photo by Bettina von Zwehl

photo by Bettina von Zwehl




Stephen Grosz is a practicing psychoanalyst—he has worked with patients for more than twenty-five years. Born in America, educated at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Oxford University, he teaches at the Institute of Psychoanalysis and in the Psychoanalysis Unit at University College London. He lives in London.

His stories have appeared in the Financial Times Weekend Magazine and Granta.

A Sunday Times bestseller, The Examined Life is his first book.





Karl Ove Knausgaard and Stephen Grosz in conversation, May 2014

BBC Radio 3: Private Passions with Michael Berkeley

In conversation with Michael Berkeley, Stephen Grosz tells his own story: his childhood in Chicago, the son of immigrants who ran a grocery store; student days in radical Berkeley; and now, settled in Britain, how he’s facing the challenges of fatherhood and ageing. Music has played an important part right from the beginning, and Grosz admits that his choice of music is very psychologically revealing.


scotBBC Radio Scotland: Sunday Morning with Richard Holloway

Richard talks to psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz about his new book.. February 2014.


martin_rachel_vert-d30c8b4998e51e3c3e93543a7c88a17e63ef236e-s3-c85NPR: Weekend Edition with Rachel Martin

Dreams. How we describe our dreams can be more important than what they contain. Host Rachel Martin talks with Stephen Grosz, a practicing psychoanalyst and the author of The Examined Life: How We Lose and Find Ourselves. Grosz uses dreams to better understand his patients’ motivations and feelings.

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Profiles & Interviews

The Stories We Tell Ourselves

(by Mandy Van Deven • In the Fray • September 9, 2013)

itf_logo_290pxI didn’t expect a collection of stories about the inner struggles of psychoanalysis patients to be so much like a detective novel. Yet, in The Examined Life parallels abound.

Clues are uncovered slowly in each chapter and a mystery unfolds. Hidden motivations are unearthed by identifying the meaningful in the mundane. The skillful narrator walks the reader through his ruminative process of making sense of the clues. A truth is revealed that appears to have been there are along.

Psychoanalyst Stephen Grosz has penchant for storytelling. He knows when to showcase his professional proficiencies and when to let the tale tell itself. The truth, after all, is somewhere in-between.

What was your motivation in embarking on this project?

I am sixty. I have a ten-year-old daughter and a seven-year-old son. My father had two heart attacks by the time he was my age, and my mother died when she was sixty-four. If I’m not here when my children are teenagers or young adults, I thought about what I want them to know.

The thirty-one stories in The Examined Life address what I think of as some of life’s biggest problems — problems we all face. More than that, I wanted to portray a way of thinking, a disposition towards oneself and the world that might be useful to them and others. Also, psychoanalysis requires time and money, and many people won’t be able to afford it. I wanted to set down some of the important things I’ve learned in a way that may be helpful to those who are unable to have psychoanalysis or therapy. (read more)

For more interviews & profiles, click here