Mary Henle (1913-2007)

Mary HenleMary Henle has died at the age of 94. Dr. Henle was the sixth president of the History of Psychology Division of the APA (1971-72), and was a prominent historian of psychology and Gestalt psychologist.

Michael Wertheimer wrote of her:

Mary Henle, Gestalt psychologist, experimental psychologist, historian of psychology, and incisive critic of psychological theory, has been publishing influential works steadily for a period of half a century. ….She edited several major books on Gestalt thought and wrote many critical articles that helped to dispel misconceptions about Gestalt psychology. Her contributions to the history of psychology transcend the Gestalt approach; she coedited a major volume on the history of psychology, published an anthology of the most important papers of the Gestalt psychologist Wolfgang K√∂hler, and was instrumental in the posthumous publication of a widely used text on the history of psychology by a colleague, Robert B. MacLeod. Her 1986 book, 1879 and All That, a selective collection of her essays on the history of psychology and on psychological theories, reprints some of her best works and has received highly favorable reviews. An incisive thinker and precise and elegant writer, she set a standard in scholarly work for her students and colleagues–and herself–that is rarely met by others in the field. Her career has served as an inspiring example to many colleagues, male and female alike. In the year of her retirement, the New School for Social Research, where Henle had spent most of her career, awarded her the L.H.D. degree in recognition of her outstanding achievements. (In A. N. O’Connell & N. F. Russo (Eds.) (1990). Women in Psychology: A Bio-Bibliographic Sourcebook, p. 161. Greenwood.)

About Christopher Green

Professor of Psychology at York University (Toronto). Former editor of the Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences. Creator of the "Classics in the History of Psychology" website and of the "This Week in the History of Psychology" podcast series.