Man's Search for Meaning Questions and Answers
by Viktor Emil Frankl

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What does Frankl mean by the term "psychohygiene" in Man's Search for Meaning? How does it affect a concentration camp prisoner’s experience and outcome? Describe examples in which Frankl helped his fellow prisoners via psychohygienic methods. Then describe examples in which others helped Frankl through similar methods.

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Frankl coins the term “psychohygiene” to refer to the mental health of detainees in the camps. The term is designed to contradict the term “psychopathology,” which refers to mental illness or instability. His big argument was that physical survival of the torture of these camps was not enough, and that it was important for detainees to ensure that left the camp as mental survivors.

In terms of how this affected a prisoner’s experience and outcome, maintaining one’s psychohygiene meant not only that prisoners would have tools within to help them fight the urge to commit suicide or simply allow the guards to beat them to death. It also meant that at the end of the war, when prisoners were released from these hell-on-earth camps, they had a far better chance of returning to some semblance of a normal life.

The chief method that Frankl puts forward for maintaining one’s psychohygiene was having something to live for or a higher purpose to pursue. For Frankl, this was the idea...

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