From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Neo-Adlerian psychologists are those working in the tradition of, or influenced by Alfred Adler, an early associate of, and dissident from the ideas of, Sigmund Freud.


Neo-Adlerian ideas have been identified in the field of education, associated particularly with the work of Rudolf Dreikurs.[1] The Neo-Adlerian classroom model stresses the importance of the student's search for feelings of belonging.[2]


Fritz Wittels used the term 'Neo-Adlerian' to refer derogatively to the Neo-Freudians, due to their emphasis on the social aspects of psychology.[3] Heinz Ansbacher however sought to capture the Neo-Freudians as neo-Adlerians, to promote Adler's influence.[4] Henri Ellenberger would later adjudge that what he called the neo-psychoanalysts like Karen Horney and Eric Fromm would indeed more accurately be known as neo-Adlerians.[5]

Transactional Analysis has also been termed a neo-Adlerian school[6] - Eric Berne himself acknowledging that "of all those who preceded transactional analysis, Alfred Adler comes the closest to talking like a script analyst".[7] A direct line of influence runs from Adler through Harry Stack Sullivan to Thomas Anthony Harris[8] - one of the co-creators of TA[9] - with Adler's ideas on guiding fictions and the sense of inferiority feeding into Berne's concept of psychological games,[10] which can also be considered in terms of the interactions of different life style systems.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Z. Miller, Re-Theorizing Discipline in Education (2010) p. 15-6
  2. ^ 'Neo-Adlerian model'
  3. ^ Fritz Wittels, 'The Neo-Adlerians'
  4. ^ Heinz L. and Rowena Ansbacher eds., Superiority and Social Interest (1964)
  5. ^ Henri F. Ellenberger, The Discovery of the Unconscious (1970) p. 637-41
  6. ^ Erika Stern, TA, the state of the art (1984) p. 4 and p. 31
  7. ^ Eric Berne, What Do You Say After You Say Hello? (1974) p. 58
  8. ^ Thomas A. Harris, I'm OK - You're OK (1969) p. 68
  9. ^ Berne, p. xvi
  10. ^ Harris, p. 76 and p. 67
  11. ^ Ellenberger, p. 643

Further reading[edit]

Heinz L. Ansbacher, "'Neo-Freudian' or 'Neo-Adlerian'?", American Psychologist 8 (1953)

'Adlerian Psychotherapy' in R. Corsini/D. Wedding eds., Current Psychotherapies (?)

H. Cowie/D. Jennifer, New Perspectives on Bullying (2008)

External links[edit]