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SNAPSHOTS OF A LIFE
on May 20, 2001
Viktor Frankl has presented us with snap shots of the key events in his life. These recollections were never intended for publication but through the encouragement of his publisher this slim volume was made available for readers. Thus begins our journey in looking at the life of the founder of Logotherapy and the author of "Man's Search for Meaning."
Frankl's life is filled with interesting portraits. We learn of his mother's patrician background and the fact that she was descended from a family of prominent rabbis. His father was a struggling student and was director of the government's Ministry of Social Services.
We get to see this inquisitive young man as he is impacted by Freud, Hirschmann, Schilder and Adler as he begins to step int the field of psychoanalysis. Through his philosophical questionings and debates with these giants in the field we find Frankl developing his own methodology. March of 1938 became a turing point for the young man as his country is invaded by the Nazis and he is placed in a concentration camp. From that experience wee see a new personality arising who meets the psychological, emotional and spiritual tensions in his life with utmost grace.We see a man who has the opportunity to leave Austria and avoid the concentration camps but he elects to stay and care for his parents.
Unfortunately this memoir is not a full autobiography of Frankl. You receive sketches of his life and end up wanting more. Read in conjunction with Man's Search for Meaning, the reader can gain further insight on this great personality. I believe this book serves as a supplemental text for the author's Man Search for Meaning." Hopefully a full scale biographical work will come out on Frankl. Until then, this slender volume will whet your appetite to learn more about this great man.