Those of you wishing to learn more about our field might wish to consult the reading list that follows: -
Analysis of Groups , ed. Graham S. Gibbard , John J. Hartman, and Richard S. Mann. San Francisco : Josey-Bass, 1974. xxiv, 444pp.
Basic for understanding the importance, nature, and dynamics of shared emotion and fantasy in groups.
Anderson, James W., “The Methodology of Psychological Biography,” Journal of Interdisciplinary History , 11(1981), 455-75
A first rate discussion of its subject.
Anzieu, Didier, The Group and the Unconscious , trans. Benjamin Kilbourne. Boston : Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1984. v, 289pp.
This is a very deep book on the emotional dynamics of large groups. Though not for the neophyte, this book is essential reading for anyone interested in group psychohistory.
The Battered Child , ed. Ray E. Helfer and Ruth S. Kempe. 4th ed., rev. & exp.; Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1987. xxiii, 470pp.
Here we have what is perhaps the basic general text on the maltreatment of children.
Beisel, David R., The Suicidal Embrace: Hitler, The Allies, and the Origins of the Second World War. Nyack, NY: Circumstantial Productions, 2003. xvi, 399pp.
Beisel has worked on this book for many years and produced one of the great psychohistorical studies of our time. This is an important work that should be closely studied by anyone interested in what we do and have to offer.
Bion, W.R., Experiences in Groups . New York : Ballentine Books, 1974. viii, 183pp.
Despite a difficult, at times ambiguous style, this remains a basic text for comprehension of group life in an emotional sense.
Children and Youth in America : A Documentary History , ed. Robert H. Bremner, et. al. 3 vols.; Cambridge , Mass: Harvard University Press, 1970-74.
An epic compendium of material on the subject.
Cohn, Norman , Europe’s Inner Demons. New York : Basic Books, 1975. xvi, 302pp.
____________, The Pursuit of the Millennium. rev. and exp. ed.; New York : Oxford University Press, 1970. 412pp.
____________, Warrant for Genocide: The Myth of the Jewish World-Conspiracy and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion . New York : Harper and Row, 1969. 303pp.
Even though Cohn tends to shy away from psychohistorical concepts, he is really a historian of group fantasy. In The Pursuit of the Millennium he deals with the effects of the belief that it is possible to establish the Kingdom of God on earth. The fantasy of the millennium is one of the most powerful in recorded history. In Europe’s Inner Demons he deals with the witchcraft persecutions and clearly demonstrates the elements of shared fantasy involved. All three of these books are of major interest to our field. Norman Cohn is a great scholar and his work merits close study.
Davis , Glen, Childhood and History in America . New York : Psychohistory Press, 1976. 281 pp.
A strong effort to put the psychogenic theory of Lloyd de Mause to the test. Even though I have some reservations about the quality of the Davis ‘ scholarship, his book is a sound extension of de Mause’s original ideas. Davis writes with great clarity and deserves our close study.
De Mause, Lloyd, The Emotional Life of Nations. New York : Karnac, 2002. ix, 454pp.
This is the basic statement of all that de Mause has learned in some 40 years of psychohistorical work. This book is truly epic in its scope. Any one wishing to understand our field must, sooner or later, study this book closely.
_____________, Foundations of Psychohistory . New York : Creative Roots, 1982. 336pp.
This book remains an important theoretical text for the field.
Demos, John, “Underlying Themes in the Witchcraft of Seventeenth-Century New England ,” American Historical Review , 75 (1970), 1311-1326.
This is a very nice modest psychohistorical discussion of a difficult subject.
Dijkstra, Bram, Idols of Perversity: Fantasies of Feminine Evil in Fin-de-Siecle Culture . New York : Oxford University Press, 1986. xi, 453pp.
______________, Evil Sisters: The Threat of Female Sexuality and the Cult of Manhood. New York : Knopf, 1996. x, 480pp.
These two books are an excellent and truly terrifying discussion of shared fantasies about women and gender. Despite his dislike of Freud these books are among the best psychohistory books written in the last 30 years.
Fox, Vivian C. and Quitt, Martin H ., Loving, Parenting and Dying: The Family Cycle in England and America , Past and Present. New York : Psychohistory Press, 1980. 488pp.
An excellent overview of its subject.
Handbook of Psychobiography, ed. William Todd Schultz. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005. xi, 380pp.
This book offers a compendium of various psychological approaches to biography. The contributors seem to shy away from use of psychoanalysis because they tend to believe that analytic theory places undue emphasis on the importance of childhood experience at the expense of later life experience. In my view this is erroneous. None-the-less anyone wishing to do psychobiographical work should closely study this book.
Hoberman, J., The Dream Life: Movies, Media, and the Mythology of the Sixties. New York: The New Press, 2003. xvii, 481pp.
This book partially inspired by Lloyd de Mause’s, Reagan’s America is important in that it demonstrates movies communicating shared fantasies. Hoberman presents with a new kind of history, important for psychohistorians to know about.
LaBarre, Weston , The Ghost Dance: The Origins of Religion. New York : Delta, 1972. xvi, 677pp.
One of the great works of psychoanalytic anthropology/ psychohistory ever written, this book is truly magisterial in its scope . Anyone interested in the shared emotional foundations of religion must read this book.
The Large Group: Dynamics and Therapy , ed. Lionel Kreeger. London : Karnac Books, 1994. 344pp.
The Large Group Revisited: The Herd, Primal Horde, Crowds and Masses, ed. Stanley Schneider and Haim Weinberg. London and New York : Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2003. 240pp.
For those interested in the psychology and dynamics of large groups these two sources are invaluable. Many of the basic papers in this area of study can be found in The Large Group . These two sources are the essential starting point for anyone wishing to comprehend large group issues.
Lawton , Henry W., The Psychohistorian’s Handbook. New York : Psychohistory Press, 1988. 241pp.
Intended as a basic introductory text, it explains the field, its ideas, how to do psychohistorical scholarship, and offers extensive bibliography for those wishing to study further.
Loewenberg, Peter , Decoding the Past: The Psychohistorical Approach. New York : Knopf, 1983. xiv, 300pp.
This book is a superior elaboration of its subject by one of the best scholars in our field.
Marvin, Carolyn and Ingle, David W., Blood Sacrifice and the Nation: Totem Rituals and the American Flag. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999. xv, 398pp.
Though it uses no psychoanalytic or psychohistorical theory, this book still is psychohistory because it centers on shared fantasies about the flag and the American culture of violence. I am not sure I agree with their arguments but the book is still worth close study. It is a very original work.
Miller, Alice, For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Child-Rearing and the Roots of Violence, trans. Hildegarde and Hunter Hannum. New York : Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1983. xix, 284pp.
Miller offers a scathing discussion of the long-term effects of child abuse on its victims.
Piven, Jerry S., “The Psychosis (Religion) of Islamic Terrorists and the Ecstasy of Violence,” Journal of Psychohistory, 32#2 (Fall 2004), 151 –201.
Though Piven writes at times in a rather difficult style, his arguments are very ably presented and well thought out, more so than most. Any one interested in understanding the dynamics and fantasies of religious extremism and terrorism should read this work very closely. It is an excellent study.
Rheingold, Joseph, The Fear of Being a Women: A Theory of Maternal Destructiveness. New York : Grune & Stratton, 1964. xii, 756pp.
This book deals with the dynamics of the mother-daughter relationship and child abuse. Though controversial it is awesome in its detail. Be warned some of this book is quite terrifying.
Stein, Howard, The Psychoanthropology of American Culture. New York : Psychohistory Press, 1985. 168pp.
This collection of important papers provides an excellent introduction to the work of a great scholar.
Tauber, Gisela, “Reconstruction in Psychoanalytic Biography,” Journal of Psychohistory, 7#2 (Fall 1979), 189-207.
A first rate example of psychobiography, modest and to the point.
Volkan, Vamik D., et. al, The Third Reich in the Unconscious: Transgenerational Transmission and its Consequences. New York: Brunner-Routledge, 2002. xvii, 211pp.
This deals with a significant topic –the emotional transmission of group trauma from generation to generation – that is of considerable importance to those of us interested in group psychohistory.
Wallace, Anthony F.C. , The Death and Rebirth of the Seneca. New York : Vintage, 1972. xii, 384pp.
One of the best interdisciplinary studies I have found in 30+ years of study.
Though by no means all-inclusive this list will help show what psychohistory has to offer and get you started in learning about our field. Suggestions for this list, feedback pro or con, and further inquires may be directed to Henry Lawton, IPA Secretary at HWLIPA@GMAIL.COM