Famous German Psychiatrists

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 1 Karen Horney

Karen Horney
Famous As: Psychoanalyst
Birthdate: September 16, 1885
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Blankenese, Hamburg, Germany
Died: December 4, 1952

Remembered for her pioneering work on feminist psychology, Karen Horney studied medicine at a time when women weren’t allowed in universities. Going against Sigmund Freud’s concept of penis envy, she suggested the idea of womb envy. She believed psychological differences weren’t rooted in gender but rather depended on the socio-cultural influences.

 2 Alois Alzheimer

Alois Alzheimer
Famous As: Psychiatrist, Neuropathologist
Birthdate: June 14, 1864
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Marktbreit
Died: December 19, 1915

German psychiatrist and neuropathologist Alois Alzheimer is noted for identifying the first published case of presenile dementia, which his colleague and German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin later identified as Alzheimer's disease.  Alois publicly discussed his findings on brain pathology and symptoms of presenile dementia in late-1906 and penned a larger paper giving details of the disease and his findings in 1907.

 3 Karl Jaspers

Karl Jaspers
Famous As: Psychiatrist
Birthdate: February 23, 1883
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Oldenburg, Germany
Died: February 26, 1969

Twentieth-century Existentialist Karl Jaspers had initially followed in his father’s footsteps to study law, but had then switched to medicine. One of the pioneers of clinical psychiatry, he applied phenomenology to study mental illnesses and also developed psychopathological research. He was highly influenced by Immanuel Kant’s ideas.

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 4 Emil Kraepelin

Emil Kraepelin
Famous As: Psychiatrist
Birthdate: February 15, 1856
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Neustrelitz, Germany
Died: October 7, 1926

The son of a musician, Emil Kraepelin, remembered as the founder of psychiatry, was the first to differentiate between dementia praecox, now known as schizophrenia, and manic-depressive psychosis. His classification of mental illnesses influenced much of the research on the subject in the 20th century.

 5 Fritz Perls

Fritz Perls
Famous As: Psychologist, Psychiatrist
Birthdate: July 8, 1893
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Berlin
Died: March 14, 1970

Fritz Perls initially fought in World War I, following which he treated brain injuries of soldiers. He was later drawn to Freudian psychoanalysis. During World War II, he was the psychiatrist for the South African military. His Gestalt therapy, which he co-created with his wife, Laura, redefined psychology.

 6 Irmfried Eberl

Irmfried Eberl
Famous As: Physician, Psychiatrist
Birthdate: September 8, 1910
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bregenz
Died: February 16, 1948

Best known for leading the mass killing of Jews at the Treblinka extermination camp, psychiatrist Irmfried Eberl was eventually dismissed from his post because of his inefficiency in disposing of the bodies and thus causing a cremation backlog. Following the war, he hanged himself before being tried for his crimes.

 7 Kurt Schneider

Kurt Schneider
Famous As: Military physician, Psychologist, Psychiatrist, University teacher
Birthdate: January 7, 1887
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Crailsheim
Died: October 27, 1967

Chiefly known for his works on the diagnosis and understanding of schizophrenia, German psychiatrist Kurt Schneider published many papers on the subject, creating a list of the psychotic symptoms, today known as Schneiderian First-Rank Symptoms, to differentiate it from other forms of mental disorder. He also made significant contributions to personality disorders, coining term like endogenous depression and reactive depression.

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 8 Carl Wernicke

Carl Wernicke
Famous As: Anatomist, Physician, Neuroscientist, Psychiatrist, University teacher, Neurologist
Birthdate: May 15, 1848
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Tarnowskie Góry
Died: June 15, 1905

German neurologist, pathologist, and anatomist Carl Wernicke is best remembered for his extensive work on the various types of aphasia, or disorders that hinder the ability to speak or write. He also distinguished between motor aphasia and sensory aphasia, or what is now known as Wernicke's aphasia.

 9 Ernst Kretschmer

Ernst Kretschmer
Famous As: Psychiatrist
Birthdate: October 8, 1888
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Wüstenrot, Germany
Died: February 8, 1964

German psychiatrist Ernst Kretschmer believed that mental illnesses and personality traits could be linked to the types of bodies people possess. He treated hysteria patients as a military doctor in World War I. Though he opposed the Nazi regime, he stayed in Germany throughout World War II.

 10 Heinrich Hoffmann

Heinrich Hoffmann
Famous As: German physician and writer
Birthdate: June 13, 1809
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Died: September 20, 1894

A qualified physician and psychiatrist, Heinrich Hoffmann managed the state mental hospital of Frankfurt on Main. However, he is best known as an author of children’s books and for his creation Struwwelpeter, or Slovenly Peter, a character with a naughty personality and a weird appearance, initially created for his son.