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Psyche and Soul in AmericaThe Spiritual Odyssey of Rollo May$
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Robert H. Abzug

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780199754373

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199754373.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 November 2021

“The Most Important Thing”

“The Most Important Thing”

16 “The Most Important Thing”
Psyche and Soul in America

Robert H. Abzug

Oxford University Press

May returns to New York when recovery is far enough along. He begins a private counseling practice, where he excels in empathy with patients and encourages a gay patient to remain gay if that is what he chooses to be. He also writes a doctoral dissertation on anxiety and begins again an analysis with Erich Fromm at the White Institute, where he also consults with Clara Thompson. In addition to Kierkegaard, Fromm’s work as well as that of Kurt Goldstein influenced the dissertation. He quickly publishes it in 1950 as The Meaning of Anxiety, a book notable for its comprehensiveness, its link of creativity with anxiety, and for May its lack of religious content. May’s father dies just before he publishes The Meaning of Anxiety and almost instantly becomes a major force in the emerging profession of psychotherapy.

Keywords:   Søren Kierkegaard, Erich Fromm, William Alanson White Institute, O.H. Mowrer, Walter Lowrie, E.T. May, The Meaning of Anxiety, Elver Barker, homosexuality

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