Paul Parin

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Paul Parin

Paul Parin (born September 20, 1916 - not in Polzela / Austria-Hungary , in today's Slovenia , † May 18, 2009 in Zurich ) was a psychoanalyst , ethnologist and writer .


Paul Parin, possibly born in Graz, grew up as the son of a Swiss abroad in an upper -class, Jewish-assimilated family on his parents' estate in Polzela (in the district of Založe , formerly also called Neukloster ). He studied medicine at the universities in Graz and Zagreb . Parin received his doctorate in 1943. This was followed by training as a surgeon until 1946. During this time Parin worked as a surgeon for the Yugoslav partisans in 1944/45 . Parin then completed training as a neurologist and psychoanalyst in Switzerland . Since 1952 Paul Parin had his own practice as a psychoanalyst in Zurich.

Between 1955 and 1971 Paul Parin undertook six research trips to West Africa . Together with his wife Goldy Parin-Matthèy - the couple married in 1955 - and Fritz Morgenthaler , he developed the field of ethnopsychoanalysis : Since the mid-1960s, the research authors became internationally known for their successful attempt to apply the methods of psychoanalysis in ethnology. With the psychoanalytically grounded field research study entitled The Whites Think Too Much (1963) they showed that the psychoanalysis developed and applied in Europe and North America was also suitable for working with members of other origins.

From 1972 to 1979 Paul Parin was a psychotherapist at the Psychiatric University Clinic in Zurich . He is one of the prominent representatives of a - in the sense of radical Enlightenment - politically engaged psychoanalysis. He recorded the memories of his research trips in several books; in addition there were a number of volumes of short stories in his last lifetime.

Paul Parin found his final resting place in the Rehalp cemetery .

Since 2018, the 19-volume edition of Parins has been published by Mandelbaum Verlag in Vienna .




  • with Goldy Parin-Matthèy and Fritz Morgenthaler : The whites think too much. Psychoanalytic investigations among the Dogon in West Africa. Atlantis, Zurich 1963 and EVA, Hamburg 2006, ISBN 3-434-50602-0 .
  • with Goldy Parin-Matthèy and Fritz Morgenthaler: Fear your neighbor as yourself. Psychoanalysis and society based on the model of Agni in West Africa. Suhrkamp, ​​Frankfurt am Main 1971 and Psychosocial, Gießen 2006, ISBN 3-89806-462-X .
  • The contradiction in the subject. Ethnopsychoanalytical Studies . Syndikat, Frankfurt am Main 1978, ISBN 3-8108-0080-5 , and EVA, Hamburg 1992, ISBN 3-434-46011-X .
  • Unmistakable signs of change. Years in Slovenia . Kindler, Munich 1980 and EVA, Hamburg 1992, ISBN 3-434-50012-X .
  • Too many devils in the country. Notes from a traveler to Africa . Syndikat, Frankfurt am Main 1985 and Drava, Klagenfurt 2008, ISBN 978-3-85435-545-8 .
  • with Goldy Parin-Matthèy: Subject in contradiction. Syndicate, Frankfurt am Main 1986 and Psychosocial, Gießen 2000, ISBN 3-89806-033-0 .
  • It's war and we're going. With the Yugoslav partisans . Rowohlt, Berlin 1991 and EVA, Hamburg 1997, ISBN 3-434-50417-6 .
  • Psychoanalysis, ethnopsychoanalysis, cultural criticism . Paul Parin's writings on CD-ROM, ed. v. Johannes Reichmayr. Psychosocial, Giessen 2004, ISBN 3-89806-211-2 .


Work edition

  • The hunt. License for Sex and Crime. Stories and essays (work edition Volume 1). Mandelbaum, Vienna 2018, ISBN 978-3-85476-581-3 .
  • Unmistakable signs of change. Years in Slovenia (Work Edition Volume 2). Mandelbaum, Vienna 2019, ISBN 978-3-85476-836-4 .
  • Network of relationships . Correspondence v. Goldy and August Matthèy, Fritz Morgenthaler and Paul Parin. (Work edition volume 3). Mandelbaum, Vienna 2019, ISBN 978-3-85476-835-7 .
  • Too many devils in the country. Notes of a traveler to Africa (work edition volume 4). Mandelbaum, Vienna 2019, ISBN 978-3-85476-853-1 .



  • Ursula Rütten: In rough terrain. Paul Parin - Narrated Life. EVA, Hamburg 1996, ISBN 3-434-50400-1 .
  • Emilio Modena (Ed.): Passions. Paul Parin on his 90th birthday. Friday, Berlin 2007, ISBN 3-936252-13-0 .
  • Roland Kaufhold : "A moral anarchist". Memories of the psychoanalyst, writer and skeptical global citizen Paul Parin (09/20/1916– 05/18/2009). In: Psychosocial . Vol. 32 (2009), No. 117, pp. 117-126.
  • Dieter M. Adler: Paul Parin. “We were too young to spend the rest of our lives behind the couch” (= encounters with psychoanalysts. Vol. 1)., Bonn 2007, ISBN 978-3-00-023881-9 (DVD, 97 minutes).
  • Roland Kaufhold: “You can only get to know someone like that if you have experienced at least one of his adventures.” On the 100th birthday of Paul Parin (09/20/1916– 05/18/2009). In: child analysis. Vol. 24 (2016), H. 1, pp. 76-86.
  • David Signer : Constructions of the Unconscious. The Agni in West Africa from an ethno-psychoanalytical and post-structuralist perspective . Vienna: Passagen Verlag (dissertation 1994). (Critical examination of Paul Parin.)

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Typescript .
  2. Michael Reichmayr: Paul Parin - physician, psychoanalyst and co-founder of ethnopsychoanalysis . Biography of the month on the homepage of the Austrian Biographical Lexicon (September 2016) .
  3. See also Andreas Mettenleiter : Testimonials, memories, diaries and letters from German-speaking doctors. Supplements and supplements III (I – Z). In: Würzburg medical history reports. Volume 22, 2003, pp. 269–305, here: p. 283 ("Neukloster (Plezla) / Slovenia").
  4. Psychoanalytical Seminar Zurich (Ed.): Sexuality . Syndikat / EVA, Frankfurt am Main 1986, p. 205.
  5. .