Howard M. Feinstein

HF headshot by daughter-in-law lightened & cropped
Howard Marvin Feinstein was born at home in the Bronx in 1929. He attended the Bronx High School of Science and Cornell University as a College Scholar studying a wide range of subjects with an emphasis on history. He entered Cornell Medical College, graduated in 1955 and married in 1956. He uncovered his interest in psychiatry, began a year of residency at the New York Hospital Westchester Division and spent two years in the Army under the “Berry Plan” as a Captain in the Medical Corps at Fort Sill, Oklahoma before two stimulating years of residency at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center at Harvard.

After moving back to Ithaca in 1961 to practice psychiatry, Feinstein gradually extended beyond analytically informed psychotherapy, incorporating psychopharmacology and often involving the patient’s family. He noticed that many patients struggled with ambivalence about work choices and was introduced to the James family through discussions with a friend, Cushing Strout, a professor of American intellectual history.

Feinstein began formal graduate studies at Cornell while continuing to practice and raising three sons. In 1967-68, he studied psychobiography with Erik Erikson and read hundreds of James family letters at Harvard’s Houghton collection. In 1976-77, he explored the resources of the British Museum Library as a Visiting Fellow at the Tavistock Clinic. Returning to Ithaca, he completed his Ph.D. in 1977 with a thesis entitled “Fathers and Sons: Work and the Inner World of William James, An Inter-Generational Inquiry” which evolved into
Becoming William James, published by Cornell University Press in 1984.

Feinstein was an Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Cornell University for over 15 years and is a Lifetime Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

Click on the cover for details about the eBook:

Becoming William James eBook cover