Born Charlotte Malachowski in Berlin, Germany on December 20, 1893. Charlotte’s mother, Rose was a musician while her father, Walter was an architect. Charlotte married Karl Buhler in 1916 and had her first daughter in 1917. She also had a son in 1919. Buhler received her Bachelor’s (BS) in 1915 from the University of Berlin and her PhD in 1918 from the University of Munich. Her husband Karl was put in prison for his anti-Nazi opinion but Charlotte was able to get him released and they moved to the United States. She earned American citizenship in 1945. After her great contributions to the humanistic movement and her research in life-span development psychology Charlotte Buhler returned to Germany where she died February 3, 1974 in Stuttgart, West Germany.
Buhler’s research focused on adolescents and infants. She used diaries to study adolescents and discovered that infants are intentional and curious even in their first months. Buhler developed tests to assess child development that are still in practice today. While in the U.S. Buhler set up a child guidance clinic in Worcester, Mass. She later worked as a clinical psychologist. Her theoretical and clinical work corresponded well with Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow. She later worked with Maslow and Rogers as a primary contributor to the humanistic movement. In 1970 Buhler presided over the First International Conference on Humanistic Psychology in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Buhler’s theory of life goals is similar to the well known Maslow’s Hierarchy,“1. The tendency to strive for personal satisfactions in sex, love, and ego recognition
2. The tendency toward self-limiting adaptation for the purpose of fitting in, belonging, and gaining security
3. The tendency toward self-expression and creative accomplishments
4. The tendency toward integration or order-upholding”
By Charlotte Cray