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Lewin, Kurt (1890–1947)

  1. Ralph W. Lundin

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0505

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Lundin, R. W. 2010. Lewin, Kurt (1890–1947). Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1.

Author Information

  1. Wheaton, IL

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Kurt Lewin received his PhD from the University of Berlin in 1914. Among his early associates were two of the Gestalt psychologists, Max Wertheimer and Wolfgang Köhler. Some psychologists consider Lewin's system to be an extension of the Gestalt movement. Lewin considered his system to be topological and vectoral psychology. He took the terms “topology” and “vector” from mathematics. Topology investigates the properties of space. But topology was not enough: he needed a concept of force or vector.


  • field theory;
  • life space;
  • motivation;
  • social psychology;
  • topological psychology