Hosting Conversations about Questions that Matter
Alfred Adler was a physician, psychotherapist, and the founder of Adlerian psychology, sometimes called individual psychology. He is considered the first community psychologist, because his work pioneered attention to community life, prevention, and population health. Adlerian psychology emphasizes the human need and ability to create positive social change and impact.
Adler was born just outside of Vienna on February 7, 1870. Adler and Freud, along with Rudolf Reitler and Wilhelm Stekel, began meeting weekly during “Wednesday Night Meetings” that eventually grew to begin the psychoanalytic movement. Together, they formed the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society, of which Adler was the first president.
After serving as a doctor in the Austrian Army in World War I, Adler established a series of child guidance clinics in Austria and embarked on extensive lecture tours in the United States and Europe. To significant acclaim, he successfully promoted his psychological concepts emphasizing social interest, or gemeinschaftsgefühl.
Adler’s goal was to create a psychological movement that argued for the holistic view of an individual as well as social equality. Adler focused greatly on family dynamics, specifically parenting and family constellation, as a preventative means of addressing possible future psychological problems. With a practical and goal-oriented approach, Alfred held a theory of three life tasks – occupation, society, and love – that intermingle with one another. Success and health in each and all life tasks is dependent on cooperation.
Perhaps Adler’s most influential concept – and the one that drives the Adler School today – is that of social interest. Not to be confused as another form of extraversion, social interest should be viewed as an individual’s personal interest in furthering the welfare of others. Collaborating and cooperating with one another as individuals and communities can progress to benefit society as a whole.
Wherever there are a group of Adlerian practitioners gathered together, such as our Summer Schools or our training courses you will find an Adler's cafe which follows the socratic questionning favoured by Adler and philosophical debate about his work, psychology, life, and most of all community just as they debated such things in Vienna cafes and from which grow new ideas, enriched personal and professional development.
I have attached some information about our Summer School in England in July