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Zeitschrift Für Psychoanalytische Pädagogik


Founded in 1926 by Heinrich Meng, a German psychoanalyst, and Ernst Schneider, a Swiss educationist, the Zeitschnift für Psychoanalytische Pädagogik (Review of Psychoanalytic Teaching ) was first published in Stuttgart, then in Vienna until 1937, with a view to disseminating psychoanalytic discoveries among educators and "inventing a new way of posing problems" (Balint, 1932).

Contributors to the Review, many of whom were women, were recruited from among psychoanalysts and teachers from Austria (August Aichhorn, Siegfried Bern-feld, Paul Federn, Anna Freud, Melanie Klein, Wilhelm Reich, and Richard and Edith Sterba), Germany (Erich Fromm, Frieda Fromm-Reichmann, Georg Groddeck, Karl Landauer, and Nelly Wolffheim), Switzerland (Hans Behn-Eschenburg, Oskar Pfister, Ernst Schneider, and Hans Zulliger), but also from Hungary (Alice Balint and Sándor Ferenczi), Britain (Dorothy Burlingham and Mary Chadwick), France (Marie Bonaparte and René Laforgue), as well as Sweden, Poland, and Russia (Sabina Spielrein). The Review contained two articles by Freud, who welcomed the initiative of the founders.

Although they initially nurtured the hope of being able to avoid the neuroses with the help of an appropriate education, the so-called psychoanalytic teachers progressively yielded to disenchantment, even pessimism. In 1936 Ruth Weiss presented a critical review of the questions remaining to be treated (Vol. 10). And in 1937, the Review (Vol. 11) published the papers presented at the Budapest symposium concerning the "revision" of psychoanalytic teaching: it analyzed the problems of the psychoanalytic educator (Dorothy Burlingham) and the shortcomings of a pedagogy that accorded insufficient importance to group phenomena (Hans Zulliger) and gave rise to misunderstandings (S. Bornstein-Windholz). And as a result of events at the time and the departure of many psychoanalysts into exile, the Review ceased to appear in 1937.

Although there was relatively little response from the teaching profession, the provocation to think differently about the field of education and the subversive potential of the Review were important in the history of the relationship between teaching and psychoanalysis. Each issue, first monthly then quarterly, devoted considerable space to a review of psychological, psychoanalytic, and literary publications and reviews as well as statements and reports on psychoanalytic training and congresses.

As a forum for exchanging experiences and theorizing about a new teaching practice that was at odds with a repressive education, the Review saw itself as the spokesperson for an education that was "enlightened" by psychoanalysis. Its feature articles were illustrated by case studies and focused on the manifestations of infantile sexuality, the role of the emotions in learning, intellectual inhibitions and academic failure, the importance of transference phenomena, and the unconscious of the adult educator. It pleaded for another type of teacher training and for a collaboration between psychoanalysts and teachers. It provided a critical analysis of the different educational institutions as well as of the ideals of the new education movement.

The study of the phenomena of group psychology, the contradictions of the educational system, the psychic and social limits to the capacity to be educated, as well as political determinism oriented the movement for a psychoanalytically informed education and a sociological critique of education.

Jeanne Moll

See also: Internationaler Psychoanalytischer Verlag; Meng, Heinrich; Schneider, Ernst.


Balint, Alice. (1953). The psycho-analysis of the nursery. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. (Original work published 1932)

Cifali, Mireille, and Moll, Jeanne. (1985). Pédagogie et Psychanalyse. Paris: Dunod.

Moll, Jeanne. (1989). La Pédagogie psychanalytique. Origine et histoire. Paris: Dunod.

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