Contributed by Emily Gainer.
In a 1986 paper given at an APA convention, Erika Fromm wrote, “I have pioneered quite a bit in my professional life, taken on joyfully many a challenge and explored novel things. Now I am at an advanced age, but nonetheless I hope to continue to investigate new things and to fight for what I believe in for some time to come” (Psychoanalysis and Hypnoanalysis: A Professional History and a Challenge, Box M5197, Folder 9). Fromm’s pioneering, challenging, and novel contributions to the field of psychology are documented in her manuscript papers. These papers are now available for research at the CHP.
Erika Fromm (1910-2003) was born to a Jewish family in Germany. During 1933, she received her Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the University of Frankfurt, studying under Max Wertheimer. After fleeing Nazi presence in Germany and Holland, Fromm immigrated to Chicago in 1938. She worked as a research assistant, held a private psychotherapy practice, and began teaching in higher education. In 1961, she became a professor in the psychology department at the University of Chicago, where she would remain until her retirement.
Fromm is considered a pioneer in the use of projective psychological testing in the United States. Fromm’s greatest impact is in the fields of psychoanalysis and hypnosis. During her career, she published over 100 scholarly articles, trained thousands of clinicians, and gave workshops across the United States. Fromm continued her work well after retirement, publishing her final book in 2000.
The Erika Fromm papers document the professional life of a psychoanalyst and clinical educator. The papers include correspondence, course materials, research files, and publications. Topics of particular note are hypnosis, self hypnosis, hynotherapy, hypnoanalysis, intelligence, dreams, and brain trauma. They also document Fromm’s professional positions and involvement in professional organizations, notably the IJCEH and the SCEH. Files relating to the self-hypnosis study conducted by Fromm are also found in this collection.
Search the finding aid for more information. Please contact us to view the manuscript materials.