Helen Block Lewis was born in Manhattan, New York on August 22, 1913. In 1932, Lewis graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Barnard College. In 1936 she completed her PhD in psychology from Columbia University. Before graduation, she became a faculty member in social psychology at Brooklyn College, remaining there until 1942. From 1937-1938, Lewis studied under Kurt Goldstein at the Neurophysiology Clinic at Montefiore Hospital in Pittsburgh. From 1944-1947, she did clinical practice with adults at Mount Sinai Hospital. From 1945-1949, she worked with children at the Caroline Zachary Institute. Lewis ' research on shame, guilt, and gender within psychoanalysis led to her publishing over 50 articles and the notable books: Freud and Modern Psychology (1981), Shame and Guilt in Neurosis (1971), Psychic War in Men and Women (1976), The Role of Shame in Symptom Formation (1987), as well as many chapters in the edited Sex and the Super Ego (1987). Lewis passed away in Cambridge, Massachusetts on January 18, 1987.
From the guide to the Helen Block Lewis papers, 1972-1986, (Center for the History of Psychology)