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Zilboorg, Gregory


ZILBOORG, GREGORY (1890–1959), psychiatrist. Zilboorg was born in Kiev, Russia. He served as a physician in the Russian army, participated in the first revolution in Petrograd in 1917, and was secretary to the Ministry of Labor in the cabinets of Prince Lvov and Kerensky. He edited a daily paper in Kiev until the German occupation. Zilboorg was forced to leave Russia in 1919, when he settled in the U.S. He graduated from the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York City, in 1926, and was at the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute from 1929 to 1930. After 1931 he entered private practice in psychiatry and psychoanalysis. He was a member of the Committee for the Study of Suicide, assistant clinical professor of psychiatry in the New York Medical College, and on the Consulting Delegation on Criminology to the United Nations.

Zilboorg's research and writings extend over several particular fields. His two major works were The Medical Man and the Witch During the Renaissance (1935) and A History of Medical Psychology (in collaboration with George W. Henry; 1941). His historical work was followed by Mind, Medicine and Man (1943), Sigmund Freud (1951), The Psychology of the Criminal Act and Punishment (1954), and Freud and Religion (1958). Among Zilboorg's shorter works three deal with suicide: Suicide among Civilized and Primitive (1936), Differential Diagnostic Types of Suicide (1936), and Considerations on Suicide … (1937). His paper "On Social Responsibility" in Searchlights on Delinquency (ed. K.R. *Eissler, 1948) provides an insight into Zilboorg's view of the role of psychoanalysis vis-à-vis the problems of society.


A. Grinstein, Index of Psychoanalytic Writings, 4 (1958); 8 (1965), incl. bibl.

[Louis Miller]

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