Hans Herrman Strupp

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Hans Hermann Strupp (August 25, 1921–October 5, 2006) was born in Frankfurt, Germany and died in the U.S. [1] He moved from Nazi Germany to the U.S. and he pursued a PhD in Psychology at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. where the Department of Psychiatry granted him with a Certificate in Applied Psychiatry for Psychologists. One of the founders of this School was Harry Stack Sullivan whose work had a large impact on Strupp's academic career and thinking.

Nazi Germany The German state from 1933 to 1945, under the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler

Nazi Germany is the common English name for Germany between 1933 and 1945, when Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party (NSDAP) controlled the country through a dictatorship. Under Hitler's rule, Germany was transformed into a totalitarian state where nearly all aspects of life were controlled by the government. The official name of the state was Deutsches Reich until 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich from 1943 to 1945. Nazi Germany is also known as the Third Reich, meaning "Third Realm" or "Third Empire", the first two being the Holy Roman Empire (800–1806) and the German Empire (1871–1918). The Nazi regime ended after the Allies defeated Germany in May 1945, ending World War II in Europe.

Psychology is the science of behavior and mind. Psychology includes the study of conscious and unconscious phenomena, as well as feeling and thought. It is an academic discipline of immense scope. Psychologists seek an understanding of the emergent properties of brains, and all the variety of phenomena linked to those emergent properties, joining this way the broader neuroscientific group of researchers. As a social science it aims to understand individuals and groups by establishing general principles and researching specific cases.

George Washington University university in Washington, D.C.

The George Washington University is a private research university in Washington, D.C. It was chartered in 1821 by an act of the United States Congress.


Contributions to research in psychotherapy

Strupp's work in the field of psychotherapy research is considered to be pioneering because he was the first to introduce the use of actual therapy session material, such as audio and videotapes from the therapy sessions, as methodologically significant tools for testing theories of psychotherapeutic change, something that was considered to be controversial up to that time. During the studies that he followed on the practise of psychotherapy these methods were widely used.

Psychotherapy is the use of psychological methods, particularly when based on regular personal interaction, to help a person change behavior and overcome problems in desired ways. Psychotherapy aims to improve an individual's well-being and mental health, to resolve or mitigate troublesome behaviors, beliefs, compulsions, thoughts, or emotions, and to improve relationships and social skills. Certain psychotherapies are considered evidence-based for treating some diagnosed mental disorders. Others have been criticized as pseudoscience.

As a prolific scholar and researcher, he published 16 books and over 300 papers. He was member of the American Psychological Association and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Furthermore, he has contributed to one third to the foundation of Society for Psychotherapy Research (SPR). From 1972 to 1973, he was the SPR's president.

American Psychological Association scientific and professional organization

The American Psychological Association (APA) is the largest scientific and professional organization of psychologists in the United States, with over 118,000 members including scientists, educators, clinicians, consultants, and students. The APA has an annual budget of around $115m. There are 54 divisions of the APA—interest groups covering different subspecialties of psychology or topical areas.

American Association for the Advancement of Science international non-profit organization promoting science

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is an American international non-profit organization with the stated goals of promoting cooperation among scientists, defending scientific freedom, encouraging scientific responsibility, and supporting scientific education and science outreach for the betterment of all humanity. It is the world's largest general scientific society, with over 120,000 members, and is the publisher of the well-known scientific journal Science.

The Society for Psychotherapy Research (SPR) is a learned society founded in 1970. It is multidisciplinary, international association for research into psychotherapy. The idea of an international society of psychotherapists was discussed at an annual meeting of the American Psychological Association in 1968.

Contributions to psychoanalysis

One of his most important works was the development of Time-Limited Psychotherapy, which is described in a treatment manual called Psychotherapy in a New Key: Time-Limited Dynamic Psychotherapy (1984) co-written by Strupp and his colleague Jeffrey Binder. In Time-Limited Psychotherapy, an integration of classical and interpersonal psychoanalytic theory is attempted, with a major result of this being the emphasis on the analysis of transference even when the external conditions, such as lesser frequency and the training of the therapist, are not those of psychoanalysis proper. Furthermore, in this manual's theory, the psychological reality is not dichotomized into veridical and distorted, with transference defined as a distortion, but it is viewed as multiple and contributed to by both participants in the interaction.

Interpersonal psychoanalysis

Interpersonal psychoanalysis is based on the theories of American psychiatrist Harry Stack Sullivan (1892–1949). Sullivan believed that the details of a patient's interpersonal interactions with others can provide insight into the causes and cures of mental disorder.

Psychoanalytic theory is the theory of personality organization and the dynamics of personality development that guides psychoanalysis, a clinical method for treating psychopathology. First laid out by Sigmund Freud in the late 19th century, psychoanalytic theory has undergone many refinements since his work. Psychoanalytic theory came to full prominence in the last third of the twentieth century as part of the flow of critical discourse regarding psychological treatments after the 1960s, long after Freud's death in 1939, and its validity is now widely disputed or rejected. Freud had ceased his analysis of the brain and his physiological studies and shifted his focus to the study of the mind and the related psychological attributes making up the mind, and on treatment using free association and the phenomena of transference. His study emphasized the recognition of childhood events that could influence the mental functioning of adults. His examination of the genetic and then the developmental aspects gave the psychoanalytic theory its characteristics. Starting with his publication of The Interpretation of Dreams in 1899, his theories began to gain prominence.

Transference the unconscious redirection of the feelings a person has about another person onto the therapist

Transference is a theoretical phenomenon characterized by unconscious redirection (projection) of the feelings a person has about their parents, as one example, on to the therapist. It usually concerns feelings from a primary relationship during childhood. At times, this projection can be considered inappropriate. Transference was first described by Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, who considered it an important part of psychoanalytic treatment.

Views on efficient psychotherapy

Strupp, much like Carl Rogers, focused much of his attention on the therapeutic relationship between the therapist and patient and not on the techniques used. He noted that the attitude of the therapist toward the patient was the most significant ingredient for a successful psychotherapy; therapists who were supportive and empathetic were the most likely to have success. His many publications include Psychotherapy: Clinical, Research and theoretical issues (1973) and (with others) Psychotherapy for better or worse (1977).

Carl Rogers American psychologist

Carl Ransom Rogers was an American psychologist and among the founders of the humanistic approach to psychology. Rogers is widely considered to be one of the founding fathers of psychotherapy research and was honored for his pioneering research with the Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions by the American Psychological Association (APA) in 1956.

The therapeutic relationship refers to the relationship between a healthcare professional and a client. It is the means by which a therapist and a client hope to engage with each other, and effect beneficial change in the client.


  1. "Obituary for Hans Strupp". Psycotherapy Research. Retrieved May 10, 2017.

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