The Lindbergh Kidnapping: mobs, mass psychology and myth

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Genotype, Feb 28, 2011 - Psychology

The Lindbergh kidnapping examines the incredible American hysteria over the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby. This drama represented one of the biggest newspaper stories of the twentieth century. The lynch mob demanded blood and got it with the execution of the innocent Bruno Richard Hauptmann.  This drama that unfolded was, at bottom, fully psychological as reality became a pawn to the whimsies of the collective psyche.   


“A fascinating piece of psychological analysis that reads like an Agatha Christie novel.  I couldn’t put it down!”

—Marvin Forrest, Ph.D., psychotherapist, 

Santa Barbara

“Dr. Kroth has provided a compelling analysis of the Lindbergh story that renders it in a completely new light. Prepare to have what you thought you knew thoroughly challenged!”

—Jeff Kisling, Ph.D., psychotherapist, Palo Alt


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“A fascinating piece of psychological analysis that reads like an
Agatha Christie novel. I couldn’t put it down!
—Marvin Forrest, Ph.D., psychotherapist,
Santa Barbara
A remarkably astute piece of collective psychology. It renders the
Lindbergh story in a completely new light. And the ending
of this book just knocks your socks off!
—Jeff Kisling, Ph.D.,
Palo Alto


A hero is born
Infanticide and retribution 45
exile and infamy 95
The force 121
The meaning of the myth 145

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About the author (2011)

 Jerry Kroth, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor Emeritus in the graduate counseling psychology program at Santa Clara University in California.  His academic assignments have included courses in psychotherapy and personality theory, dreamwork, and research methods.  Dr. Kroth has an abiding therapeutic interest in working with dreams, personal oracles, and the applications of dream theory to psychohistory and collective psychology.  Jerry has been a member of the International Psychohistorical Association since 1983.


Dr. Kroth’s twelve prior books were in the areas of counseling psychology, child sexual abuse, learning disorders, metapsychology, transpersonal psychology, and research methodology. In addition he has written and presented over seventy-five papers on anxiety, child development, mass psychology, synchronicity, experimental studies of the dream process, the psychology of propaganda and collective psychology. Professor Kroth lives in California with his wife and two daughters. He maintains a website:

His most recent books are listed below:

Conspiracy in Camelot: the complete history of the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy 

Psyche’s Exile: an empirical odyssey in search of the soul

Duped! Delusion, denial, and the end of the American dream 

The Lindbergh kidnapping: mobs, mass psychology, and myth

Aliens and Man: a synopsis of facts and beliefs. 

Omens and Oracles: collective psychology in the nuclear age

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