With more than 4 million copies in print in the English language alone, Man's Search for Meaning, the chilling yet inspirational story of Viktor Frankl's struggle to hold on to hope during his three years as a prisoner in Nazi concentration camps, is a true classic. Beacon Press is now pleased to present a special gift edition of a work that was hailed in 1959 by Carl Rogers as"one of the outstanding contributions to psychological thought in the last fifty years." Frankl's training as a psychiatrist informed every waking moment of his ordeal and allowed him a remarkable perspective on the psychology of survival. His assertion that "the will to meaning" is the basic motivation for human life has forever changed the way we understand our humanity in the face of suffering.
Man's Search for Meaning
Viktor E. Frankl
PART ONE TRANSLATED BY ILSE LASCH PREFACE BY GORDON W. ALLPORT BEACON PRESS
TO THE MEMORY OF MY MOTHER,
Beacon Press 25 Beacon Street Boston, Massachusetts 02108-2892 www.beacon.org Beacon Press books are published under the auspices of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations. © 1959, 1962, 1984, 1992 by Viktor E. Frankl All rights reserved Printed in the United States of America First published in German in 1946 under the title Ein Psycholog erlebt das Konzentrationslager. Original English title was From Death-Camp to Existentialism. 05 04 03 02 01
Preface by Gordon W. Allport 7 Preface to the 1992 Edition II PART ONE
8 7 6 5 4 3 2
Experiences in a Concentration Camp 15
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Frankl, Viktor Emil. [Ein Psycholog erlebt das Konzentrationslager. English] Man's search for meaning: an introduction to logotherapy / Viktor E. Frankl; part one translated by Use Lasch; preface by Gordon W. Allport. — 4th ed. p. cm. Includes bibliographical references (p. ). ISBN 0-8070-1426-5 (cloth) 1. Frankl, Viktor Emil. 2. Holocaust, Jewish (1939—1945)— Personal narratives. 3. Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)— Psychological aspects. 4. Psychologists—Austria—Biography. 5. Logotherapy. I. Title. D810J4F72713 1992 i5o.ig'5—dc2o 92-21055
Logotherapy in a Nutshell 101
The Case for a Tragic Optimism 137 Selected English Language Bibliography of Logotherapy 155 About the Author
Dr. Frankl, author-psychiatrist, sometimes asks his pa tients who suffer from a multitude of torments great and small, "Why do you not commit suicide?" From their an swers he can often find the guide-line for his psychotherapy: in one life there is love for one's children to tie to; in another life, a talent to be used; in a third, perhaps only lingering memories worth preserving. To weave these slender threads of a broken life into a firm pattern of mean ing and responsibility is the object and challenge of logotherapy, which is Dr. Frankl's own version of modern exis tential analysis. In this book, Dr. Frankl explains the experience which led to his discovery of logotherapy. As a longtime prisoner in bestial concentration camps he found himself stripped to naked existence. His father, mother, brother, and his wife died in camps or were sent to the gas ovens, so that, except ing for his sister, his entire family perished in these camps. How could he—every possession lost, every value destroyed, suffering from hunger, cold and brutality, hourly expecting extermination—how could he find life worth preserving? A psychiatrist who personally has faced such extremity is a psychiatrist worth listening to. He, if anyone, should be
8 Preface able to view our human condition wisely and with compassion. Dr. Frankl's words have a profoundly honest ring, for they rest on experiences too deep for deception. What he has to say gains in prestige because of his present position on the Medical Faculty of the University of Vienna and because of the renown of the logotherapy clinics that...
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