The best psychoanalysis books

Who picked these books? Meet our 91 experts.

91 authors created a book list connected to psychoanalysis, and here are their favorite psychoanalysis books.
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Dalí. The Paintings

By Robert Descharnes, Gilles Néret,

Book cover of Dalí. The Paintings

Alan Pierce Author Of An Artist's Odyssey: Chasing Ghosts, Masters & The Business of Art

From the list on Maestros of the art world and prisms of thought.

Who am I?

I first started art when I was nine years old, but my art journey really started after seeing the Sistine Chapel and Michelangelo’s work at age 14. This experience changed my life and from there, I continued on with fourteen years of formal art education. The book details my experience and journey as a student, instructor, and professional artist over a thirty-year time period across three continents. I wrote An Artist’s Odyssey to help young artists or artists transitioning into art as a profession to help them avoid the pitfalls of the art world and supplement the necessary business acumen required to make a sustainable career in the art world.

Alan's book list on Maestros of the art world and prisms of thought

Discover why each book is one of Alan's favorite books.

Why did Alan love this book?

Dalí. The Paintings is one of the most complete compilations of works I’ve seen, and it includes the examination of one of the most prolific and controversial figures in art. Salvador Dali is a genius. He took his artistic skill and vision across so many different genres of the arts. The book is a fascinating journey into his mind and work. I learned a tremendous amount regarding composition, palette and tone decisions, and of course realism. I loved the idea that you can inspire the mind, leading it into new thought patterns by presenting something that is different or strange. 

By Robert Descharnes, Gilles Néret,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dalí. The Paintings as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Painter, sculptor, writer, and filmmaker, Salvador Dali (1904-1989) was one of the century's greatest exhibitionists and eccentrics-and was rewarded with fierce controversy wherever he went. He was one of the first to apply the insights of Sigmund Freud and psychoanalysis to the art of painting, approaching the subconscious with extraordinary sensitivity and imagination.

This publication presents the artist's painted oeuvre. After many years of research, Robert Descharnes and Gilles Neret finally located the paintings of this highly prolific artist. Many of the works had been inaccessible for years-in fact so many that almost half the illustrations in this book had…

The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious

By C.G. Jung, Gerhard Adler (translator),

Book cover of The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious

Antonio Zadra Author Of When Brains Dream: Exploring the Science and Mystery of Sleep

From the list on the science of dreams.

Who am I?

Although I had many intriguing dreams during my childhood, including fantastic flying dreams, the idea of becoming a sleep scientist never crossed my mind. All that changed during my first year in college. It was then that I experienced an exceptionally long and vivid lucid dream that changed my life; it was because of this dream that I decided to become a dream researcher. Today, I’m a professor of psychology at the University of Montreal, director of the department’s Dream Research Laboratory, and have published over 100 scientific articles and book chapters on sleep and dreams. I don’t have as many flying dreams as I once did, but I do have a really cool job while awake. 

Antonio's book list on the science of dreams

Discover why each book is one of Antonio's favorite books.

Why did Antonio love this book?

Jung proposed many fascinating ideas about the inner workings of the mind. His concept of the archetypes and of the collective unconscious are two of his best-known contributions, and both are intimately tied to his conceptualization of dreams. The idea that dreams not only emanate from our personal unconscious, but also from our collective unconscious (a deep stratum of the unconscious common to all humankind) and contain universal patterns, images, and dispositions, has helped countless people develop a deeper understanding of their dreams.

What’s more, this book exposes Jung’s view of dreaming as a wholesome, natural process that can give rise to creative—even transcendent—experiences featuring personal challenges, unmapped potentials, and elements of one’s personality. Not always the easiest of reads, but highly rewarding. 

By C.G. Jung, Gerhard Adler (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Essays which state the fundamentals of Jung's psychological system: "On the Psychology of the Unconscious" and "The Relations Between the Ego and the Unconscious," with their original versions in an appendix.

Book cover of The Undiscovered Self: The Dilemma of the Individual in Modern Society

Zachary Austin Behlok Author Of Manipulating Nature: An Existential Essay Regarding Humanity's Impact on the World Around Us

From the list on finding meaning within your life.

Who am I?

For as long as I can remember, it has been of the utmost importance to find meaning in life, both for myself and for everyone else sharing this planet. I have spent much of my time over the course of the past few years pushing for a continued level of discourse in the field of philosophy. I have studied at and attended various educational institutions including Eastern Florida State College, The Florida Institute of Technology, Harvard University, and The University of Cambridge – the studies at such range between philosophy, psychology, behavior analysis, and engineering. I hope that my work will be of some assistance in pushing humanity towards positive progress.

Zachary Austin's book list on finding meaning within your life

Discover why each book is one of Zachary Austin's favorite books.

Why did Zachary Austin love this book?

In this text, the famed clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst Carl Jung, gives his analysis on the world around us, in a way that aims to provide the reader with a higher level of understanding of the effects of such a world on our minds as individuals. For me, this piece really highlighted the ways in which the governmental powers above us have a grasp on the ways in which we live our lives, and are subsequently affected mentally. 

By C.G. Jung,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Undiscovered Self as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Written three years before his death, The Undiscovered Self combines acuity with concision in masterly fashion and is Jung at his very best. Offering clear and crisp insights into some of his major theories, such as the duality of human nature, the unconscious, human instinct and spirituality, Jung warns against the threats of totalitarianism and political and social propaganda to the free-thinking individual. As timely now as when it was first written, Jung's vision is a salutary reminder of why we should not become passive members of the herd.

With a new foreword by Sonu Shamdasani.

The Sane Society

By Erich Fromm,

Book cover of The Sane Society

Stephen Palmer Author Of Beautiful Intelligence

From the list on that explain the mystery of consciousness.

Who am I?

For thirty-five years I’ve studied and written about consciousness, the evolution of the mind, and the development of human social and cultural forms. I think we’re all fascinated by who we are and why we have minds. In my case, that fundamental question, which we must all answer in some way during our lives, has become a drive to bridge our theory of consciousness with a full description of the human condition. I believe we cannot progress ethically without such a bridge. Although in my novels I don’t usually write explicitly on such themes, they’re always present, providing the framework in which my characters live their lives.

Stephen's book list on that explain the mystery of consciousness

Discover why each book is one of Stephen's favorite books.

Why did Stephen love this book?

Although not Fromm’s best-known book, The Sane Society is crucial because it states for the first time a description of the human condition. I was astonished when I first read it, as it presented to me the possibility that the human condition could be described, and, therefore by implication, understood, something which had never before occurred to me. Fromm’s thesis is that society in the 20th century, when he was writing, can be characterised as insane, because it does not meet humanity’s real needs. Part of the revelation of this book is that such needs can be developed from an analysis of the human condition. Since reading the book, I have followed Fromm’s conviction that a real and true description of ourselves is crucial to humane ethical progress. 

By Erich Fromm,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Sane Society as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

First published in 1998. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

The Orpheus Project

By Valerie Sinason,

Book cover of The Orpheus Project

Tricia Wennell Author Of Because It Didn't Stop When It Ended

From the list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor.

Who am I?

I'm a survivor of repeated physical, psychological, and sexual abuse in childhood and have significant lived experience of the long-lasting and devastating impact of abuse. I was a social worker for 27 years and am a co-founder of The National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC). In my 27 years in social work and 20 years involvement in NAPAC I heard of many accounts from adult survivors of various types of abuse. One of the recommendations of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is to introduce Mandatory Reporting. I believe this is a must to help prevent and or reduce the risk of abuse for our children at the earliest possible stage.

Tricia's book list on the impact of abuse in childhood from a survivor

Discover why each book is one of Tricia's favorite books.

Why did Tricia love this book?

I know Valerie through my voluntary work with survivors and am aware of her work at the Clinic for Dissociative Studies.

She has years of experience as a psychoanalyst and psychotherapist working with trauma, disability, dissociation, and torture so Valerie knows what she is talking about. In this book she uses her knowledge and expertise to cleverly weave a background of fact that people would find too hard to believe into a brilliant work of fiction.

Her book left me wondering, ‘Does that sort of thing really happen’? It does. Children continue to be at risk and adult survivors continue to live with the trauma of the abuse they experienced.

By Valerie Sinason,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Orpheus Project as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's Christmas Eve, and a young woman with Down's syndrome has just disclosed abuse by two men. The problem is she is a member of the British aristocracy and the men she accuses are a top politician and a rock star. How does a national health team struggle with the situation of alleged abuse by the elite and super rich? Despite a traitor in their midst, the team uncovers the appalling reality of the abusive international cult known as The Orpheus Project with its mysterious American spokesperson and powerful connections. This is the world of conspiracy theories; the Orpheus Project…

The Angels Wept

By Jack Roney,

Book cover of The Angels Wept

Gill D. Anderson Author Of Primed for Vengeance

From the list on psychological thrillers delving into human psyche.

Who am I?

I've always been fascinated by people and the life stories that shape who they are. From a young age, I’ve observed people’s idiosyncrasies closely and as I grew older, I wondered about nature versus nature debate (how much of your personality is innate versus how much life events and familial patterns shape who you become). My background in child protection social work and studies of sociology, psychology and human development have also strengthened my understanding of the theories behind each human emotion. I have almost 20 years of experience working in child protection, and as such, I have a well-rounded understanding of trauma, and the ongoing effects of this throughout the life span.

Gill's book list on psychological thrillers delving into human psyche

Discover why each book is one of Gill's favorite books.

Why did Gill love this book?

This is a nail-biting thriller set in rural Australia that centres around the protagonist Jarrod O'Connor, a weary detective who is exhausted due to the harrowing case he is investigating. Three children lose their parents in the most brutal way and the man responsible is more dangerous than O'Connor could ever begin to imagine. The antagonist is presented as a well-rounded character whom the reader gets to psychoanalyse as we consider whether this man was simply born evil, or whether he is an abomination of human nature. From derelict farmhouses to cosy suburbia, the settings are vividly described in each scene. The cast of characters is well defined and the story unravels at just the right pace to keep the reader turning the pages which is a must!

By Jack Roney,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Angels Wept as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


A double homicide. A detective racing against time to protect three innocent lives. A madman hellbent on revenge.

This riveting suspense thriller is set in the rural Australian town of Lockyer. Detective Sergeant Jarrod O'Connor is thrust into the centre of a baffling double homicide case. A couple are gunned down inside their idyllic country homestead in the dead of night. Three children barely escape with their lives and hold the key to breaking the case wide open. In search of a motive,…

Otto Rank

By Esther Menaker,

Book cover of Otto Rank: A Rediscovered Legacy

Jeff Greenberg Author Of The Worm at the Core: On the Role of Death in Life

From the list on the core desires that guide human behavior.

Who am I?

I am a Regents Professor of Psychology at the University of Arizona. Ever since I was a child growing up in the South Bronx, I have been interested in why people are so driven to believe they are right and good, and why there is so much prejudice in the world. This has led to me to a lifelong exploration of the basic motivations that guide people’s actions, and how these motivations influence how people view themselves and others, and the goals they pursue.

Jeff's book list on the core desires that guide human behavior

Discover why each book is one of Jeff's favorite books.

Why did Jeff love this book?

This book summarizes the contributions of Otto Rank, the brilliant and influential psychoanalyst. Rank focused on two core psychological motivations, the desires for psychological security on the one hand, and for stimulation, growth, and creativity on the other. His work illuminates how these desires often work in concert but also often can be in opposition over the course of the lifespan, contributing to guilt, anxiety, and stunting growth. Rank’s analysis inspired the development of both existential psychology and humanistic psychology. Rank’s approach to psychological well-being is based on accepting and even affirming the limitations of life, understanding what you really want in life, and developing the will to move creatively toward achieving those goals so that one can live an authentic and satisfying life.   

By Esther Menaker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Otto Rank as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

Meeting the Shadow

By Connie Zweig, Jeremiah Abrams,

Book cover of Meeting the Shadow: The Hidden Power of the Dark Side of Human Nature

Jon Marro Author Of The Keepers of Color: A Creative Hero's Journey Into the World Within

From the list on to help you become unafraid of the dark.

Who am I?

From the time I could hold a crayon, I was drawing. I often don’t know how I truly feel about something until I make art about it. Led by imagination and curiosity, I'm a seasoned traveler in liminal spaces and love guiding people between the mystical and the mundane. With 20-plus years of experience as an Artist and Creative Director, I've discovered that solutions to any problem can be found through triumphs in imagination and a willingness to view the situation from a different perspective. By peeking into my own shadow, darkness, and hidden places, I've gained a profound reverence for the human soul and deeper compassion for what it is to be alive.

Jon's book list on to help you become unafraid of the dark

Discover why each book is one of Jon's favorite books.

Why did Jon love this book?

I feel like this book was the best college course I never got to take. Meeting The Shadow is a collection of essays from psychologists, therapists, scholars, and artists who have scoured the depths of the psyche. I love the work of Carl Jung, but I’ve found it quite difficult to parse through entire books of his. This book however, by drawing from such a diverse group of thinkers makes shadow work incredibly accessible, captivating, and illuminating. It is also formatted into specific sections like Emotional Suppression, Sexuality, The Dark Side of Spirituality, The Psychology of Evil, The Shadow of Politics, Dream Analysis, Shadow in Gender, and Owning Your Dark Side Through Art & Creativity. There’s something for everyone in here, every chapter a dark and alluring cave inviting you to explore its harrowing and majestic landscape. I can’t recommend this book enough for anyone being called to look within…or…

By Connie Zweig, Jeremiah Abrams,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Meeting the Shadow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The author offers exploration of self and practical guidance dealing with the dark side of personality based on Jung's concept of "shadow," or the forbidden and unacceptable feelings and behaviors each of us experience.

The Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1931-1934

By Anaïs Nin, Gunther Stuhlmann (editor),

Book cover of The Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1931-1934

Hillary S. Webb Author Of The Friendliest Place in the Universe: Love, Laughter, and Stand-Up Comedy in Berlin

From the list on deliciously out-of-the-box memoirs by women.

Who am I?

I’m a cultural anthropologist with a passion for exploring how we humans make meaning of the wonderful, terrible, startling, often-absurd existence in which we find ourselves. My research has taken me from NYC’s underground occult scene to the conflict-resolution strategies of Central Peru; from circus performers in Portland, Maine, grappling with their physical potential, to a comedy club in Berlin where I set out to discover the secret sauce for evoking “collective joy” amongst strangers. I am drawn to artistic works that mix genres and defy categorization… and thus have a penchant for alienating editors, librarians, and bookstore owners who struggle to identify on which shelf my books belong. 

Hillary's book list on deliciously out-of-the-box memoirs by women

Discover why each book is one of Hillary's favorite books.

Why did Hillary love this book?

Volume 1 of Nin’s series is my rainy day read when I don’t want to leave the house but still want to feel connected to humanity. It’s sleepy. There’s no real plot. What drama occurs takes place primarily within the author’s mind as she reflects upon what it is to be an ambitious writer (specifically, an ambitious female writer) in 1930s bohemian Paris. There is plenty of Eros in it—most famously her relationship with Henry and June Miller. But, again, this remains primarily within the author’s mind, acting as further fodder in her quest to uncover her truest emotional core. 

**What exactly is the difference between a “memoir” and a “diary”? Please write to me via my website if you have thoughts on this.

By Anaïs Nin, Gunther Stuhlmann (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1931-1934 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The acclaimed author details her bohemian life in 1930s Paris—including her famous affair with Henry Miller—in the classic first volume of her diaries.

Born in France to Cuban parents, Anais Nin began keeping a diary at the age of eleven and continued the practice for the rest of her life. Confessional, scandalous, and thoroughly absorbing, her diaries became one of the most celebrated literary projects of the twentieth century. Writing candidly of her marriages and affairs—including those with psychoanalyst Otto Rank and author Henry Miller—Nin presents a passionate and detailed record of a modern woman’s journey of self-discovery.

Edited and…

I Who Have Never Known Men

By Jacqueline Harpman, Ros Schwartz (translator),

Book cover of I Who Have Never Known Men

Caraline Brown Author Of The Candlelit Menagerie

From the list on set in a post apocalyptic future.

Who am I?

I love writing historical fiction. I enjoy the research and creating long-lost worlds filled with little-known historical accuracies that intrigue my readers. It is no surprise then that I enjoy reading about the future - the other side of the coin. I always find it interesting to see how writers create a post-apocalyptic society. What was the catastrophic event? (TCE) What caused it and how do the different characters react to adversity when their old world is taken away from them? Inevitably they have to survive in the new system but will they have learned their lesson or will they return to their old ways?  

Caraline's book list on set in a post apocalyptic future

Discover why each book is one of Caraline's favorite books.

Why did Caraline love this book?

I cannot get this book out of my head. Published nearly twenty years ago, I’d never heard of it before so was delighted to find it was as good as it is. It’s the story of a young girl trapped in a cage with thirty nine other women. Male guards patrol the cage but never engage with their prisoners who have forgotten why they are there. Our heroine has no memory of her mother and the reader never finds out why, whether a TCE occurred or even if they are on earth. One day an alarm goes off just as a guard is opening their cage and the women escape – but to what? Often a frustrating read without satisfactory answers, the reader is still drawn into the protagonist’s world.

By Jacqueline Harpman, Ros Schwartz (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked I Who Have Never Known Men as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Ursula K. LeGuin meets The Road in a post-apocalyptic modern classic of female friendship and intimacy.

Deep underground, thirty-nine women live imprisoned in a cage. Watched over by guards, the women have no memory of how they got there, no notion of time, and only a vague recollection of their lives before.

As the burn of electric light merges day into night and numberless years pass, a young girl—the fortieth prisoner—sits alone and outcast in the corner. Soon she will show herself to be the key to the others' escape and survival in the strange world that awaits them above…

Jung on Active Imagination

By C.G. Jung, Joan Chodorow (editor),

Book cover of Jung on Active Imagination

Shaun McNiff Author Of Art Heals: How Creativity Cures the Soul

From the list on art healing.

Who am I?

By chance, just over 50 years ago, I became an art therapist in a state hospital on the Northshore of Boston where I have always lived. With support from Rudolf Arnheim at Harvard University and others, I committed myself to furthering personal and community well-being through art. In my mid-twenties I established a graduate program at Lesley University which spawned an international community of expressive arts therapy. I have worked worldwide in advancing art healing and art-based research. Now University Professor Emeritus, and for the first time without a full-time position, I am trying to embrace the unpredictable ways of creation, and as I wrote, Trust the Process.

Shaun's book list on art healing

Discover why each book is one of Shaun's favorite books.

Why did Shaun love this book?

C. G. Jung anticipated everything we do today, and more, with his practice of active imagination over 100 years ago. I have used this book as a primary reading in my courses. I also consider it to be among the best books dealing with the creative process, especially the emphasis on how the individual ego, or person of the artist, is a participant in a larger intelligence of creative imagination. We relax a grip on the controls to enable the expression to manifest itself, as Jung personally demonstrates in The Red Book, Liber Novus, just recently available to the public.

By C.G. Jung, Joan Chodorow (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Jung on Active Imagination as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

All the creative art psychotherapies (art, dance, music, drama, poetry) can trace their roots to C. G. Jung's early work on active imagination. Joan Chodorow here offers a collection of Jung's writings on active imagination, gathered together for the first time. Jung developed this concept between the years 1913 and 1916, following his break with Freud. During this time, he was disoriented and experienced intense inner turmoil --he suffered from lethargy and fears, and his moods threatened to overwhelm him. Jung searched for a method to heal himself from within, and finally decided to engage with the impulses and images…

Freud's Patients

By Mikkel Borch-Jacobsen,

Book cover of Freud's Patients: A Book of Lives

Todd Dufresne Author Of The Late Sigmund Freud: Or, The Last Word on Psychoanalysis, Society, and All the Riddles of Life

From the list on Freud and his legacy.

Who am I?

I am a professor of philosophy and editor or author of 12 books. I started out in ‘Freud Studies’ in the 1990s with no agenda, just a deep interest in Freud’s ideas. Since then I’ve written quite a lot on it. Unfortunately, the field is so contentious, so overrun with books by former patients and analysts, that casual readers couldn’t possibly make heads or tails of it. Readers are best served by reading complete works of Freud and making their own assessments. After that, they can look at Freud’s voluminous and eye-opening correspondence with colleagues. Then they can consult good books, and lists of recommended works, that put them in the right direction.

Todd's book list on Freud and his legacy

Discover why each book is one of Todd's favorite books.

Why did Todd love this book?

In principle, psychoanalytic theory and practice rely on evidence adduced from the clinical case studies of patients. Freud, however, presented very few such cases. With this in mind, Borch-Jacobsen has done something of permanent importance to the field: he researched and wrote 38 ‘lost’ and unofficial case studies of Freud’s patients and gathered them all into one volume. The book as such functions as a shocking disconfirmation of everything we thought we knew about Freud the man, the theorist, and the therapist. And, best of all, it does so in plain, highly accessible language.  

By Mikkel Borch-Jacobsen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Freud's Patients as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Everyone knows the characters described by Freud in his case histories: 'Dora', the 'Rat Man', the 'Wolf Man'. But what do we know of the people, the lives behind these famous pseudonyms: Ida Bauer, Ernst Lanzer, Sergius Pankejeff? Do we know the circumstances that led them to Freud's consulting-room, or how they fared - how they really fared - following their treatments?
And what of those patients about whom Freud wrote nothing, or very little: Pauline Silberstein, who threw herself from the fourth floor of her analyst's building; Elfriede Hirschfeld, Freud's 'grand-patient' and 'chief tormentor'; the fashionable architect Karl Mayreder;…

Psychoanalysis and Buddhism

By Jeremy D. Safran,

Book cover of Psychoanalysis and Buddhism: An Unfolding Dialogue

Alvin Raja Hornstein Author Of Working With the Dying: Compassion, Shame, and the Illusion of Loss

From the list on how psychotherapy and meditation work together.

Who am I?

I've been a meditator for fifty years, learning from many teachers. I've been a psychotherapist for twenty years. The connections between meditation and psychotherapy are subtle and powerful. When I started my psychology studies, I went to my Zen teacher and asked for his guidance. I knew I couldn't survive the academic path without more depth in my meditation practice. There were two professors who captured my attention: one, the most psychoanalytic teacher at my school, and one, a student of the same Zen master who taught Leonard Cohen. They guided my research. If you're a psychotherapist, are in psychotherapy yourself, or are a meditator, you will love these books.

Alvin's book list on how psychotherapy and meditation work together

Discover why each book is one of Alvin's favorite books.

Why did Alvin love this book?

When I needed a book to recommend to a group I joined on Buddhism and psychoanalysis, this was the one I chose. It's a collection of essays by some of the most important thinkers on this topic. It begins with Jack Engler's seminal essay about how you have to be somebody before you can be nobody. Reading this was like coming home for me, discovering that in my struggle to understood how Zen had a place in psychoanalytic thinking. It's more than simply combining mindfulness and cognitive behavioral therapy. Jeremy Safran, the editor, was beloved by students and colleagues, and his murder in a burglary was a tragic loss.

By Jeremy D. Safran,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Psychoanalysis and Buddhism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"What a wonderful book! Jeremy Safran has assembled an absolutely stellar group of writers and has himself contributed an illuminating introduction. The essays are riveting and the book is the rare edited collection with real thematic unity. If you think you might have an interest in the intersection of psychoanalysis and Buddhism, this is the place to start. If you already know you're interested, once you look at the table of contents you'll find (at least I did) that you want to let Psychoanalysis and Buddhism displace whatever you were going to read next."--Donnel B. Stern, PhD, author of Unformulated…

Vienna Blood

By Frank Tallis,

Book cover of Vienna Blood

Rachel McMillan Author Of The Mozart Code

From the list on set in Vienna and will create a lifelong love for the city.

Who am I?

I am the author of the Herringford and Watts mysteries, the Van Buren and DeLuca mysteries, and the Three Quarter Time series of contemporary Viennese-set romances. I am also the author of The London Restoration. My non-fiction includes Dream, Plan and Go: A Travel Guide to Inspire Independent Adventure and A Very Merry Holiday Movie Guide. I live in Toronto, Canada.

Rachel's book list on set in Vienna and will create a lifelong love for the city

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Why did Rachel love this book?

The second in the Liebermann Papers: a mystery series featuring Freud-student Max Liebermann noted as literature’s first psychoanalytic detective who helps the pragmatic and gruff Detective Inspector Oskar Rheinhardt solve some of fin-de-siecle Vienna’s most dastardly crimes. While since made into a successful PBS series, the book’s atmospheric rendering of the Baroque jewel’s opulence is countered by the stark portrayals of anti-semitism, paranoia, and the primitive, cruel, and rudimentary techniques used to “treat” patients suffering from mental disorders.  

By Frank Tallis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Vienna Blood as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the grip of a Siberian winter in 1902, a serial killer in Vienna embarks upon a bizarre campaign of murder. Vicious mutilation, a penchant for arcane symbols, and a seemingly random choice of victim are his most distinctive peculiarities. Detective Inspector Oskar Rheinhardt summons a young disciple of Freud - his friend Dr. Max Liebermann - to assist him with the case. The investigation draws them into the sphere of Vienna's secret societies - a murky underworld of German literary scholars, race theorists, and scientists inspired by the new evolutionary theories coming out of England. At first, the killer's…

Book cover of Energies and Patterns in Psychological Type: The Reservoir of Consciousness

Roger R. Pearman Author Of I'm Not Crazy, I'm Just Not You: The Real Meaning of the 16 Personality Types

From the list on personality and psychological type.

Who am I?

I have been using and research psychological type for 45 years in my various career roles—director of a university learning center, chief human resources officer, and independent consultant. I’ve yet to find a more practical and useful model for understanding human differences. The constructive use of differences is urgently needed in our age, as well as the goal of type development: making perceptions clearer and judgments more sound.

Roger's book list on personality and psychological type

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Why did Roger love this book?

Jungian analyst John Beebe has put his best thinking into psychological type with this look at his conceptualization of the eight functions of type. Beebe outlines how psychological energies pay out in everyday life and how we can leverage the insight for personal growth and well-being.

By John Beebe,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Energies and Patterns in Psychological Type as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book encapsulates John Beebe's influential work on the analytical psychology of consciousness. Building on C. G. Jung's theory of psychological types and on subsequent clarifications by Marie-Louise von Franz and Isabel Briggs Myers, Beebe demonstrates the bond between the eight types of consciousness Jung named and the archetypal complexes that impart energy and purpose to our emotions, fantasies, and dreams. For this collection, Beebe has revised and updated his most influential and significant previously published papers and has introduced, in a brand new chapter, a surprising theory of type and culture.

Beebe's model enables readers to take what they…

Double Blind

By Edward St Aubyn,

Book cover of Double Blind

Rupert Sheldrake Author Of The Science Delusion: Freeing the Spirit of Enquiry

From the list on science, consciousness, and spirituality.

Who am I?

I am a biologist and I am also interested in spiritual explorations and sacred places. These books discuss some of the most interesting issues in science, and the nature of ultimate consciousness - the primary subject of theology, consciousness. I am also very interested in spiritual practices that have measurable effects, as discussed in my books Science and Spiritual Practices and Ways to Go Beyond and Why They Work.

Rupert's book list on science, consciousness, and spirituality

Discover why each book is one of Rupert's favorite books.

Why did Rupert love this book?

I read very few novels, but Edward St Aubyn is my favourite contemporary novelist. His writing is brilliant, funny and always intelligent. Of all his books, this new novel is my favourite because it not only tells a good story but also explores the very frontiers of contemporary science and of the paradigm shift going on within it. And it is amazingly well informed scientifically. In some cases it may be anticipating scientific advances that will occur in coming years; it does not simply describe what has already happened.

By Edward St Aubyn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Double Blind as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'I was gripped by it' IAN McEWAN

Three lives collide, not one of them will emerge unchanged - the exhilarating new novel from the author of the Patrick Melrose series.

When Olivia meets a new lover, Francis, just as she is welcoming her dearest friend Lucy back from New York, her life expands dramatically. Her connection to Francis, a committed naturalist living off-grid, is immediate and startling. Eager to involve Lucy in her joy, Olivia introduces the two - but Lucy has news of her own that binds the trio unusually close.

Over the months that follow, Lucy's boss Hunter,…


By Jacques Lacan, Bruce Fink (translator),

Book cover of Écrits

Adrian Johnston Author Of Zizek's Ontology: A Transcendental Materialist Theory of Subjectivity

From the list on understanding the work of Slavoj Žižek.

Who am I?

Thanks to developing interests in both psychoanalysis and German idealism during my time as a student, I came across Slavoj Žižek’s writings in the mid-1990s. Žižek immediately became a significant source of inspiration for my own efforts at interfacing philosophies with psychoanalysis. By the time I began writing my dissertation – which became my first book, Time Driven: Metapsychology and the Splitting of the Drive – I had the great fortune to meet Žižek. He soon agreed to serve as co-director of my dissertation and we have remained close ever since. I decided to write a book demonstrating that Žižek is not dismissible as a gadfly preoccupied with using popular culture and current events merely for cheap provocations.

Adrian's book list on understanding the work of Slavoj Žižek

Discover why each book is one of Adrian's favorite books.

Why did Adrian love this book?

One prominent feature of Žižek’s oeuvre that initially brought him to fame is his impressive ability to make Lacan’s writings and ideas crystal-clear and tangibly concrete—and this by contrast with Lacan himself, who often is described as “notoriously difficult.” Écrits is Lacan’s magnum opus, containing his most important essays and articles from the 1930s through the mid-1960s. Although the volumes of Lacan’s Seminar are comparatively easier to read, Écrits provides the single most comprehensive survey of Lacan’s thinking provided by Lacan himself. This 1966 book contains such Lacanian contributions to psychoanalytic theory as the mirror stage, the unconscious structured like a language, and the Real-Symbolic-Imaginary triad. Neither Lacan nor Žižek can be fully comprehended without a tour of the Écrits.

By Jacques Lacan, Bruce Fink (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Écrits as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Brilliant and innovative, Jacques Lacan's work lies at the epicenter of modern thought about otherness, subjectivity, sexual difference, the drives, the law, and enjoyment. This new translation of his complete works offers welcome, readable access to Lacan's seminal thinking on diverse subjects touched upon over the course of his inimitable intellectual career.

Saussure For Beginners

By W. Terrence Gordon, Abbe Lubell (illustrator),

Book cover of Saussure For Beginners

Tony Sandy Author Of Logic List English: Rhyming Word etc. - Vol 1 A

From the list on honest communication and language usage.

Who am I?

What qualifies me to compile this list of books, probably goes back to my childhood and the confusion I felt about human society and its conflict in word usage, compared to actual meaning. This fascination with psychology and linguistics, culminated in me reading perhaps hundreds of books, some of which are included here. My mother described me as a quiet baby and a child who would only say something, if they thought it was important, possible indicators of autism and the little professor syndrome of silent observation and study.

Tony's book list on honest communication and language usage

Discover why each book is one of Tony's favorite books.

Why did Tony love this book?

In Saussure for Beginners, by Terrence Gordon and Abbe Lubell, we discover another linguist like Wittgenstein. While the latter talked about it being a tool for communication (social, there is no private language he famously said), the former just said that they were more simply signs, indicators of something in the real world, or subjective truth (look here). This for me beautifully simplified what language is, rather than the over-intellectualising of the subject by most academics like Chomsky and even Wittgenstein himself, whose later work acknowledged this. Saussure is famous for never writing anything down so the only knowledge we have of his work comes from former students of his, who did take notes of what he said.

By W. Terrence Gordon, Abbe Lubell (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Saussure For Beginners as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A concise, accessible introduction to the great linguist who shaped the study of language for the 20th century, Saussure for Beginners puts the challenging ideas of Ferdinand de Saussure (1857-1913) into clear and illuminating terms, focusing on the unifying principles of his teachings and showing how his thoughts on linguistics migrated to anthropology.

Ferdinand de Saussure’s work is so powerful that it not only redefined modern linguistics, it also opened our minds to new ways of approaching anthropology, literary criticism, and psychoanalysis. Saussure felt that 19th century linguistics avoided hard questions about what language is and how it works. By…

Re-Imagining Black Women

By Nikol G. Alexander-Floyd,

Book cover of Re-Imagining Black Women: A Critique of Post-Feminist and Post-Racial Melodrama in Culture and Politics

Leela Fernandes Author Of Governing Water in India: Inequality, Reform, and the State

From the list on to understand inequality in a world in crisis.

Who am I?

I have spent close to thirty years researching and teaching about questions of inequality and change. Most of my focus has been on the Global South, with a particular focus on India. I've written about intersecting class, gender, and caste inequalities. I've pursued this research agenda through extensive field research on labor politics, democratization, and the politics of economic reform in India. My interest stems from my background. I am originally from India and have lived and travelled extensively in the Middle East and Southeast Asia. I'm an author, public speaker, and consultant and have been a professor for three decades at the University of Michigan, Rutgers University, The University of Washington, and Oberlin College.

Leela's book list on to understand inequality in a world in crisis

Discover why each book is one of Leela's favorite books.

Why did Leela love this book?

This is a brilliant book about race, gender, and politics in the United States. While there is a lot of work on racial inequality this book stands out in its focus on the ways in which culture shapes our politics and responses to inequality. It does so by centering Black women. It is also very timely and analyzes the way in which public figures like Michelle Obama and Condoleeza Rice have shaped the American political imagination.  

By Nikol G. Alexander-Floyd,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Re-Imagining Black Women as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A wide-ranging Black feminist interrogation, reaching from the #MeToo movement to the legacy of gender-based violence against Black women
From Michelle Obama to Condoleezza Rice, Black women are uniquely scrutinized in the public eye. In Re-Imagining Black Women, Nikol G. Alexander-Floyd explores how Black women-and Blackness more broadly-are understood in our political imagination and often become the subjects of public controversy.
Drawing on politics, popular culture, psychoanalysis, and more, Alexander-Floyd examines our conflicting ideas, opinions, and narratives about Black women, showing how they…

The Joyce Girl

By Annabel Abbs,

Book cover of The Joyce Girl

Maggie Humm Author Of Talland House

From the list on re-visioning history.

Who am I?

Like many readers, I am fascinated by strong creative women in the past and how their lives can inspire women today. As an academic, before my Creative Writing Diploma and transformation to a creative writer, I taught historical novels of many kinds. I now enjoy devising fascinating women whose lives have significant importance for today’s issues. To talk about my favourite historical figure Virginia Woolf, I have had invitations from galleries and universities around the world, including several in the US and Europe, as well as Brazil, Egypt, Israel, Mexico, and Norway. France Culture and Arte TV, and Turkey TRT Television also featured my writing. 

Maggie's book list on re-visioning history

Discover why each book is one of Maggie's favorite books.

Why did Maggie love this book?

1928 Avant-garde Paris is buzzing with the latest ideas in art, music, literature, and dance. Lucia, the talented and ambitious daughter of James Joyce, is making her name as a dancer, training with some of the world's most gifted performers. When a young Samuel Beckett comes to work for her father, she's captivated by his quiet intensity and falls passionately in love. Her unrequited obsession leads to treatment by Carl Jung and finally an asylum. My books aim to bring alive women artists hidden from history, and The Joyce Girl creates a powerful portrait of an artist unable to fulfill her talent.

By Annabel Abbs,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Joyce Girl as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Abbs has found a gripping and little-known story at the heart of one of the 20th century’s most astonishing creative moments, researched it deeply, and brought the extraordinary Joyce family and their circle in 1920s Paris to richly-imagined life.”—Emma Darwin, bestselling author of A Secret Alchemy and The Mathematics of Love

For readers who adored novels like The Paris Wife, Z, and Loving Frank, comes Annabel Abbs highly praised debut novel, where she spins the story of James Joyce’s fascinating, and tragic, daughter, Lucia. 

“When she reaches her full capacity for rhythmic dancing, James Joyce may yet be known as…