Melanie Klein (1882–1960) is one of the founding figures of psychoanalysis. Building on the discoveries of Sigmund Freud, she recognised the centrality of the infant’s first relationships with its primary caregivers and, most significantly, she elucidated the early mental processes that build up a person’s inner emotional world. A pioneering child analyst from Central Europe, she was a controversial and powerful member of the British Psychoanalytical Society for 30 years and her influence is now worldwide.
Explore Melanie Klein's life by clicking on the boxes below.
Many of the images on this site are reproduced courtesy of the Wellcome Collection, which holds the Melanie Klein archive. The archive is freely available online and can also be accessed at the Wellcome Library on request - visit our archive page for more information.
You can also find out more about Klein's life, including films, audio recordings, written recollections and her autobiographical writings, in the Audio and video and Downloads sections of this website.