Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
Brunswick, Ruth Jane Mack, 1897-1946
Ruth Jane Mack Brunswick (1897-1946), M1922, was a psychoanalyst and student of Sigmund Freud. Her work significantly expanded and explored Freud's theories.
Brunswick was born on February 17, 1897 in Chicago, Illinois. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1918, but attended the Tufts School of Medicine after being rejected from Harvard's medical school because she was a woman. Following graduation she travelled to Vienna to study with Freud, becoming a member of the small circle of students instructed by him.
By 1925 she was practicing psychoanalysis herself and had become an instructor at the Psychoanalytic Institue in Vienna. She became an editor of the Psychoanalytic Quarterly in 1932 and published one of her most notable early papers on her continuing treatment of the Wolf Man, one of Freud's most famous cases. She was widely respected in the field as a brilliant, thorough, and effective clinician.
She married in 1928 American composer Mark Brunswick. The couple left Nazi-occupied Vienna in 1938 to settle in New York City, where she joined the New York Psychoanalytic Society and taught courses on the subject, while maintaining a private practice. Though Brunswick had comparatively few professional publications, they are considered to be of classic quality and to contribute significantly to the full development of Freudian theory, particularly in the areas of childhood trauma and parental attachment.
Brunswick died in New York City on January 24, 1946.