Psychobiography and Autobiographies

While in psychobiographies researchers focus on the life of another person by using and applying formal psychological theories, autobiographies are the documentation of an individual’s life, a self-expression of the life and/or a section of a person’s life that is written by the individual him/herself (Eakin, 1992). Autobiographies are used in studying lives (Kovary, 2011; Kramp, 2012) and are sometimes defined as part of life history research (Bakery Ba & LeFrancois, 2011).

Psychobiographical research might draw from autobiographical writings and publication to gain data for analysis and interpretation (Elms, 1994; Ferguson Smith, 2014). Autobiographies are viewed as first-person documents (Allport, 1961), because they do provide first-hand insights into a person’s life from his/her own perspective.

This study is a psychobiography on the life and selected works of Paulo Coelho. It does use autobiographic accounts and novels to analyse the life and works of Paulo Coelho from a psychobiographic perspective.

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