HERMANN RORSCHACH

Psychology Class 2016
Hunter Harris

Biography

  • rorschachBorn November 8th, 1884
  • Died April 1st, 1922
  • Most known for his projective test known as the Rorschach inkblot test.
  • Swiss psychoanalyst
  • Enamored with Klecksography (Swiss childhood game of making pictures out of inkblots)
  • Had nickname of “Klecs” because of his fascination with the game.

 

School, Area of Focus, and Accomplishments

1904 – Académie de Neuchâtel to study botany and geology.
1904 – University of Berne for medical school
1909 – University of Zurich for graduation, specializing in psychology
1910 – Married a Russian woman named Olga Stempelin
1913 – Left job at mental institution in Switzerland, moved to Russia.
1915 – Associate director of the Herisau Asylum
1917 – Inkblots!

Rorschack Inkblot Test

  • 1917 – Rorschach learned of Szyman Hen’s studies with inkblot cards used to analyze patient’s fantasies.
  • Influenced by Carl Jung, who used word association tests to see what people think subconsciously.
  • Combined interests in psychoanalysis (analysis of psychological tendencies and behaviors) and art to create the “Rorschach Inkblot Test”
  • First researcher to use inkblots to see what patients saw in meaningless images.
  • Wrote his findings in his book, Psychodiagnostics
  • Form of Divination or Scrying (where shapes are seen in the form of symbols that have personal meaning)

Tests

  • Tested system on 300 patients and 100 control subjects
  • 10 Inkblot cards, 5 color, 5 black and white
  • Shown a card, asked for response
  • Reshown cards, asked to explain answers
  • Evaluated results based on location, quality, content, and conventionality
  • Used to make conclusions about patient’s social behavior

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Colleague Comparison

eugen_bleulerBiography of Eugene Bleuler

  • Swiss psychiatrist, eugenicist
  • Most notable for contributing to the understanding of mental illness, coined the terms schizophrenia, schizoid, autism, and ambivalence.
  • Studied medicine in Zurich, worked as medical assistant there.

Interaction with Hermann

  • Hermann was one of Bleuler’s top students at Zurich
  • Worked in university hospital’s psychiatric ward
  • Influenced Hermann with inspiration
  • Encouragd him to write his book

After his life

  • Bruno Klopfer continued Rorschach’s work where he left off, improved the test’s scoring system, and popularized projective personality tests
  • 1960’s – Rorschach’s inkblot test was the most prominently used projective test in the US, 8th in list of tests used in U.S. outpatient mental health care.
  • Test controversial, but still widely used in jails, hospitals, courtrooms, schools.
  • Used to:
    • Establish parental custody rights
    • Determine parole eligibility
    • Assess children’s emotional issues

Video