Erich Fromm

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Erich Fromm Erich Fromm, a German-born social psychoanalyst, was born in 1900 in Frankfurt. His father was a business man and, according to Fromm, rather moody. His mother was frequently depressed, his childhood wasn't very happy. He earned his Ph.D degree from University of Heidelberg in 1922. He also studied at University of Munich, and at the Berlin Institute of Psychoanalysis. After emigrating to the United States in 1933, he established a private practice in psychiatry and taught at New York University. He wrote many books, The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness (1973) is one that particularly discusses human behavior. Toward the end of his career, he moved to Mexico City to teach at the University of Mexico. After many years of productive work he retired to Locarno, Switzerland, in 1976. In 1980 he died.

Fromm's theory was a blend of Sigmund Freud and Karl Marx. Freud, concluded that instincts determine human behavior.

Marx, saw people as being mostly shaped by their society. Fromm became the leading supporter of the idea that most human behavior is a learned response to social conditions.

Fromm applied the ideas of sociology to psychoanalysis. He studied the social and cultural process from which people come to learn how to behave according to the society they live in. Fromm focused on character traits that enhance a person's adaptation to society, which lessen inner conflict. He believed that development was concerned with diversity of cultures, and faiths. A place where ones culture or faith is reflected is in their families. He stated that we often think that our way or families way of doing things is the only way, the natural way. We learn how to do things so well that they become routine, social unconscious as Fromm put it. So, many times we believe...