from Reik’s lawsuit, which helped legitimize and define the practice.