Hermann Rorschach (1884-1922)

129 years ago, Hermann Rorschach (1884-1922) was about to be born in Zurich, Switzerland. A son of an art teacher, despite his talent and his father’s encouragement for him to follow his artistic vain, Rorschach decided to enrol in medical school and to specialize in psychiatry. He studied with Paul Bleuler, the psychiatrist who coined the terms “schizophrenia” and “autism” and who was very close to Sigmund Freud as he believed that an individual’s most complex feelings or reactions could be unconscious. Like Bleuler, Rorschach believed in the importance of his patients’s unconscious. It was his belief in that, his artistic facet and his medical experience that made him wonder why different people often saw different things in the same inkblots. In 1921, the year before his death, he published his book Psychodiagnostik, in which he introduced the worldwide famous Rorschach test, also known as Inkblot test. Not without controversy, by the mid-century, Rorschach’s test became the most widely used psychological test in mental health facilities. Although many say it is an unreliable test and its results are poorly verifiable, Rorschach is certainly one of the most renowned psychiatrists of the last century. You can take an online Rorschach test here.


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