Biographical Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Philosophers

By Stuart Brown; Diané Collinson et al. | Go to book overview

Main publications:
(1970) L'Enfance de l'art, une interprétation de l'esthétique freudienne,Paris: Payot; new editions, PBP 1975, Galilée 1985 (English translation, The Childhood of Art: An Interpretation of Freud's Aesthetics, Winifred Woodhull, New York: Columbia University Press, 1988).
(1972) Nietzsche et la métaphore, Paris: Gaililée.
(1974) Quatre romans analytiques, Paris: Galilée (English translation, Freud and Fiction, trans. Sara Wykes, Cambridge: Polity Press, 1991).
(1979) Nietzsche et la scène philosophique, Paris: Galilée.
(1980) L'énigme de la femme, Paris: Galilée (English translation, The Enigma of Woman: Woman in Freud's Writings, trans. Catherine Porter, Cornell University Press, 1985).
(1982) Le Respect des femmes, Paris: Galilée.
(1983) Un métier impossible, Paris: Galilée.
(1984) Lectures de Derrida, Paris: Galilée.
(1989) Socrate(s), Paris: Galilée.
(1991) Seductions, de Sartre à Heraclite, Paris: Galilée.

Psychoanalytic approaches to creativity inform Kofman's readings of Freud,Nietzsche, Kant and other thinkers. Exploring parallels between writing and dreams in a series of close readings of Freud's texts, Kofman uncovers concealment and distortion; attending to structuring mechanisms or 'theoretical fictions' in the texts allows her to question the authority and status of a text. A similar approach is employed in her analyses of philosophers. From a feminist perspective Kofman examines the trope of 'woman as enigma', showing how this ('irreducible' and 'diabolical') image of woman which casts her as both fearful and fascinating is perpetuated within the discplines of psychoanalysis and philosophy.

Sources: IWWW; Duncan Large, obituary in The Guardian, 3 Nov 1994.

ALISON AINLEY


Köhler, Wolfgang

German-American, b: 1887, Tallin, Estonia, d: 1967, USA. Cat: Gestalt psychologist. Ints: Gestalt psychology; Philosophy and psychology of perception; animal psychology; physics and psychology; value theory. Educ: Universities of Tübingen and Bonn; studied physics (under Max Planck) and psychology (under Karl Stumpf) at University of Berlin; PhD on psychology of hearing. Infls: Max Planck, Karl Stumpf, Max Wertheimer and Edmund Husserl. Appts: Taught psychology and philosophy, University of Berlin; 1913-20, Director, Anthropoid Research Station, Prussian Academy of Sciences, Canary Islands; 1922, Director, Psychological Institute; Professor of Philosophy, University of Berlin; taught psychology at Swarthmore College and Dartmouth College, USA; 1959, Visiting Research Professor, Dartmouth College.


Main publications:
(1917) Intelligenzprüfungen an Anthropoiden, Berlin; second revised edition, Intelligenzprüfungen an Menschenaffen, Berlin, 1921 (English translation, The Mentality of Apes, trans. Ella Winter, London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co Ltd, 1925).
(1920) Die physikalischen Gestalten in Ruhe und im Stationaren Zustand, Brunswick; second edition, Erlangen: Philosophische Akademie, 1924.
(1929) Gestalt Psychology, New York and London: H. Liveright.
(1938) The Place of Value in a World of Fact, New York: H. Liveright.
(1940) Dynamics in Psychology, New York: H. Liveright.
(1941) 'On the nature of associations', Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society 84:489-502.
(1944) 'Figural after-effects: an investigation of visual processes', Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society 88:269-357.

Secondary literature:
Ayer, A.J. (1946) Language, Truth and Logic, second edition, New York: Dover, pp. 56-9.
-(1947) The Foundations of Empirical Knowledge, London: Macmillan & Co. Ltd, pp. 113-35.
Boring, E.G. (1930) 'The Gestalt pyschology and the Gestalt movement', American Journal of Psychology, 42:308-315, Ithaca; NY: Cornell University.
Ellis, W.D. (1938) A Source Book of Gestalt Psychology, New York: Harcourt, Brace, Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner (contains translations of portions of Die Physikalischen Gestalten in Ruhe und im Stationaren Zustand).
Hamlyn, D.W. (1957) The Psychology of Perception, New York and London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Katz, D. (1950) Gestalt Psychology: Its Nature and Significance, trans. Robert Tyson, New York: Ronald.
Nagel, E. (1961) The Structure of Science, New York: Routledge & Kegan Paul, pp. 380-97.
Petermann, B. (1929) Die Wertheimer-Koffka-Kohlersche Gestalt-theory, Leipzig (English translation, The Gestalt Theory and the Problem of Configuration, trans. Meyer Fortes, New York and London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1932).
Riser, O.L. (1931) 'The logic of Gestalt psychology', Psychological Review 38:359-68.

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