Thursday, April 23, 2020

The Socialist Humanism and Psychoanalytic Critical Theory of Erich Fromm: Toward a Fresh Assessment

Fromm 5
Erich Fromm (March 23, 1900 – March 18, 1980) was a social psychologist, psychoanalyst, sociologist, humanistic philosopher, and democratic socialist whose books found a wide readership beyond the academic world. The following works are indispensable to providing a fresh assessment and critical appreciation of Fromm’s life and work. In other words, they combine to provide a rather different picture from the conclusion drawn by “leading scholars and social critics” on (loosely speaking) the Left (largely ‘New York intellectuals’) following the attack on Fromm and “neo-Freudianism” by Herbert Marcuse in Eros and Civilization: A Philosophical Inquiry into Freud (Beacon Press, 1955, and in 1966, with a new ‘Political Preface’) and their subsequent debate (1955-1956) in Dissent magazine. Lawrence J. Freidman reminds us that “decades after the encounter, leading scholars and social critics, including H. Stuart Hughes, Paul Robinson, Christopher Lasch, and Russell Jacoby, reiterated Marcuse’s line of attack against Fromm,” while dismissing or ignoring Fromm’s pivotal role in the founding years of the Frankfurt Institute (originally located at the Institute for Social Research [Institut für Sozialforschung] at Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany).
  • Anderson, Kevin and Richard Quinney, eds. Erich Fromm and Critical Criminology: Beyond the Punitive Society. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2000.
  • Burston, Daniel. The Legacy of Erich Fromm. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1991.
  • Durkin, Kieran. The Radical Humanism of Erich Fromm. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014.
  • Durkin, Kieran and Joan Braune, eds. Erich Fromms Critical Theory: Hope, Humanism, and the Future. New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2020.
  • Friedman, Lawrence J. (assisted by Anke M. Schreiber). The Lives of Erich Fromm: Love’s Prophet. New York: Columbia University Press, 2013.
  • Funk, Ranier, ed. The Clinical Erich Fromm: Personal Accounts and Papers on Therapeutic Technique. Amsterdam: Brill/Rodopi, 2009.
Related Bibliographies
(i) Beyond Capitalist-Attenuated Time: Freedom, Leisure, and Self-Realization; (ii) Beyond Inequality: Toward the Globalization of Welfare, Well-Being and Human Flourishing; (iii) Beyond Punitive Capitalist and Liberal Society; (iv) Biological Psychiatry, Sullied Psychology, & Pharmaceutical Reason, (v) Buddhism and Psychoanalysis; (vi) Dreams and Dreaming; (vii) The Emotions; (viii) Human Nature and Personal Identity; (ix) The History, Theory & Praxis of the Left in the 1960s; (x) Marxism; (xi) Marxism and Freudian Psychology; (xii) Toward a Realist Social and Political Psychology; and (xiii) Workers, the World of Work, and Labor Law.


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