Contributions by four of the seven major theoretical innovators in modern psychology, Sigmund Freud, Max Wertheimer, Abraham Maslow, and Noam Chomsky, are explored against the backdrop of their Jewish heritage. The psychological wisdom in Jewish religious practices and culture is highlighted as well, from a psychodynamic perspective.
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Remarkably, of the seven major theoretical schools in modern psychology, four were founded by Jews. The number is disproportionate to the world Jewish population, as is the number of Jews in the helping and mental health professions. There exists a fundamental psychological astuteness in Judaism as a religion and a culture, and this volume explores the link between the two.
Sigmund Freud, Max Wertheimer, Abraham Maslow, and Noam Chomsky have in common the intellectual innovativeness to develop complex and groundbreaking theories in the understanding of the human psyche. In addition, they have in common a Jewish heritage that appears to have shaped them in a fundamental way despite being from different eras and different parts of the world.
Many aspects of the Jewish religion, practices and culture portray intrinsic psychological wisdom, especially in matters of everyday life such as life cycle events and celebrations. This volume explores the multiple layers of meaning in the Torah and the Talmud, as well as in such cultural phenomenon as Jewish humor, the Jewish family, Jewish stereotypes, and Jewish mysticism. Rituals in mourning, and other religious practices are described from a psychologist's perspective. Infamous characters of the Tanach and well-known stories from the Bible are explained from the insight gleaned from depth psychology.
Melanie Rich is a licensed Clinical Psychologist who has been in practice since 1982. Her Masters and Doctorate are from the California School of Professional Psychology - Berkeley. Her first book is a co-edited volume Jewish Feminism in Israel: Some Contemporary Perspectives.