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`In pursuit of the Nazi mind?' the deployment of psychoanalysis in the allied struggle against Germany

By Daniel Pick


This paper discusses how psychoanalytic ideas were brought to bear in the Allied struggle against the Third Reich and explores some of the claims that were made about this endeavour. It shows how a variety of studies of Fascist psychopathology, centred on the concept of superego, were mobilized in military intelligence, post-war planning and policy recommendations for ‘denazification’. Freud's ideas were sometimes championed by particular army doctors and government planners; at other times they were combined with, or displaced by, competing, psychiatric and psychological forms of treatment and diverse studies of the Fascist ‘personality’. This is illustrated through a discussion of the treatment and interpretation of the deputy leader of the Nazi Party, Rudolf Hess, after his arrival in Britain in 1941

Topics: hca
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Year: 2009
OAI identifier:

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