Posts Tagged Under: Psychoanalysis

Hermine Hug-Hellmuth Biography

Topic: Hermine Hug-Hellmuth Biography

Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth (1871-1924), actually her name was von Hug Hugenstein, was a pioneer in child psychoanalytic therapy. She was the daughter of a military in good standing. Hermine never married and died tragically murdered by her nephew Rolf. That nephew of 18 years was the natural son of his sister Antoine, who had been at her charge after the death of her sister.

Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth, following the footsteps of her sister, Antoine, became a children teacher. Later she entered the University of Vienna, graduating and obtaining a doctorate in Sciences Physics. In 1909 he defended his doctoral thesis about the physical and chemical properties of radioactive substances. Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth was one of the first Viennese women in college.

She became interested in the theories of Sigmund Freud and Psychoanalysis when  she started her own psychoanalysis with the analyst Isidor Sadger.

In 1910 Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth published in the Zentralblatt für Psychoanalyse her first article entitled “The Analysis of a Dream of a 5-Year Old Boy“. Later she published another interesting article entitled “The Nature of the Child’s Soul (Or Psyche” (1913), and in 1919 “A study of the mental life of the child“.

Hermine became a member of the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society in 1913, and was closely involved in its journal “Imago” and in the “International Zeitschrift für Psychoanalyse “.

In 1920 Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth participates at the Congress of Psychoanalysis in The Hague where she has a paper entitled “On the Technique of the Analysis of Children“.

Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth published the book “The Analysis of a Dream of a 5-Year Old Boy” in 1912, when Anna Freud was 18 and Melanie Klein began to be interested in the studies of Freud. That’s why she is considered the pioneer in the psychoanalytic treatment of children and the use of the game (play therapy) to understand the child’s mind. Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth was really the first to adapt psychoanalytic technique at the age of the child. She said: “The purpose of analysis, both adults and children, is the same: restoring mental health.”

At first it was thought that psychoanalysis could only be carried out after 17 or 18, but Hug-Hellmuth adapted psychoanalysis to the child’s age.

It was thought that Hermine von Hug-Hellmuth wrote a book called “A Young Girl’s Diary“, published anonymously in 1919. The book was a great success and several editions were sold in no time. The book is written in first person by a young woman named Rita who speaks, among other things, about “awakening sexuality”. People as influential as Lou Andreas-Salome or the writer Stefan Zweig spoke very highly of that book.

Hermine Hug-Hellmuth stayed true to psychoanalytic orthodoxy, and was among the favorite disciples of Freud.


(Edited by María Moya Guirao, M.D.)


Hermine Hug-Hellmuth



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Children Psychoanalysis (English)

Did you know that…..
The technique of psychoanalytic investigation was modified by Anna Freud who provided a method suitable for the analytic study of neurosis in childhood ?

Most of what is known about neurosis in children and other childhood mental disorders and their treatment had come from psychoanalysts therapists.
Melanie Klein develop also a method based on interpretation of the meaning of child’s play without recourse to verbal therapy. In that kind of psychoanalysis “toys” are very important.


(Edited by Dra. Moya Guirao)

Anna Freud

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Childhood and Psychoanalysis (English)

Did you know that…..

Attention to individual’s development during childhood and mental illness first come from psychoanalysis ?

Freud and Breuer, studying hysteria, established the relationship between neurotic symptoms and childhood experiences. Sigmund Freud discovered childhood symptoms in the past live of his adult patients.


(Editado por la Dra. Moya Guirao)


Sigmund Freud

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The Couch in the Psychoanalytic Therapy (English)

The “orthodox psychoanalysis” use the couch in order to facilitate the free association (the patients reclining upon the couch removes some of the distractions).

Furthermore, the lying on the couch with the analyst sitting behind the couch gives the analyst an opportunity to observe his patient without having to be conscious of his own reactions.


(Edited by Dra. Moya Guirao)


Freud’s Couch pictureFreud’s Couch

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Amentia (English)

Did you know that…..

The term Amentia has had various connotations during the history of Psychiatry ?

Theodor Meynert, Freud‘s professor in medical school in Vienna, used it to describe the paranoid states.

Later the Viennese school used the term Amentia for acute hallucinatory confusion. At the present time, this term is used in relation to primary mental deficiency, and as diagnosis for “delirium“.



(Edited by Dra. Moya Guirao)

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Ronald D. Laing (English)

Who is Ronald D. Laing ?

Ronald D. Laing (1927-1989) was a British psychiatrist and psychoanalyst. He worked in the famous Tavistock Clinic where he researched the extreme disturbances in human communication, especially in psychotics patients.

Laing was concerned with the developing approaches to mental illness. He said that schizophrenia is created by certain forms of human behavior in different kinds of family.

He is considered also the father of the Anti-psychiatric movement.

Ronald D. Laing was the author of numerous books :

– Self and Others

– The Divided Self

– Sanity, Madness and the Family

– The Politics if the Family

– The Politics of Experience

– Knots


(Edited by Dra. Moya Guirao)

"Retrato de Ronald D. Laing"

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Melanie Klein (English)

¿ Who is Melanie Klein ?

Melanie Klein was a psychoanalyst born in Vienna in 1882 and died in London in 1960.

She started her training with Sándor Ferenczi, and later, with Karl Abraham. She analysed children, at that time a new field.
She discovered the use of toys in child therapy with a very silent child patient.

Melanie Klein contributions to psychoanalysis theory are :

a)-early stages of Oedipus complex and super-ego formation,

b)-early operation of introjective and projective mechanisms in building up the child’s inner word of fantasy,

c)-the concepts of paranoid-schizoid and depressive positions,

d)-clarification of the difference between two sorts of identification : introjective and projective.

e)-the importance of a very early form of envy.


(Edited by Dra. Moya Guirao)

"Melanie Klein"

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Anxiety and Sigmund Freud

Sigmund Freud pioneered explorations into man’s inner life, discovered the role of unconscious phenomena (most particularly inner conflicts) in determining the sources of neurotic anxiety.

He recognized the crucial signi of anxiety for the development of the individual and the elaboration of his neurotic and psychotic states.



(Edited by María Moya Guirao, M.D.)


"Retrato de Sigmund Freud"

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