[Here the world is burning : The 70th anniversary of the death of neurologist Dr. John Rittmeister].

Der Nervenarzt

PubMedID: 24005998

Teller Ch. [Here the world is burning : The 70th anniversary of the death of neurologist Dr. John Rittmeister]. Nervenarzt. 2013;84(9):1056-63.
John Rittmeister was a German neurologist (1898-1943) who was executed in Berlin-Plötzensee because of his decision to support organized political resistance against National Socialism. He grew up in a socially and materially privileged environment and following his final school examinations (Abitur) in 1917 he volunteered for war duties despite limited physical capabilities and was posted as a private to the war front in the Italian Alps and the Champagne district. While he was there he made his first social experiences outside his original surroundings. After the war he studied medicine and following the final state examinations and graduation he progressed to specialist training as a neurologist in Munich. At this time he came into contact with C.G. Jung. During a study period in London in 1929 he worked for several weeks as a resident at Toynbee Hall, a university institution in Whitechapel and experienced the methods of community work used there which were known under the term settlement movement. He continued his specialist activities in the neurological clinic in Zürich founded by C. von Monakow. Following the experiences in London he broke up with C.G. Jung and turned to Sigmund Freud and therapeutic analysis under Gustav Bally. In 1937 he returned to Germany. In 1939 he became director of the Policlinic of the German Institute for Psychological Research and Psychotherapy. Probably also due to his own war experiences in 1941/1942 he participated in the drafting of a flyer for the Schulze-Boysen/Harnack group against the war and after 8 months in prison he was executed in Berlin on 13 May 1943.