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Fritz Redl Papers

Identifier: WSP000660

Scope and Content

This collection consists of Dr. Redl’s work with troubled youth and his involvement in developing the Life Space Interview, a classroom counseling approach used in managing behavior with students. This includes publications in Redl's field, correspondence with colleagues and camp members, and field research notes. There are also a number of photographs and letters that document Dr. Redl’s personal life and his classroom regiments.


  • 1930 - 1989


Language of Materials

Material mostly in English. Some material is in Austrian.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


Dr. Fritz Redl was a professor at Wayne State University’s School of Social Work, where he developed the “Life Space Interview,” a means of crisis intervention in the life of a troubled child. Dr. Redl was born in Austria, on September 9, 1902. He earned his doctorate at the University of Vienna. Redl came to the United States in 1936 for a two-year study on adolescence. Noting the rising turbulence in Europe, and Hitler’s annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany in 1938, he subsequently decided to stay in the U.S. Dr. Redl worked at several educational institutions, including the University of Michigan and University of Chicago, before landing at Wayne State University, where he developed the LSI. While working at Wayne State, Dr. Redl established the Pioneer House in 1946, which served as a home for delinquent boys. Dr. Redl was also elected president of the American Orthopsychiatric Association in 1962. He retired from professional life in 1973. Fritz Redl died in 1988.


7 Linear Feet (6 SB, 1 OS)


Fritz Redl was a professor at Wayne State University's School of Social Work. His papers document his research in human behavior and psychoanalytical work on delinquent youth, as well as moments of his personal life and his classroom habits.


Arranged into 1 series, with folders arranged alphabetically. Box 5 focuses on Redl’s publishing career, while Box 6 contains audio-visual materials.


“Materials were deposited at the Walter P. Reuther Library by Helen Redl in 1989."

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Mark Prindiville on March 23, 2017.
Guide to the Fritz Redl Papers
Processed by Mark Prindville.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA