Theodor Lipps

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Lipps, Theodor


Born July 28, 1851, in Wallhalben in the Rhineland-Palatinate; died Oct. 17, 1914, in Munich. German idealist philosopher, psychologist, and aesthetician.

Lipps was a professor at the universities of Bonn (1884), Breslau (1890), and Munich (1894). He founded the Psychological Institute in Munich. Along with Wundt and Ebbinghaus, Lipps systematized German psychology of the late 19th century. Taking the concept of immediate psychological experience as the starting point for his philosophy, Lipps saw in psychology the foundation for all branches of philosophy: logic, ethics, and aesthetics. Under the influence of Husserl’s phenomenology, he later tried to overcome psychologism. Lipps developed a psychology of art with empathy (Einfühlung) as the central concept.


Komik und Humor. Leipzig, 1898.
Ästhetik, vols. 1–2. Leipzig, 1903–06.
Leitfaden der Psychologie, 3rd ed. Leipzig, 1909.
Vom Fühlen, Wollen und Denken, 3rd ed. Leipzig, 1926.
Psychologische Untersuchungen, vols. 1–2. Leipzig, 1907–12.
In Russian translation:
Osnovy logiki. St. Petersburg, 1902.
Samosoznanie. St. Petersburg, 1903.
Osnovnye voprosy etiki. St. Petersburg [1905].
Rukovodstvo k psikhologii. St. Petersburg, 1907.
References in periodicals archive ?
En 1907, Theodor Lipps, admirado por Freud, da un rango de verosimilitud a ese sentimiento: no es una simple "asociacion" con el otro, o la aneja compasion cristiana, sino la forma "originaria" en la que creamos la naturaleza de la identificacion.
Se trata, pues, de un trabajo que deberia ser complementado con la referencia a otras personalidades como Wilhem Wund o Sigmund Freud y, mas recientemente, a las de Theodor Lipps, Kurt Lewin, Carl Jung, Carl Stumpf, Wilhem Ostwald o Kurt Koffka.
After developing a theoretical model for the German reception of blackface, I discuss the function of blackness and blackface within comic theory, in particular the writings of Theodor Lipps and Emile Kraepelin.
Beyond these two monumental works, other writers such as Kuno Fischer, Theodor Vischer, Emile Kraepelin, and Theodor Lipps engaged with comedy and humor as part of more general theories of the aesthetic and aesthetic experience.
The issue boils down to the quality of "empathy," in Theodor Lipps's sense: For the aesthetician, the source of "aesthetic enjoyment" is a "critical participation in the fullness of the World-Me continuum." Do these paintings offer sensations more radically immediate and intimate than those of the Intimist Vuillard, or, for that matter, any hitherto experienced aesthetic painting?
He discusses the origins of Pirandello's 'umorismo', clarifying its Romantic roots, citing Jean Paul Richter as a German pre-Freudian source of inspiration and discussing Theodor Lipps's contribution (and Pirandello's response to Lipps's work in L'umorismo).
Were they converted - perhaps (like Theodor Lipps) by a revolt of their own students - to Husserl's point of view?
And whilst he recognizes that Theodor Lipps was an important figure in Freud's intellectual development, Lehrer does not examine Lipps's contribution to psychoanalysis in any detail.