Emil Kraepelin

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Kraepelin, Emil

(krĕpəlēn`), 1856–1926, German psychiatrist, educated at Würzburg (M.D., 1878). He also studied under Wilhelm WundtWundt, Wilhelm Max
, 1832–1920, German physiologist and psychologist. From 1875 he taught at Leipzig, where he founded the first laboratory for experimental psychology.
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 in Leipzig, and was appointed professor of psychiatry at the Univ. of Dorpat, Heidelberg (1891) and Münich (1903), where he also directed a clinic. Kraepelin authored nine editions of a textbook which classified mental diseases according to their cause, symptomatology, course, final stage, and pathological anatomical findings, producing a system of classification which has relevance even today. He established the clinical pictures of dementia praecox (now known as schizophreniaschizophrenia
, group of severe mental disorders characterized by reality distortions resulting in unusual thought patterns and behaviors. Because there is often little or no logical relationship between the thoughts and feelings of a person with schizophrenia, the disorder has
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) in 1893, and of manic-depressive psychosis (now known as bipolar disorderbipolar disorder,
formerly manic-depressive disorder
or manic-depression,
severe mental disorder involving manic episodes that are usually accompanied by episodes of depression.
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) in 1899, after analyzing thousands of case histories. Kraepelin was concerned only with diagnostic classification, and did not accept the theory of unconscious mental activity postulated by psychoanalysts. His classification of mental disorders served as the foundation for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) and the International Classification of Diseases (ICD), the standard reference text used by psychiatrists today. His major work is his Textbook of Psychiatry (9th ed. 1927).

Kraepelin, Emil


Born Feb. 15, 1856, in Neustrelitz, Mecklenburg; died Oct. 7, 1926, in Munich. German psychiatrist. Professor of psychiatry at the universities of Dorpat (now Tartu; from 1886), Heidelberg (from 1891), and Munich (from 1903).

In 1922, Kraepelin left his professorship, to work at the Munich Research Institute for Psychiatry, which he had founded in 1917. His principal works were devoted to elaborating the clinical practice of mental diseases and their classification, which was constructed by Kraepelin according to the nosological principle. He believed that single causes entailed single consequences, that is, symptoms; Kraepelin attributed great significance to their course and outcome in delimiting nosological forms. One of Kraepelin’s major achievements was the division of endogenic psychoses according to their outcome into two categories: dementia praecox (schizophrenia) and manic-depressive psychosis.

His idealistic approach to the causes of mental disease led Kraepelin to assign too much significance to heredity and constitutional factors; he understood cause and effect as something permanent and immutable and did not take into account such factors as the body’s reactive features and the effect of the environment. Nevertheless, Kraepelin’s nosology remains the basis of clinical psychiatry. He created an important psychiatric school. Kraepelin’s Textbook of Psychiatry, upon which many generations of psychiatrists were reared, went through eight editions (from 1883).


Uchebnik psikhiatrii, vols. [l]-2. Moscow, 1910–12.
Vvedenie v psikhiatricheskuiu kliniku, 4th ed. Moscow-Petrograd, 1923. REFERENCE Kannabikh, lu. Istoriia psikhiatrii. [Moscow], 1929.


References in periodicals archive ?
Emil Kraepelin, Dementia Praecox and Paraphrenia (Bristol, England, 2002), p.
This historic site is where Emil Kraepelin, considered to be the father of modern psychiatry, conducted the body of his research.
Before the hearing, the society proposed three selections -- schizophrenia, the Kraepelin-Bleuler syndrome, based on the names of Bleuler and German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin, who studied the disease, and togo shiccho sho.
In order to recover from this traumatic experience, Jones went to Munich and enrolled in postgraduate studies in clinical psychiatry with Emil Kraepelin.
No less an authority than Emil Kraepelin described a manic predisposition in this way: "The slightest forms of the disorder lead us to certain personal predispositions still in the domain of the normal.
More than 70 years ago, German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin separated schizophrenia (which he called dementia praecox) into two maladies roughly comparable to psychosis and primary deficit symptoms, notes Carpenter in a commentary accompanying the Chestnut Lodge study.