On This Day … 07 October [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1927 – R.D. Laing, Scottish psychiatrist and author (d. 1989).

People (Deaths)

  • 1926 – Emil Kraepelin, German psychologist and academic (b. 1856).

R.D. Laing

Ronald David Laing (07 October 1927 to 23 August 1989), usually cited as R.D. Laing, was a Scottish psychiatrist who wrote extensively on mental illness – in particular, the experience of psychosis. Laing’s views on the causes and treatment of psychopathological phenomena were influenced by his study of existential philosophy and ran counter to the chemical and electroshock methods that had become psychiatric orthodoxy. Taking the expressed feelings of the individual patient or client as valid descriptions of personal experience rather than simply as symptoms of mental illness, Laing regarded schizophrenia as a theory not a fact. Though associated in the public mind with the anti-psychiatry movement, he rejected the label. Politically, he was regarded as a thinker of the New Left. Laing was portrayed by David Tennant in the 2017 film Mad to Be Normal.

Emil Kraepelin

Emil Wilhelm Georg Magnus Kraepelin (15 February 1856 to 07 October 1926) was a German psychiatrist.

H.J. Eysenck’s Encyclopaedia of Psychology identifies him as the founder of modern scientific psychiatry, psychopharmacology and psychiatric genetics.

Kraepelin believed the chief origin of psychiatric disease to be biological and genetic malfunction. His theories dominated psychiatry at the start of the 20th century and, despite the later psychodynamic influence of Sigmund Freud and his disciples, enjoyed a revival at century’s end. While he proclaimed his own high clinical standards of gathering information “by means of expert analysis of individual cases”, he also drew on reported observations of officials not trained in psychiatry.

His textbooks do not contain detailed case histories of individuals but mosaic-like compilations of typical statements and behaviours from patients with a specific diagnosis. He has been described as “a scientific manager” and “a political operator”, who developed “a large-scale, clinically oriented, epidemiological research programme”.

On This Day … 06 October [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1915 – Carolyn Goodman, American psychologist and activist (d. 2007).
  • 1934 – Marshall Rosenberg, American psychologist and author (d. 2015).

Carolyn Goodman

Carolyn Elizabeth Goodman (née Drucker; 06 October 1915 to 17 August 2007) was an American clinical psychologist who became a prominent civil rights advocate after her son, Andrew Goodman and two other civil rights workers, James Chaney and Michael Schwerner, were murdered by the Ku Klux Klan in Neshoba County, Mississippi, in 1964.

Politically active until age 90, Goodman came to wide public attention again in 2005. Traveling to Philadelphia, Mississippi, she testified at the murder trial of Edgar Ray Killen, a former Klan leader recently indicted in the case. On 21 June 2005, the 41st anniversary of the killings, a jury acquitted Killen of murder but found him guilty of manslaughter in the deaths of Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner.

Marshall Rosenberg

Marshall Bertram Rosenberg (06 October 1934 to 07 February 2015) was an American psychologist, mediator, author and teacher. Starting in the early 1960s, he developed nonviolent communication, a process for supporting partnership and resolving conflict within people, in relationships, and in society. He worked worldwide as a peacemaker and in 1984, founded the Centre for Nonviolent Communication, an international non-profit organisation for which he served as Director of Educational Services.

According to his biographer, Marjorie C. Witty, “He has a fierce face – even when he smiles and laughs. The overall impression I received was of intellectual and emotional intensity. He possesses a charismatic presence.”

On This Day … 04 October [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1929 – John E. Mack, American psychiatrist and author (d. 2004).

John E. Mack

John Edward Mack (04 October 1929 to 27 September 2004) was an American psychiatrist, writer, and professor and the head of the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. In 1977, Mack won the Pulitzer Prize for his book A Prince of Our Disorder on T.E. Lawrence.

As the head of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Mack’s clinical expertise was in child psychology, adolescent psychology, and the psychology of religion. He was also known as a leading researcher on the psychology of teenage suicide and drug addiction, and he later became a researcher in the psychology of alien abduction experiences.

On This Day … 03 October [2022]

People (Deaths)

  • 2014 – Benedict Groeschel, American priest, psychologist, and talk show host (b. 1933).

Benedict Groeschel

Benedict Joseph Groeschel, C.F.R. (23 July 1933 to 03 October 2014) was an American Franciscan friar, Catholic priest, retreat master, author, psychologist, activist, and television host. He hosted the television talk program Sunday Night Prime (originally Sunday Night Live) broadcast on the Eternal Word Television Network, as well as several serial religious specials.

He founded the Office for Spiritual Development for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York. He was Associate Director of the Trinity Retreat House for clergy and executive director of St. Francis House. He was professor of pastoral psychology at St. Joseph’s Seminary in New York and an adjunct professor at the Institute for Psychological Sciences in Arlington, Virginia. He was one of the founders of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal and among his close friends were Mother Teresa, Mother Angelica and Alice von Hildebrand.

On This Day … 02 October [2022]

People (Deaths)

  • 2012 – J. Philippe Rushton, English-Canadian psychologist, theorist, academic (b. 1943).

J. Philippe Rushton

John Philippe Rushton (03 December 1943 to 02 October 2012) was a Canadian psychologist and author. He taught at the University of Western Ontario until the early 1990s, and became known to the general public during the 1980s and 1990s for research on race and intelligence, race and crime, and other purported racial correlations.

Rushton’s work has been heavily criticized by the scientific community for the questionable quality of its research, with many academics arguing that it was conducted under a racist agenda. From 2002 until his death, he served as the head of the Pioneer Fund, an organization founded in 1937 to promote eugenics, which has been described as racist and white supremacist in nature, and as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Centre. He also published articles in and spoke at conferences organized by the white supremacist magazine American Renaissance.

Rushton was a Fellow of the Canadian Psychological Association and a onetime Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. In 2020, the Department of Psychology of the University of Western Ontario released a statement stating that “much of [Rushton’s] research was racist”, was “deeply flawed from a scientific standpoint”, and “Rushton’s legacy shows that the impact of flawed science lingers on, even after qualified scholars have condemned its scientific integrity.” As of 2021, Rushton has had six research publications retracted.

On This Day … 01 October [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1915 – Jerome Bruner, American psychologist and author (d. 2016).

Jerome Bruner

Jerome Seymour Bruner (01 October 1915 to 05 June 2016) was an American psychologist who made significant contributions to human cognitive psychology and cognitive learning theory in educational psychology. Bruner was a senior research fellow at the New York University School of Law. He received a B.A. in 1937 from Duke University and a Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1941. He taught and did research at Harvard University, the University of Oxford, and New York University. A Review of General Psychology survey, published in 2002, ranked Bruner as the 28th most cited psychologist of the 20th century.

On This Day … 30 September [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1897 – Charlotte Wolff, German-English physician and psychotherapist (d. 1986).
  • 1911 – Gustave Gilbert, American psychologist (d. 1977).

Charlotte Wolff

Charlotte Wolff (30 September 1897 to 12 September 1986) was a German-British physician who worked as a psychotherapist and wrote on sexology and hand analysis. Her writings on lesbianism and bisexuality were influential early works in the field.

Gustave Gilbert

Gustave Mark Gilbert (30 September 1911 to 06 February 1977) was an American psychologist best known for his writings containing observations of high-ranking Nazi leaders during the Nuremberg trials. His 1950 book The Psychology of Dictatorship was an attempt to profile the Nazi German dictator Adolf Hitler using as reference the testimonials of Hitler’s closest generals and commanders. Gilbert’s published work is still a subject of study in many universities and colleges, especially in the field of psychology.

On This Day … 29 September [2022]

People (Deaths)

  • 2007 – Yıldırım Aktuna, Turkish psychiatrist and politician, Turkish Minister of Health (b. 1930).

Yildirim Aktuna

Yıldırım Aktuna (1930 to 29 September 2007) was a Turkish psychiatrist, politician, district mayor and government minister in a number of cabinets.

Early Years

He was born 1930 in Istanbul. After completing the high school in Karşıyaka, Izmir in 1948, Yıldırım Aktuna attended the School of Medicine of the University of Istanbul as a cadet. In 1954, he graduated with Doctor of Medicine degree in the rank of a lieutenant.

Military Career

His first post was chief physician officer of the 26th Brigade at the 66th Army Division. After completing a one-year English language course at the Army Language School in Ankara, Aktuna was sent to the United States, where he attended advanced education in general medicine at the Brooke Army Medical Centre in Fort Sam Houston, San Antonio between 1958-1959.

Having returned home, Aktuna specialised in neuropsychiatry at the Gülhane Military Medical Academy in Ankara, finishing in 1962. He then served in the army as medical officer at various places in Turkey. Between 1967-1989, he was lecturer at the Kabul Military Hospital in Afghanistan. In 1970, he retired from the Turkish Army in the rank of a lieutenant colonel.

Civil Service

Switched over to civil service, he firstly was appointed Assistant Chief Physician at the Psychology Clinic of Şişli Children’s Hospital in Istanbul. He later became the chief of that clinic.

Between 1972-1973, Aktuna sojourned in Austria to pursue advanced studies in neurology and electroencephalography (EEG) at the Neurological Clinic of the University of Vienna.

In 1979, Yıldırım Aktuna was appointed Chief Physician of the Bakırköy Psychiatric Hospital in Istanbul, the largest of its art in the country. He modernised the hospital, and devoted himself to raise consciousness for public mental health and to develop contemporary policies on this subject. He established in 1983 an alcohol and drug rehabilitation centre within this hospital, the first facility in Turkey to conduct medical and psychotherapeutic treatment and research for dependency on psychoactive substances as well. For these activities, he was honoured several times by various organisations.

On This Day … 27 September [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1913 – Albert Ellis, American psychologist and author (d. 2007).

People (Deaths)

  • 2004 – John E. Mack, American psychiatrist and author (b. 1929).

Albert Ellis

Albert Ellis (27 September 1913 to 24 July 2007) was an American psychologist and psychotherapist who founded rational emotive behaviour therapy (REBT). He held MA and PhD degrees in clinical psychology from Columbia University, and was certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP). He also founded, and was the President of, the New York City-based Albert Ellis Institute. He is generally considered to be one of the originators of the cognitive revolutionary paradigm shift in psychotherapy and an early proponent and developer of cognitive-behavioural therapies.

Based on a 1982 professional survey of US and Canadian psychologists, he was considered the second most influential psychotherapist in history (Carl Rogers ranked first in the survey; Sigmund Freud was ranked third). Psychology Today noted that, “No individual—not even Freud himself—has had a greater impact on modern psychotherapy.”

John E. Mack

John Edward Mack (04 October 1929 to 27 September 2004) was an American psychiatrist, writer, and professor and the head of the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. In 1977, Mack won the Pulitzer Prize for his book A Prince of Our Disorder on T.E. Lawrence.

As the head of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Mack’s clinical expertise was in child psychology, adolescent psychology, and the psychology of religion. He was also known as a leading researcher on the psychology of teenage suicide and drug addiction, and he later became a researcher in the psychology of alien abduction experiences.

On This Day … 25 September [2022]

People (Births)

  • 1962 – Kalthoum Sarrai, Tunisian-French psychologist and journalist (d. 2010).

People (Deaths)

  • 1958 – John B. Watson, American psychologist and academic (b. 1878).
  • 2005 – Urie Bronfenbrenner, Russian-American psychologist and ecologist (b. 1917).
  • 2005 – M. Scott Peck, American psychiatrist and author (b. 1936).
  • 2013 – Bennet Wong, Canadian psychiatrist and academic, co-founded Haven Institute (b. 1930).

Kalthoum Sarrai

Kalthoum Sarrai كلثوم السراي in Arabic (25 September 1962 to 19 January 2010), best known as Cathy Sarrai, was a Tunisian-born French television presenter, anchorwoman and television personality. She was known to many French and Belgian television viewers for her role in the French version of Super Nanny, which began airing on M6 on 01 February 2005.

Sarrai was born in Tunis, Tunisia, on 25 September 1962, as one of seven children. She moved to France in 1979, where she studied child psychology before pursuing a successful career as a television presenter. Sarrai also authored three books, including an autobiography.

She began appearing on the French version of Super Nanny in 2005. The show, in which she taught parents basic child care and parenting techniques, attracted 3.7 million viewers in Belgium and France, making her a familiar personality on M6.

Kalthoum Sarrai died in Paris on Tuesday 19 January 2010,[1] of cancer at the age of 47. She was buried in Tunis.

John B. Watson

ohn Broadus Watson (09 January 1878 to 25 September 1958) was an American psychologist who popularised the scientific theory of behaviourism, establishing it as a psychological school. Watson advanced this change in the psychological discipline through his 1913 address at Columbia University, titled Psychology as the Behaviourist Views It. Through his behaviourist approach, Watson conducted research on animal behaviour, child rearing, and advertising, as well as conducting the controversial “Little Albert” experiment and the Kerplunk experiment. He was also the editor of Psychological Review from 1910 to 1915. A Review of General Psychology survey, published in 2002, ranked Watson as the 17th most cited psychologist of the 20th century.

Urie Bronfenbrenner

Urie Bronfenbrenner (29 April 1917 to 25 September 2005) was a Russian-born American psychologist who is most known for his ecological systems theory. His work with the United States government helped in the formation of the Head Start programme in 1965. Bronfenbrenner’s ability research was key in changing the perspective of developmental psychology by calling attention to the large number of environmental and societal influences on child development.

M. Scott Peck

Morgan Scott Peck (22 May 1936 to 25 September 2005) was an American psychiatrist and best-selling author who wrote the book The Road Less Travelled, published in 1978.

Peck served in administrative posts in the government during his career as a psychiatrist. He also served in the US Army and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. His army assignments included stints as chief of psychology at the Army Medical Centre in Okinawa, Japan, and assistant chief of psychiatry and neurology in the office of the surgeon general in Washington, DC. He was the medical director of the New Milford Hospital Mental Health Clinic and a psychiatrist in private practice in New Milford, Connecticut. His first and best-known book, The Road Less Travelled, sold more than 10 million copies.

Bennet Wong

Bennet Randall Wong (16 July 1930 to 25 September 2013), was a Canadian psychiatrist, author and lecturer who co-founded the Haven Institute, a residential experiential learning centre on the west coast of Canada, with Jock McKeen. His writings focused on mental illness, group psychotherapy, humanistic psychology and personal growth.