11 March 2019

11th March 1904 - Hilde Bruch born

On 11th March 1904 Hilde Bruch was born.

Bruch was a psychiatrist whose specialty was eating disorders, especially obesity and anorexia.

She began life in Germany and left for England and the the US after Hitler came to power and restricted Jewish activity. She had trained as a Doctor.

In the US she became a leader in the emotional aspects of eating disorders, and many years of research appeared in her 1973 book Eating Disorders: Obesity, Anorexia Nervosa, and the Person.

In the book, through case histories, she shows how people misuse eating either by over-eating or self-starvation to solve or hide problems that appear to them otherwise insoluble.

She proposes that in our affluent society the psychological experience of hunger has become distanced from the real physical need for food. Food is used in many ways culturally that are different from satisfying hunger. In childhood food could have been used to pacify a child that was upset, or withdrawn as a punishment.

Thankyou to today in psychology history for the date.

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