Guide to the Research Collections

- Section -- II: -- THE HUMANITIES


Resources: Books

Psychology in its nonclinical aspects is one of the library's strong subjects, with approximately 14,100 volumes. Psychiatry as a branch of medicine is collected only selectively; specific medical areas of the subject, such as nervous diseases or epilepsy, are not collected at all. Periodical holdings are substantial on an international level, with such titles in the subject area of psychology as Archives de psychologie (1901- ), Imago (1912-34), and Journal of General Psychology (1928- ); in psychiatry, titles such as Mental Hygiene (1917- ) and American Journal of Psychiatry (1921- ). The library receives some 115 journals in psychology, applied psychology, social psychology, and related fields, and fewer than 10 titles in psychiatry. The book collections contain full holdings for major figures, as well as many

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secondary works. There are the standard editions of the leading theorists, Sigmund Freud, Carl Gustav Jung, Alfred Adler, and others, with many individual original and critical works. Also included are a number of early psychological and psychiatric books, including a French translation of Robert Whytt's work on nervous, hypochondriac, and hysteric diseases entitled Les Vapeurs (Paris, 1767).

Dreams, clairvoyance, somnambulism, and hypnotism form another important subject area; among relevant materials is Revue de l'hypnotisme (1887-1913). The collection of early American dream books has been described by Harry Weiss.2 The General Research and Humanities Division continues to collect dream books in hard covers, but does not acquire the many ephemeral paper-back publications on the subject. Hypnotism as a stage subject is of considerable interest to the Theatre Collection. In the collection of the Society of American Magicians there are the press books of the American magician Howard Thurston; the Theatre Collection also holds 25 volumes of manuscripts, letters, articles, and clippings for the period 1855-1909 relating to magic, hypnotism, spiritualism, legerdemain, and ventriloquism gathered by Dr. Saram R. Ellison. The collection maintains clipping files of reviews, photographs, and similar material filed under the name of individual hynotists. There is also a card catalog subject entry under the heading "Drama--Subjects--Hypnotism" which provides references to reviews and pictures of theatrical performances dealing with hypnotism.

The New York Public Library collection of materials on phrenology is significant. It numbers about 375 books and pamphlets and includes a run of Phrenological Journal and Magazine of Moral Science (Edinburgh, 1823-47).

Resources: Manuscripts

An extensive group of the papers of Max Wertheimer, founder of Gestalt psychology, are in the Manuscripts and Archives Division. Typescripts of articles and correspondence of James Oppenheim in the division relate to psychoanalysis, as do similar materials by Robert West and Otto Juliusburger. A 127-page typescript of Sigmund Freud's Der Mann Moses und der Monotheismus is accompanied by page proofs and the printed text of sections translated into English and published in 1939.

The papers of the Willow Springs Phrenological Society of Willow Springs, Illinois, consist of the records of proceedings from 1847 to 1851. These give much incidental information on the activities of the Society.