Franz Alexander

Franz Alexander (1891-1964) was a psychoanalyst and physician who studied and practiced in Berlin, Germany until he was invited to teach at the University of Chicago in the 1930s. He is considered one of the founders of psychosomatic medicine and psychoanalytic criminology. The chief focus of his research was psychosomatic illnesses and human "acting out."

Later, in collaboration with Freud and Sándor Ferenczi he developed the concept of autoplastic adaptation where it was proposed that when presented with a choice a person can choose one of two ways to react. Autoplastic adaptations are situations in which a person attempts to change themselves.The other side is called alloplastic adaptation and is when a person attempts to change the world around them. Between the 1930s and 1950s he was one of many psychological practictioners that actively sought methods to shorten the course of therapy while retaining the efficiency of longer courses of therapy.

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