The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler: A Systematic Presentation in Selections from His Writings

The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler: A Systematic Presentation in Selections from His Writings

The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler: A Systematic Presentation in Selections from His Writings

The Individual Psychology of Alfred Adler: A Systematic Presentation in Selections from His Writings

Excerpt

When we hear such expressions as feelings of inferiority and insecurity, striving for self-enhancement and power, woman's revolt against her feminine role, the oversolicitous mother, the dethronement of the first‐ born, the need for affection; when maladjustment is spoken of as self‐ centeredness, psychological health as other-centeredness; psychiatry as the science of interpersonal relations, neurotic symptoms as ego-defenses and forms of aggression, to mention only a few instances—we are meeting ideas in which Alfred Adler was the pioneer from 1907, the date of his first important publication, until his death in 1937.

Yet Adler's name appears relatively infrequently in the literature of psychology and psychiatry today. How is this paradox to be explained? The explanation, in our opinion, is in large part the fact that Adler's writings are unsystematic and therefore make unsatisfactory reading. As the number of those who learned from Adler through personal contact has grown smaller, he has understandably become less well known, and others who expressed the same ideas more lucidly and more recently are referred to instead.

The purpose of the present volume is to make Adler's contributions to the theory and practice of psychology available in a systematic and at the same time authentic form. To this end we made selections from his writings and organized them with the aim of approximating the general presentation of a college textbook. Because every word in the main body of the work is Adler's, the outcome of our efforts, if we have been successful, should be the equivalent of a textbook by Adler on Individual Psychology, the name which he gave to his system.

Three reasons for the compilation of such a book might be given. As indicated at the outset, the ideas of Adler have today come into their own. Thus it would seem important to show them at their source. This was the main reason for our undertaking.

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