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Unformatted text preview: PRINCIPAL INFLUENCES ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF GESTALT THERAPY As a teenager, Fritz Perls was heavily involved in theatre. Later, he was trained as a psychoanalyst and studied with a number of respected analysts of his day. Among the most prominent were Karen Horney, Wilhelm Reich, Otto Fenichel, and Helene Deutsch. During the First World War he was an assistant to the Gestalt physiological psychologist Kurt Goldstein. His wife Laura, who was the co-developer of Gestalt therapy, was also trained in psychoanalysis, and she studied under Kohler and Koffka at the University of Frankfurt, as well as under existential theologians Paul Tillich and Martin Buber. Perls used to hang around the existential coffeehouses and absorbed the secular existential currents of his day as he had earlier hung aroudn theatres. After he repudiated psycholanalysis and moved to New York, he built on his theatre background by studying Moreno's psychodrama, he and Laura developed Gestalt Therapy, In paying attention...
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- Fall '09