Marberg, Dr. Hilde
Immigrated to Palestine 1934
Died in Tel Aviv 1989
Marberg Hilde (Mathilde), 1911-1989
Dr. Hilde (Mathilde) Marberg (nee Nussbaum) was a leading pediatric psychiatrist in Israel.
She was born in Freiburg (Germany), and grew up in Hanau-am-Main in a prominent Jewish family. She belonged to the socialist zionist youth movement, and began medical studies in Germany. In 1934, after the Nazis came to power, she had to break her studies, and she and her family, her parents and brother, immigrated to Palestine. To her relief, she was able to complete her studies and internship in Switzerland in 1936. After graduating, she hurried to return home to care for her father, who fell ill and died. Dealing with the return to the Land of Israel was difficult also because due to the growing number of physicians in the country, there was a shortage of workplaces. She did volunteer work in different locations and served as a doctor for the ”Hagana” during the events of the Arab revolt. Simultaneously, to make a living, she worked as laboratory assistant.
In 1939, she married Dr. Kurt Marberg and moved with him to Haifa. During those stormy times in the history of the Jewish settlement she made house calls and took care of all those in need. She moved around alone in troublesome areas, accompanied by her “bodyguard” – a German shepherd dog. In an obituary written by Miriam Lazarus (published in “Sichot” (Conversations)), she adds that after the Six-Day War, Hilde Marberg was approached by an Arab man, who told her that as a young boy he was sent to follow her as she returned from a house call in an Arab neighborhood in Haifa, to ensure that no harm should befall her.
The Marberg couple finally settled in Givatayim. Dr. Kurt Marberg managed a hospital for infectious diseases, which after the founding of the state of Israel merged with “Tel Hashomer”, where he headed a department of internal medicine. Hilde started working in the department of pediatrics at “Hadassah” hospital in Tel Aviv, and after the founding of the state moved to “Geha”, then to “Tel Hashomer”, and later to the mental health clinic in Ramat Chen, headed by Prof. Franz Bruell. In Ramat Chen she was the chief psychiatrist for children until her retirement in 1972.
At the same time, Dr. Marberg was a lecturer in the school of medicine and department of psychology at Tel Aviv University, and a member of the Psychoanalytic Society. She educated a generation of students and trainees, and according to Miriam Lazarus, was known for her humane approach, following the best tradition of the clinic in Ramat Chen and Prof. Bruell. She emphasized the importance of human dialogue between therapist and patient, as foundation that takes precedence over theory and treatment techniques. In general she distanced herself from theoretical dogmatism, and tried to convey to her students to avoid searching for such truths.
Dr. Hilde Marberg died of cancer in 1989, survived by a daughter and a son.
Lazarus Miriam, letter, Sichot, November 1989, 4(1): 73 (in Hebrew).
Levy Nissim, and Levy Yael, “The Physicians of the Holy Land, 1799-1948”,
second edition, 2012, page 292, Itay Bahur Publishing (in Hebrew).
Published articles by Dr. Marberg:
Marberg H.M., Training in child psychiatry in Israel, Acta Paedopsychiatrica, March 1966, 33(3):84-85.
Marberg H.M., Teaching child psychiatry to pediatricians, Pediatrics, June 1970, 45(6):1012-1016.
Marberg H.M., On the problem of spoiling of children during rearing and development,
Praxis der Kinderpsychologie ind Kinderpsychiatrie, April 1971, 20(3):97-102 (in German).
Marberg H.M., Changes in the rearing of kibbuz children – report on three generations,
Praxis der Kinderpsychologie und Kinderpsychiatrie, April 1972, 21(3):96-104 (in German).
Marberg H.M., Susz E., Development of a kibbutz girl who lost her father at the age of two years, Acta Paedopsychiatrica, 1972, 39(3):59-66.
Marberg H.M., Fragmentary psychoanalytic treatment of acute homosexual panic,
Psychoanalitic Review, 1972, 59(2):295-304.
Susz E., Marberg H.M., Autistic withdrawal of a small child under stress, Acta Paedopsychiatrica, May 1978, 43(4):149-158.
Marberg H.M., Child psychiatry in Israel, Acta Paedopsychiatrica, January 1981, 46(4):203-206.