Considered to be one of the most gifted psychotherapists of his time, Otto Rank investigated matters "beyond psychology" and became known for his energy, intellectual curiosity, and self-awareness. Born in Vienna, Rank had a very deprived childhood. Despite troubled feelings and suicidal thoughts during his adolescence, he read a great deal and became interested in the psychology of creativity. He first formulated his theories about art and neuroses in the series of remarkable daybooks (1903--1904). In 1912 he helped to found Imago, the first European journal of psychoanalysis. In the years of his association with Sigmund Freud from 1905 to 1925, he served as secretary to the psychoanalytic movement, and it was generally assumed that Freud regarded him as his successor. Rank, however, eventually came to see the roots of all psychoneuroses in the experience of birth. This theory he described in The Trauma of Birth (1924). Such differences caused his break with Freud in the middle 1920s, after which he lived in Paris and then New York.