Psychology and Politics

Intersections of Science and Ideology in the History of Psy-Sciences
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Psy-sciences (psychology, psychiatry, psychoanalysis, pedagogy, criminology, special education, etc.) have been connected to politics in different ways since the early twentieth century. Here, in twenty-two essays, scholars address a variety of these intersections from a historical perspective.

The chapters include such diverse topics as the cultural history of psychoanalysis, the complicated relationship between psychoanalysis and the occult, and the struggles for dominance between the various schools of psychology. They show the ambivalent positions of the “psy” sciences in authoritarian regimes, revealing the role of psychology in legitimating and normalizing them on the one hand, and being exposed to the repression of dictatorships on the other.

The authors also discuss the ideological and political aspects of mental health and illness in Hungary, Germany, post–World War I Transylvania, and Russia. Other chapters describe the attempt by critical psychology to understand the production of academic, therapeutic, and everyday psychological knowledge in the context of the power relations of modern capitalist societies.

Introduction (by the editors)
I. Cultural Representations of Psychoanalysis in Personal and Social history
MICHAEL MOLNAR: "A Museum of Human Excrement"
JÚLIA GYIMESI: Anomalies of Demarcation in the Light of the Nineteenth-century Occult Revival
MELINDA FRIEDRICH: Psychoanalysis in Representative Organs of the Hungarian Press between 1913 and 1939
ANNA BORGOS: Alice Bálint at the Intersection of the Personal, Professional, and Political
II. Ferenczi and Róheim Revisited
FERENC ERőS: Violence, Trauma, and Hypocrisy
RALUCA SOREANU: Sándor Ferenczi's Epistemologies and Their Politics: On Utraquism and the Analogical Method
SHAUL BAR-HAIM: "Tell Them that We are not Like Wild Kangaroos": Géza Róheim and the (Fully) Human Primitive
GYÖRGY PÉTER HÁRS: Géza Róheim—Alienness as a Source of Political Attitude
III. Psychoanalysis and Psy-knowledge in Soft and Hard Dictatorships
STEPHEN FROSH: Psychoanalysis in Troubled Times: Conformism or Resistance?
JÚLIA BOROSSA: Psychoanalysis and Taking Sides: Two Moments in the History of the Psychoanalytic Movement
GORDANA JOVANOVIĆ: How Ideology Shaped Psychology in Times of Wars and after Wars
MELINDA KOVAI: The Social Roles and Positions of the Hungarian Psychologist-Intelligentsia between 1945 and the 1970s. A Case Study of Hungarian Child-Psychology
DÓRA MÁRIÁSI: Remembering the Reinstatement of Hungarian Psychology in the Kádár Era. Reconstructing Psychology through Interviews
IV. The Politics of Psychiatry—Bodies, Illnesses, and Mental Health
EMESE LAFFERTON: The Hygiene of Everyday Life and the Politics of Turn-of-the-century Psychiatric Expertise in Hungary
ZSUZSANNA AGORA AND VIRÁG RAB: Who is Mentally Ill? Psychiatry and the Individual in Interwar Germany
RUSLAN MITROFANOV: Russian Psychiatry beyond Foucault: Violence, Humanism and Psychiatric Power in the Russian Empire at the End of the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries
ZSUZSA BOKOR: Patients and Observers. Specific Data Collection Methods in an Interwar Transylvanian Hospital
BALÁZS BERKOVITS: Contemporary Defenses of Psychiatry's Moral-Medical Types in Light of Foucault's Lectures on the Abnormal
V. Critical psychology and the epistemology of psy-knowledge
PHILIP THOMAS: Neoliberal Governmentality, Austerity, and Psycho-Politics
MÁRTA CSABAI, ORSOLYA PAPP-ZIPERNOVSZKY: Psycho-Politics and Illness Constructions in the Background of the DSM-5's Trauma-Concept
ALEKSANDAR DIMITRIJEVIĆ: Is Integration Possible for Psychoanalysis?
DENNIS FOX: Parallels, Intersections, and Clashes: Journeys on the Fringe
About the Authors

"The volume has much to offer for data‐minded, bottom‐up historians of psychology. It also, however, has some peculiar theoretical features, notably the choice of topics and the attitude of the left‐wing liberal authors. The crucial questions of interest to the authors are what is psychology and what is politics. They entertain the conception of Psy‐sciences as introduced by the British medical historian Nikolas Rose. They study the history of a peculiar fuzzy set of topics that fall within psychology, psychiatry, psychoanalysis, education, special education, and criminology. As they claim in the Preface to the book, regarding politics, they look for direct political pressures and indirect influences between social processes and scientific trends and practices."
"While the psy-sciences (psychology, psychiatry, psychoanalysis, pedagogy, criminology, special education, etc.) have been studied from historical and political angles before, this volume stands out in its distinct focus on the specifics of the process in Central and Eastern Europe. On the one hand, this part of the world represents the intellectual cradle of psychoanalysis. On the other, much less is known about the biographies and conceptual developments associated with specific individuals, in particular as their thought and activities confronted changing regimes and ideologies. An especially productive aspect of Psychology and Politics is its engagement with primary historical sources around the development of early psychoanalysis and psychology. The most compelling essays in this collection manage to successfully attend to the tension between individual fates and ideas, and larger historical forces. It is interesting to see how now, in times of increasing populism and... more