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A clinical psychologist, our consultant Catherine As a business psychologist, Voula Grand consults for
Collin is an Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer in international corporations on leadership and executive
Psychological Therapies) at the University of Plymouth performance. Her rst novel is Honors Shadow. She is
in England. Catherines interests lie in primary care currently writing the sequel, Honors Ghost.
mental health and cognitive behavior therapy.


A lecturer in philosophy and psychology, Nigel Benson A writer, editor, and classical singer, Merrin Lazyan
has written several bestselling books on the subject of studied psychology at Harvard University and has
psychology, including Psychology for Beginners and worked on several ction and nonction books,
Introducing Psychiatry. spanning a broad range of topics.


A clinical psychologist and journalist, Joannah A writer and musician, Marcus Weeks studied
Ginsburg works in community treatment centers in philosophy and worked as a teacher before embarking
New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, and Dallas, and on a career as an author. He has contributed to many
regularly contributes to psychology publications. She books on the arts and popular sciences.
is joint author of This Book has Issues: Adventures in
Popular Psychology.
10 INTRODUCTION 38 We know the meaning
of consciousness so BEHAVIORISM
long as no one asks us
William James

PSYCHOLOGY IN THE MAKING 46 Adolescence is 60 The sight of tasty food

a new birth makes a hungry mans
G. Stanley Hall mouth water Ivan Pavlov
18 The four temperaments
of personality 48 24 hours after learning 62 Protless acts are
Galen something, we forget stamped out
two-thirds of it Edward Thorndike
20 There is a reasoning Hermann Ebbinghaus
soul in this machine 66 Anyone, regardless of
Descartes 50 The intelligence of their nature, can be
an individual is not trained to be anything
22 Dormez! Abb Faria a xed quantity John B. Watson
Alfred Binet
24 Concepts become forces 72 That great God-given
when they resist one 54 The unconscious sees the maze which is our human
another men behind the curtains world Edward Tolman
Johann Friedrich Herbart Pierre Janet
74 Once a rat has visited our
26 Be that self which one grain sack we can plan on
truly is Sren Kierkegaard its return Edwin Guthrie

28 Personality is composed 75 Nothing is more natural

of nature and nurture than for the cat to love
Francis Galton the rat Zing-Yang Kuo

30 The laws of hysteria 76 Learning is just not

are universal possible Karl Lashley
Jean-Martin Charcot
77 Imprinting cannot be
31 A peculiar destruction of forgotten! Konrad Lorenz
the internal connections
of the psyche 78 Behavior is shaped by
Emil Kraepelin positive and negative
reinforcement B.F. Skinner
32 The beginnings of the
mental life date from 86 Stop imagining the scene
the beginnings of life and relax
Wilhelm Wundt Joseph Wolpe
130 The good life is a process
PSYCHOTHERAPY not a state of being COGNITIVE
Carl Rogers
he must be
92 The unconscious is the Abraham Maslow
true psychical reality 160 Instinct is a dynamic
Sigmund Freud 140 Suffering ceases to be pattern Wolfgang Khler
suffering at the moment
100 The neurotic carries a it nds a meaning 162 Interruption of a task
feeling of inferiority with Viktor Frankl greatly improves its
him constantly chances of being
Alfred Adler 141 One does not become fully remembered
human painlessly Bluma Zeigarnik
102 The collective unconscious Rollo May
is made up of archetypes 163 When a baby hears
Carl Jung 142 Rational beliefs create footsteps, an assembly
healthy emotional is excited
108 The struggle between the consequences Donald Hebb
life and death instincts Albert Ellis
persists throughout life 164 Knowing is a process
Melanie Klein 146 The family is the not a product
factory where people Jerome Bruner
110 The tyranny of the are made
shoulds Karen Horney Virginia Satir 166 A man with conviction
is a hard man to change
111 The superego becomes 148 Turn on, tune in, drop out Leon Festinger
clear only when it Timothy Leary
confronts the ego with 168 The magical number 7,
hostility Anna Freud 149 Insight may cause plus or minus 2
blindness George Armitage Miller
112 Truth can be tolerated Paul Watzlawick
only if you discover it 174 Theres more to the
yourself Fritz Perls 150 Madness need not be all surface than meets
breakdown. It may also be the eye
118 It is notoriously break-through Aaron Beck
inadequate to take an R.D. Laing
adopted child into ones 178 We can listen to only one
home and love him 152 Our history does not voice at once
Donald Winnicott determine our destiny Donald Broadbent
Boris Cyrulnik
122 The unconscious is the 186 Times arrow is bent
discourse of the Other 154 Only good people get into a loop
Jacques Lacan depressed Dorothy Rowe Endel Tulving

124 Mans main task is to 155 Fathers are subject to 192 Perception is externally
give birth to himself a rule of silence guided hallucination
Erich Fromm Guy Corneau Roger N. Shepard

218 You cannot understand

193 We are constantly on a system until you try
the lookout for causal to change it
connections Kurt Lewin
Daniel Kahneman
224 How strong is the
194 Events and emotion are urge toward social
stored in memory together conformity?
Gordon H. Bower Solomon Asch

196 Emotions are a runaway 228 Life is a dramatically 238 The goal is not to advance
train Paul Ekman enacted thing knowledge, but to be
Erving Goffman in the know Serge Moscovici
198 Ecstasy is a step into
an alternative reality 230 The more you see it, 240 We are, by nature, social
Mihly Cskszentmihlyi the more you like it beings William Glasser
Robert Zajonc
200 Happy people are 242 We believe people get
extremely social 236 Who likes competent what they deserve
Martin Seligman women? Melvin Lerner
Janet Taylor Spence
202 What we believe with 244 People who do crazy
all our hearts is not 237 Flashbulb memories things are not
necessarily the truth are red by events necessarily crazy
Elizabeth Loftus of high emotionality Elliot Aronson
Roger Brown
208 The seven sins of memory 246 People do what they
Daniel Schacter are told to do
Stanley Milgram
210 One is not ones thoughts
Jon Kabat-Zinn 254 What happens when
you put good people
211 The fear is that biology in an evil place?
will debunk all that we Philip Zimbardo
hold sacred
Steven Pinker 256 Trauma must be
understood in terms
212 Compulsive behavior of the relationship
rituals are attempts to between the individual
control intrusive thoughts and society
Paul Salkovskis Ignacio Martn-Bar
286 Most human behavior 324 Emotion is an essentially
DEVELOPMENTAL is learned through unconscious process

modeling Nico Frijda
Albert Bandura
FROM INFANT TO ADULT 326 Behavior without
292 Morality develops in environmental cues
six stages would be absurdly chaotic
262 The goal of education is to Lawrence Kohlberg Walter Mischel
create men and women
who are capable of doing 294 The language organ 328 We cannot distinguish
new things Jean Piaget grows like any other the sane from the insane
body organ in psychiatric hospitals
270 We become ourselves Noam Chomsky David Rosenhan
through others
Lev Vygotsky 298 Autism is an extreme 330 The three faces of Eve
form of the male brain Thigpen & Cleckley
271 A child is not beholden to Simon Baron-Cohen
any particular parent
Bruno Bettelheim

272 Anything that grows PSYCHOLOGY OF 332 DIRECTORY

has a ground plan
274 Early emotional bonds are INTELLIGENCE
an integral part of human
nature John Bowlby 344 INDEX
304 Name as many uses
278 Contact comfort
is overwhelmingly
as you can think of
for a toothpick
important Harry Harlow J.P. Guilford

279 We prepare children for 306 Did Robinson Crusoe lack

a life about whose course personality traits before
we know nothing the advent of Friday?
Franoise Dolto Gordon Allport

280 A sensitive mother 314 General intelligence

creates a secure consists of both uid and
attachment Mary Ainsworth crystallized intelligence
Raymond Cattell
282 Who teaches a child to
hate and fear a member 316 There is an association
of another race? between insanity and
Kenneth Clark genius Hans J. Eysenck

284 Girls get better 322 Three key motivations

grades than boys drive performance
Eleanor E. Maccoby David C. McClelland

mong all the sciences, subject, but today the word most but the intangible nature of
psychology is perhaps the accurately describes the science subjects such as consciousness,
most mysterious to the of mind and behavior. perception, and memory meant that
general public, and the most prone psychology was slow in making
to misconceptions. Even though its The new science the transition from philosophical
language and ideas have inltrated Psychology can also be seen as a speculation to scientic practice.
everyday culture, most people have bridge between philosophy and In some universities, particularly in
only a hazy idea of what the subject physiology. Where physiology the US, psychology departments
is about, and what psychologists describes and explains the physical started out as branches of the
actually do. For some, psychology make-up of the brain and nervous philosophy department, while in
conjures up images of people in system, psychology examines the others, notably those in Germany,
white coats, either stafng an mental processes that take place they were established in the science
institution for mental disorders or within them and how these are faculties. But it was not until the
conducting laboratory experiments manifested in our thoughts, speech, late 19th century that psychology
on rats. Others may imagine a man and behavior. Where philosophy is became established as a scientic
with a middle-European accent concerned with thoughts and ideas, discipline in its own right.
psychoanalyzing a patient on a psychology studies how we come The founding of the worlds
couch or, if lm scripts are to be to have them and what they tell us rst laboratory of experimental
believed, plotting to exercise some about the workings of our minds. psychology by Wilhelm Wundt
form of mind control. All the sciences evolved from at the University of Leipzig in
Although these stereotypes philosophy, by applying scientic 1879 marked the recognition of
are an exaggeration, some truth methods to philosophical questions, psychology as a truly scientic
lies beneath them. It is perhaps subject, and as one that was
the huge range of subjects that fall breaking new ground in previously
under the umbrella of psychology unexplored areas of research.
(and the bewildering array of terms In the course of the 20th century,
beginning with the prex psych-) psychology blossomed; all of its
that creates confusion over what major branches and movements
psychology entails; psychologists Psychology has a long past, evolved. As with all sciences, its
themselves are unlikely to agree but only a short history. history is built upon the theories
on a single denition of the word. Hermann Ebbinghaus and discoveries of successive
Psychology comes from the generations, with many of the older
ancient Greek psyche, meaning theories remaining relevant to
soul or mind, and logia, a contemporary psychologists. Some
study or account, which seems areas of research have been the
to sum up the broad scope of the subject of study from psychologys

earliest days, undergoing different oriented psychologists was limited The behaviorists studies
interpretations by the various by the introspective nature of their concentrated almost exclusively
schools of thought, while others methods: pioneers such as Hermann on how behavior is shaped by
have fallen in and out of favor, Ebbinghaus became the subject of interaction with the environment;
but each time they have exerted their own investigations, effectively this stimulusresponse theory
a signicant inuence on restricting the range of topics to became well known through the
subsequent thinking, and have those that could be observed in work of John Watson. New learning
occasionally spawned completely themselves. Although they used theories began to spring up in
new elds for exploration. scientic methods and their Europe and the US, and attracted
The simplest way to approach theories laid the foundations for the interest of the general public.
the vast subject of psychology for the new science, many in the next However, at much the same time
the rst time is to take a look at generation of psychologists found as behaviorism began to emerge in
some of its main movements, as their processes too subjective, and the US, a young neurologist
we do in this book. These occurred began to look for a more objective in Vienna started to develop a
in roughly chronological order, from methodology. theory of mind that was to overturn
its roots in philosophy, through In the 1890s, the Russian contemporary thinking and inspire
behaviorism, psychotherapy, and physiologist Ivan Pavlov conducted a very different approach. Based
the study of cognitive, social, and experiments that were to prove on observation of patients and case
developmental psychology, to the critical to the development of histories rather than laboratory
psychology of difference. psychology in both Europe and experiments, Sigmund Freuds
the US. He proved that animals psychoanalytic theory marked
Two approaches could be conditioned to produce
Even in its earliest days, psychology a response, an idea that developed
meant different things to different into a new movement known as
people. In the US, its roots lay in behaviorism. The behaviorists felt
philosophy, so the approach taken that it was impossible to study
was speculative and theoretical, mental processes objectively, but
dealing with concepts such as found it relatively easy to observe The rst fact for us then, as
consciousness and the self. In and measure behavior: a psychologists, is that thinking
Europe, the study was rooted in the manifestation of those processes. of some sort goes on.
sciences, so the emphasis was on They began to design experiments William James
examining mental processes such that could be conducted under
as sensory perception and memory controlled conditions, at rst on
under controlled laboratory animals, to gain an insight into
conditions. However, even the human psychology, and later on
research of these more scientically humans.

a return to the study of subjective forgetting, language and language conformity, and our reasons for
experience. He was interested in acquisition, problem-solving and aggression or altruism, all of which
memories, childhood development, decision-making, and motivation. were increasingly relevant in the
and interpersonal relationships, Even psychotherapy, which modern world of urban life and
and emphasized the importance mushroomed in myriad forms ever-improving communications.
of the unconscious in determining from the original talking cure, Freuds continuing inuence
behavior. Although his ideas were was inuenced by the cognitive was felt mainly through the new
revolutionary at the time, they approach. Cognitive therapy and eld of developmental psychology.
were quickly and widely adopted, cognitive-behavioral therapy Initially concerned only with
and the notion of a talking cure emerged as alternatives to childhood development, study in
continues within the various forms psychoanalysis, leading to this area expanded to include
of psychotherapy today. movements such as humanist change throughout life, from
psychology, which focused on the infancy to old age. Researchers
New elds of study qualities unique to human life. charted methods of social, cultural,
In the mid-20th century, both These therapists turned their and moral learning, and the ways in
behaviorism and psychoanalysis attention from healing the sick to which we form attachments. The
fell out of favor, with a return to the guiding healthy people toward contribution of developmental
scientic study of mental living more meaningful lives. psychology to education and
processes. This marked the While psychology in its early training has been signicant but,
beginning of cognitive psychology, stages had concentrated largely less obviously, it has inuenced
a movement with its roots in the on the mind and behavior of
holistic approach of the Gestalt individuals, there was now an
psychologists, who were interested increasing interest in the way we
in studying perception. Their work interact with our environment and
began to emerge in the US in the other people; this became the eld
years following World War II; by the of social psychology. Like cognitive
late 1950s, cognitive psychology psychology, it owed much to the If the 19th century was
had become the predominant Gestalt psychologists, especially the age of the editorial chair,
approach. The rapidly growing Kurt Lewin, who had ed from Nazi ours is the century of the
elds of communications and Germany to the US in the 1930s. psychiatrists couch.
computer science provided Social psychology gathered pace Marshall McLuhan
psychologists with a useful during the latter half of the 20th
analogy; they used the model of century, when research revealed
information processing to develop intriguing new facts about our
theories to explain our methods of attitudes and prejudices, our
attention, perception, memory and tendencies toward obedience and

thinking about the relationship such as neuroscience and genetics. societies are or might be structured
between childhood development In particular, the nature versus as it does to diagnosing and
and attitudes to race and gender. nurture argument that dates back treating mental disorders.
Almost every psychological to Francis Galtons ideas of the The ideas and theories of
school has touched upon the subject 1920s continues to this day; psychologists have become part of
of human uniqueness, but in the recently, evolutionary psychology our everyday culture, to the extent
late 20th century this area was has contributed to the debate by that many of their ndings about
recognized as a eld in its own exploring psychological traits as behavior and mental processes are
right in the psychology of difference. innate and biological phenomena, now viewed simply as common
As well as attempting to identify which are subject to the laws of sense. However, while some of the
and measure personality traits and genetics and natural selection. ideas explored in psychology
the various factors that make up Psychology is a huge subject, conrm our instinctive feelings,
intelligence, psychologists in this and its ndings concern every one just as many make us think again;
growing eld examine denitions of us. In one form or another it psychologists have often shocked
and measures of normality and informs many decisions made in and outraged the public when their
abnormality, and look at how much government, business and industry, ndings have shaken conventional,
our individual differences are a advertising, and the mass media. long-standing beliefs.
product of our environment or the It affects us as groups and as In its short history, psychology
result of genetic inheritance. individuals, contributing as much has given us many ideas that have
to public debate about the ways our changed our ways of thinking,
An inuential science and that have also helped us to
The many branches of psychology understand ourselves, other people,
that exist today cover the whole and the world we live in. It has
spectrum of mental life and human questioned deeply held beliefs,
and animal behavior. The overall unearthed unsettling truths, and
scope has extended to overlap with provided startling insights and
many other disciplines, including The purpose of psychology solutions to complex questions.
medicine, physiology, neuroscience, is to give us a completely Its increasing popularity as a
computer science, education, different idea of the university course is a sign not
sociology, anthropology, and even things we know best. only of psychologys relevance in
politics, economics, and the law. Paul Valry the modern world, but also of the
Psychology has become perhaps enjoyment and stimulation that can
the most diverse of sciences. be had from exploring the richness
Psychology continues to and diversity of a subject that
inuence and be inuenced by the continues to examine the mysterious
other sciences, especially in areas world of the human mind.

Ren Descartes Francis Galtons

publishes The Charles Darwin research suggests
Passions of the Soul, Abb Faria publishes On the that nurture is
claiming that the investigates hypnosis Origin of the Species, more important
body and soul are in his book On the proposing that all our than nature, in
separate. Cause of Lucid Sleep. traits are inherited. Hereditary Genius.

1649 1819 1859 1869

1816 1849 1861 1874

Johann Friedrich Herbart Sren Kierkegaards book Neurosurgeon Pierre Carl Wernicke
describes a dynamic mind The Sickness Unto Death Paul Broca discovers provides evidence
with a conscious and an marks the beginning of that the left and right that damage to a
unconscious in A Text-book existentialism. hemispheres of the brain specic area of the
in Psychology. have separate functions. brain causes the loss
of specic skills.

any of the issues that many of the questions about the among them Johann Friedrich
are examined in modern world we live in, they were still Herbart, were to extend the
psychology had been not capable of explaining the machine analogy to include
the subject of philosophical debate workings of our minds. Science and the brain as well, describing
long before the development of technology did, however, provide the processes of the mind as the
science as we know it today. The models from which we could start working of the brain-machine.
very earliest philosophers of ancient asking the right questions, and The degree to which mind and
Greece sought answers to questions begin to test theories through the body are separate became a topic
about the world around us, and the collection of relevant data. for debate. Scientists wondered
way we think and behave. Since how much the mind is formed by
then we have wrestled with ideas Separating mind and body physical factors, and how much is
of consciousness and self, mind and One of the key gures in the shaped by our environment. The
body, knowledge and perception, scientic revolution of the 17th nature versus nurture debate,
how to structure society, and how century, the philosopher and fueled by British naturalist
to live a good life. mathematician Ren Descartes, Charles Darwins evolutionary
The various branches of science outlined a distinction between mind theory and taken up by Francis
evolved from philosophy, gaining and body that was to prove critical Galton, brought subjects such
momentum from the 16th century to the development of psychology. as free will, personality,
onward, until nally exploding He claimed that all human beings development, and learning to the
into a scientic revolution, which have a dualistic existencewith fore. These areas had not yet been
ushered in the Age of Reason in the a separate machinelike body and fully described by philosophical
18th century. While these advances a nonmaterial, thinking mind, or inquiry, and were now ripe
in scientic knowledge answered soul. Later psychological thinkers, for scientic study.

Wilhelm Wundt
founds the rst Hermann Ebbinghaus
laboratory of details his experiments G. Stanley Hall William James, the
experimental learning nonsense publishes the rst father of psychology
psychology in syllables in his book edition of the American publishes Principles
Leipzig, Germany. Memory. Journal of Psychology. of Psychology.

1879 1885 1887 1890

1883 1877 1889 1895

Emil Kraepelin Jean-Martin Charcot Pierre Janet Alfred Binet opens the
publishes the Textbook produces Lectures on the suggests that rst laboratory of
of Psychiatry. Diseases of the Nervous hysteria involves psychodiagnosis.
System. dissociation and
splitting of the

Meanwhile, the mysterious nature developed in distinct ways in establishment of a scientic

of the mind was popularized by the the different centers: in Germany, methodology for studying the
discovery of hypnosis, prompting psychologists such as Wundt, mind, in much the same way that
more serious scientists to consider Hermann Ebbinghaus, and Emil physiology and related disciplines
that there was more to the mental Kraepelin took a strictly scientic studied the body. For the rst time,
life than immediately apparent and experimental approach to the the scientic method was applied
conscious thought. These scientists subject; while in the US, William to questions concerning perception,
set out to examine the nature of the James and his followers at Harvard consciousness, memory, learning,
unconscious, and its inuence on adopted a more theoretical and and intelligence, and its practices
our thinking and behavior. philosophical approach. Alongside of observation and experimentation
these areas of study, an inuential produced a wealth of new theories.
The birth of psychology school of thought was growing in Although these ideas often
Against this background, the Paris around the work of neurologist came from the introspective study
modern science of psychology Jean-Martin Charcot, who had used of the mind by the researcher, or
emerged. In 1879, Wilhelm Wundt hypnosis on sufferers of hysteria. from highly subjective accounts by
founded the very rst laboratory The school attracted psychologists the subjects of their studies, the
of experimental psychology at such as Pierre Janet, whose ideas foundations were laid for the next
Leipzig University in Germany, of the unconscious anticipated generation of psychologists at the
and departments of psychology Freuds psychoanalytic theories. turn of the century to develop a
also began to appear in universities The nal two decades of the truly objective study of mind and
across Europe and the US. Just as 19th century saw a rapid rise in behavior, and to apply their own
philosophy had taken on certain the importance of the new science new theories to the treatment of
regional characteristics, psychology of psychology, as well as the mental disorders.

GALEN (C.129C.201 CE)

he Roman philosopher and
IN CONTEXT physician Claudius Galen
All things are combinations
of four basic elements: formulated a concept of
earth, air, re, and water. personality types based on the
ancient Greek theory of humorism,
BEFORE which attempted to explain the
c.400 BCE Greek physician workings of the human body.
Hippocrates says that the The roots of humorism go back
qualities of the four elements The qualities of these to Empedocles (c.495435 BCE), a
are reected in body uids. elements can be found in four Greek philosopher who suggested
corresponding humors that different qualities of the four
c.325 BCE Greek philosopher (uids) that affect the basic elementsearth (cold and
Aristotle names four sources functioning of our bodies. dry), air (warm and wet), re (warm
of happiness: sensual (hedone), and dry), and water (cold and
material (propraietari), ethical wet)could explain the existence of
(ethikos), and logical (dialogike). all known substances. Hippocrates
These humors also affect our (460370 BCE), the Father of
emotions and behaviorour Medicine, developed a medical
1543 Anatomist Andreas model based on these elements,
Vesalius publishes On the attributing their qualities to four
Fabric of the Human Body in uids within the body. These uids
Italy. It illustrates Galens errors were called humors (from the
and he is accused of heresy. Latin umor, meaning body uid).
Temperamental problems are
1879 Wilhelm Wundt says Two hundred years later, Galen
caused by an imbalance in
that temperaments develop our humors expanded the theory of humorism
in different proportions along into one of personality; he saw a
two axes: changeability direct connection between the
and emotionality. levels of the humors in the body
and emotional and behavioral
1947 In Dimensions of so by restoring the balance inclinationsor temperaments.
Personality, Hans Eysenck of our humors a physician can Galens four temperaments
suggests personality is based cure our emotional and sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric,
on two dimensions. behavioral problems. and melancholicare based on the
balance of humors in the body.
See also: Ren Descartes 2021 Gordon Allport 30609 Hans J. Eysenck
31621 Walter Mischel 32627

Phlegmatic: slow, quiet,

Melancholic: sad, shy, rational, and consistent.
fearful, depressed,
poetic, and artistic.

Choleric: ery,
and passionate.

in the
humors Claudius Galenus, better
determine Sanguine: warm-hearted, known as Galen of Pergamon
personality cheerful, optimistic, and (now Bergama in Turkey) was
type as well as condent. a Roman physician, surgeon,
inclinations toward and philosopher. His father,
certain illnesses. Aelius Nicon, was a wealthy
Greek architect who provided
him with a good education
If one of the humors develops cases, cures may include purging and opportunities to travel.
excessively, the corresponding and blood-letting. For example, a Galen settled in Rome and
personality type begins to dominate. person acting selshly is overly served emperors, including
A sanguine person has too much sanguine, and has too much blood; Marcus Aurelius, as principal
blood (sanguis in Latin) and is this is remedied by cutting down physician. He learned about
warm-hearted, cheerful, optimistic, on meat, or by making small cuts trauma care while treating
and condent, but can be selsh. A into the veins to release blood. professional gladiators, and
phlegmatic person, suffering from Galens doctrines dominated wrote more than 500 books
excess phlegm (phlegmatiks in medicine until the Renaissance, on medicine. He believed the
Greek), is quiet, kind, cool, rational, when they began to decline in the best way to learn was through
and consistent, but can be slow and light of better research. In 1543, dissecting animals and
studying anatomy. However,
shy. The choleric (from the Greek the physician Andreas Vesalius
although Galen discovered
khol, meaning bile) personality is (15141564), practicing in Italy,
the functions of many internal
ery, suffering from excess yellow found more than 200 errors in organs, he made mistakes
bile. Lastly, the melancholic (from Galens descriptions of anatomy, because he assumed that
the Greek melas khol), who suffers but although Galens medical ideas the bodies of animals (such
from an excess of black bile, is were discredited, he later inuenced as monkeys and pigs) were
recognized by poetic and artistic 20th-century psychologists. In 1947, exactly like those of humans.
leanings, which are often also Hans Eysenck concluded that There is debate over the date
accompanied by sadness and fear. temperament is biologically based, of his death, but Galen was at
and noted that the two personality least 70 when he died.
Imbalance in the humors traits he identiedneuroticism
According to Galen, some people and extraversionechoed the Key works
are born predisposed to certain ancient temperaments.
temperaments. However, since Although humorism is no longer c.190 CE The Temperaments
temperamental problems are caused part of psychology, Galens idea c.190 CE The Natural Faculties
by imbalances of the humors, he that many physical and mental c.190 CE Three Treatises on the
claimed they can be cured by diet illnesses are connected forms the Nature of Science
and exercise. In more extreme basis of some modern therapies.


The mind and the body
are separate.
Mind/body dualism
4th century BCE Greek
philosopher Plato claims that
the body is from the material The mind (or soul) is The body is a material,
world, but the soul, or mind, immaterial, but seated in the mechanical machine.
is from the immortal world pineal gland of the brain.
of ideas.
4th century BCE Greek
philosopher Aristotle says The mind can control
that the soul and body are the physical body by
inseparable: the soul is the causing animal
actuality of the body. spirits to ow through
the nervous system.
1710 In A Treatise Concerning
the Principles of Human
Knowledge, Anglo-Irish

he idea that the mind and seated in the brains pineal gland
philosopher George Berkeley body are separate and doing the thinking, while the body
claims that the body is merely different dates back to Plato is like a machine that operates by
the perception of the mind. and the ancient Greeks, but it was animal spirits, or uids, owing
1904 In Does Consciousness the 17th-century philosopher Ren through the nervous system to
Exist? William James asserts Descartes who rst described in cause movement. This idea had
detail the mind-body relationship. been popularized in the 2nd century
that consciousness is not a
Descartes wrote De Homine (Man), by Galen, who attached it to his
separate entity but a function
his rst philosophical book, in 1633, theory of the humors; but Descartes
of particular experiences.
in which he describes the dualism was the rst to describe it in detail,
of mind and body: the nonmaterial and to emphasize the separation
mind, or soul, Descartes says, is of mind and body.
See also: Galen 1819 William James 3845 Sigmund Freud 9299

In a letter to the French philosopher

Marin Mersenne, Descartes
explains that the pineal gland is
the seat of thought, and so must
be the home of the soul, because
the one cannot be separated from There is a great
the other. This was important, difference between
because otherwise the soul would mind and body.
not be connected to any solid part Ren Descartes
of the body, he said, but only to the
psychic spirits. Ren Descartes
Descartes imagined the mind
and body interacting through an Ren Descartes was born in
awareness of the animal spirits La Haye en Touraine (now
called Descartes), France. He
that were said to ow through the
contracted tuberculosis from
body. The mind, or soul, residing An analogy for the mind his mother, who died a few
in the pineal gland, located deep Taking his inspiration from the days after he was born, and
within the brain, was thought to French formal gardens of Versailles, remained weak his entire life.
sometimes become aware of the with their hydraulic systems that From the age of eight, he was
moving spirits, which then caused supply water to the gardens and educated at the Jesuit college
conscious sensation. In this way, their elaborate fountains, Descartes of La Flche, Anjou, where he
the body could affect the mind. describes the spirits of the body began the habit of spending
Likewise, the mind could affect operating the nerves and muscles each morning in bed, due
the body by causing an outow of like the force of water, and by this to his poor health, doing
animal spirits to a particular region means to cause motion in all the systematic meditation
of the body, initiating action. parts. The fountains were controlled about philosophy, science,
by a fountaineer, and here Descartes and mathematics. From 1612
found an analogy for the mind. He to 1628, he contemplated,
traveled, and wrote. In 1649,
explained: There is a reasoning
he was invited to teach Queen
soul in this machine; it has its
Christina of Sweden, but her
principal site in the brain, where it early-morning demands on his
is like the fountaineer who must be time, combined with a harsh
at the reservoir, whither all the climate, worsened his health;
pipes of the machine are extended, he died on February 11, 1650.
when he wishes to start, stop, or in Ofcially, the cause of death
some way alter their actions. was pneumonia, but some
While philosophers still argue as historians believe that he
to whether the mind and brain are was poisoned to stop
somehow different entities, most the Protestant Christina
psychologists equate the mind converting to Catholicism.
with the workings of the brain.
However, in practical terms, the Key works
distinction between mental and
1637 Discourse on the Method
physical health is a complex one:
Descartes illustrated the pineal 1662 De Homine (written 1633)
gland, a single organ in the brain the two being closely linked when 1647 The Description of the
ideally placed to unite the sights and mental stress is said to cause Human Body
sounds of the two eyes and the two physical illness, or when chemical 1649 The Passions of the Soul
ears into one impression. imbalances affect the brain.

ABBE FARIA (17561819)

he practice of inducing state, but its use as a healing
IN CONTEXT trance states to promote therapy was largely abandoned until
healing is not new. Several the German doctor Franz Mesmer
ancient cultures, including those of reintroduced it in the 18th century.
Egypt and Greece, saw nothing Mesmers treatment involved
BEFORE strange about taking their sick to manipulating the bodys natural, or
1027 Persian philosopher and sleep temples so they could be animal, magnetism, through the
physician Avicenna (Ibn Sina) cured, while in a sleeplike state, by use of magnets and suggestion.
writes about trances in The suggestions from specially trained After being mesmerized, or
Book of Healing. priests. In 1027, the Persian magnetized, some people suffered
physician Avicenna documented a convulsion, after which they
1779 German physician Franz the characteristics of the trance claimed to feel better.
Mesmer publishes A Memoir
on the Discovery of Animal
1843 Scottish surgeon James combines with the
Braid coins the term neuro- A gentle request or highly concentrated
hypnotism in Neurypnology. commanding order mind of a subject
1880S French psychologist
Emile Cou discovers the
placebo effect and publishes
Self-Mastery Through
Conscious Autosuggestion.
1880S Sigmund Freud
investigates hypnosis and its In this state
apparent power to control the subject becomes to induce a state of
unconscious symptoms. more susceptible lucid sleep
to the power of (hypnotic trance).
See also: Jean-Martin Charcot 30 Sigmund Freud 9299 Carl Jung 10207 Milton Erickson 336

A few years later, Abb Faria, a

Portugese-Goan monk, studied
Mesmers work and concluded that
it was entirely absurd to think
that magnets were a vital part of the
process. The truth was even more Nothing comes from the
extraordinary: the power to fall into magnetizer; everything comes
trance or lucid sleep lay entirely from the subject and takes
with the individuals concerned. place in his imagination.
No special forces were necessary, Abb Faria
because the phenomena relied only
upon the power of suggestion.

Lucid sleep
Faria saw his role as a concentrator,
helping his subject get into the right
Franz Mesmer induced trance
state of mind. In On The Cause through the application of magnets,
of Lucid Sleep, he describes his often to the stomach. These were said
method: After selecting subjects to bring the bodys animal magnetism
with the right aptitude, I ask them back into a harmonious state.
to relax in a chair, shut their eyes,
concentrate their attention, and surgeon James Braid, from the Jean-Martin Charcot began to use
think about sleep. As they quietly Greek hypnos, meaning sleep hypnotism systematically in the
await further instructions, and osis meaning condition. Braid treatment of traumatic hysteria.
I gently or commandingly say: concluded that hypnosis is not a This brought hypnosis to the
Dormez! (Sleep!) and they fall type of sleep but a concentration attention of Josef Breuer and
into lucid sleep. on a single idea, resulting in Sigmund Freud, who were to
It was from Farias lucid sleep heightened suggestibility. After his question the drive behind the
that the term hypnosis was death, interest in hypnosis largely hypnotic self, and discover the
coined in 1843 by the Scottish waned until the French neurologist power of the unconscious.

Abb Faria Born in Portuguese Goa, Jos could so quickly alter his state
Custdio de Faria was the son of of mind. He moved to France,
a wealthy heiress, but his parents where he played a prominent
separated when he was 15. part in the French Revolution
Armed with introductions to the and rened his techniques of
Portuguese court, Faria and his self-suggestion while imprisoned.
father traveled to Portugal where Faria became a professor of
both trained as priests. On one philosophy, but his theater
occasion, the young Faria was shows demonstrating lucid
asked by the queen to preach in sleep undercut his reputation;
her private chapel. During the when he died of a stroke in 1819
sermon, he panicked, but his he was buried in an unmarked
father whispered, They are all grave in Montmartre, Paris.
men of strawcut the straw!
Faria immediately lost his fear and Key work
preached uently; he later
wondered how a simple phrase 1819 On the Cause of Lucid Sleep


Experiences and sensations
APPROACH combine to form ideas.
1704 German philosopher
Gottfried Leibniz discusses Dissimilar ideas resist
petites perceptions (perceptions Similar ideas can
coexist or combine.
one another and become
without consciousness) in his forces in conict.
New Essays on Human
1869 German philosopher
One idea is forced
Eduard von Hartmann to become favored
publishes his widely read over another.
Philosophy of the Unconscious.
1895 Sigmund Freud and
The unfavored idea leaves
Josef Breuer publish Studies The favored idea stays
consciousness; it becomes
on Hysteria, introducing in consciousness.
an unconscious idea.
psychoanalysis and its
theories of the unconscious.
1912 Carl Jung writes The

Psychology of the Unconscious, ohann Herbart was a German the mind must use some kind of
suggesting that all people have philosopher who wanted to system for differentiating and
a culturally specic collective investigate how the mind storing ideas. He also wanted to
worksin particular, how it account for the fact that although
manages ideas or concepts. Given ideas exist forever (Herbart thought
that we each have a huge number of them incapable of being destroyed),
ideas over the course of our lifetime, some seem to exist beyond our
how do we not become increasingly conscious awareness. The 18th-
confused? It seemed to Herbart that century German philosopher
See also: Wilhelm Wundt 3237 Sigmund Freud 92 99 Carl Jung 102 07

Anna Freud 111 Leon Festinger 166 67

Thoughts and feelings contain

energy, according to Herbart, acting
on each other like magnets to attract
Two ideas that
or repel like or unlike ideas.
cannot coexist
comfortably repel
each other...
Ideas that do
not contradict +
each other are
drawn together and ...and one of Johann Friedrich
can coexist in + + them may even be Herbart
consciousness. pushed out of
consciousness. Johann Herbart was born in
Oldenburg, Germany. He was
tutored at home by his mother
until he was 12, after which
he attended the local school
before entering the University
Gottfried Leibniz was the rst However, if two ideas are unalike, of Jena to study philosophy.
to explore the existence of ideas they may continue to exist without He spent three years as a
beyond awareness, calling them association. This causes them to private tutor before gaining
petite (small) perceptions. As weaken over time, so that they a doctorate at Gttingen
an example, he pointed out that eventually sink below the threshold University, where he lectured
we often recall having perceived of consciousness. Should two ideas in philosophy. In 1806,
somethingsuch as the detail in directly contradict one another, Napoleon defeated Prussia,
a sceneeven though we are not resistance occurs and concepts and in 1809, Herbart was
aware of noticing it at the time. This become forces when they resist one offered Immanuel Kants chair
means that we perceive things and another. They repel one another of philosophy at Knigsberg,
store a memory of them despite the with an energy that propels one of where the Prussian king and
his court were exiled. While
fact that we are unaware of doing so. them beyond consciousness, into
moving within these
a place that Herbart referred to as aristocratic circles, Herbart
Dynamic ideas a state of tendency; and we now met and married Mary Drake,
According to Herbart, ideas form know as the unconscious. an English woman half his
as information from the senses Herbart saw the unconscious age. In 1833, he returned
combines. The term he used for as simply a kind of storage place for to Gttingen University,
ideasVorsfellungencompasses weak or opposed ideas. In positing following disputes with the
thoughts, mental images, and even a two-part consciousness, split by a Prussian government, and
emotional states. These make up distinct threshold, he was attempting remained there as Professor
the entire content of the mind, and to deliver a structural solution for the of Philosophy until his death
Herbart saw them not as static management of ideas in a healthy from a stroke, aged 65.
but dynamic elements, able to move mind. But Sigmund Freud was to
and interact with one another. see it as a much more complex and Key works
Ideas, he said, can attract and revealing mechanism. He combined
1808 General Practical
combine with other ideas or feelings, Herbarts concepts with his own
or repulse them, rather like magnets. theories of unconscious drives to 1816 A Text-book in
Similar ideas, such as a color and form the basis of the 20th-centurys Psychology
tone, attract each other and combine most important therapeutic 1824 Psychology as Science
to form a more complex idea. approach: psychoanalysis.


he fundamental question, understanding oneself, famously
IN CONTEXT Who am I? has been saying: The unexamined life is not
studied since the time worth living. Sren Kierkegaards
of the ancient Greeks. Socrates book The Sickness Unto Death
(470399 BCE) believed the main (1849) offers self-analysis as a
BEFORE purpose of philosophy is to increase means to understanding the
5th century BCE Socrates happiness through analyzing and problem of despair, which he
states the key to happiness is
discovering the true self.
AFTER I wish to be other than I am: to have a different self.
1879 Wilhelm Wundt uses
self-analysis as an approach
to psychological research.
So I try to make myself into someone different.
1913 John B. Watson
denounces self-analysis in
psychology, stating that
introspection forms no I fail and despise myself I succeed and abandon
essential part of its methods. for failing. my true self.
1951 Carl Rogers publishes
Client-centered Therapy, and
in 1961 On Becoming a Person. Either way, I despair of my true self.
1960 R.D. Laings The Divided
Self redenes madness,
offering existential analysis
of inner conict as therapy. To escape despair I must accept my true self.

1996 Rollo May bases his

book, The Meaning of Anxiety,
on Kierkegaards The Concept To be that self which one truly is, is indeed the
of Anxiety. opposite of despair.
See also: Wilhelm Wundt 3237 William James 3845 Carl Rogers 13037 Rollo May 141 R.D. Laing 15051

Napoleons overreaching ambition his old self. In both his desire and
for power, as depicted in this painting accomplishment, he wants to be
of him as a student, led him to lose rid of his self. This disavowal of
sight of his true self and all-too-human
the self is painful: despair is
limitations, and ultimately to despair.
overwhelming when a man wants
to shun himselfwhen he does not
from an acute consciousness of the possess himself; he is not himself.
self, coupled with a profound dislike However, Kierkegaard did offer a
of it. When something goes wrong, solution. He concluded that a man
such as failing an exam to qualify can nd peace and inner harmony
as a doctor, a person may seem by nding the courage to be his
to be despairing over something true self, rather than wanting to be
that has been lost. But on closer someone else. To will to be that
inspection, according to Kierkegaard, self which one truly is, is indeed the
considered to stem not from it becomes obvious that the man is opposite of despair, he said. He
depression, but rather from the not really despairing of the thing believed that despair evaporates
alienation of the self. (failing an exam) but of himself. when we stop denying who we
Kierkegaard described several The self that failed to achieve a really are and attempt to uncover
levels of despair. The lowest, and goal has become intolerable. The and accept our true nature.
most common, stems from ignorance: man wanted to become a different Kierkegaards emphasis on
a person has the wrong idea about self (a doctor), but he is now stuck individual responsibility, and the
what self is, and is unaware of with a failed self and in despair. need to nd ones true essence
the existence or nature of his and purpose in life, is frequently
potential self. Such ignorance is Abandoning the real self regarded as the beginning of
close to bliss, and so inconsequential Kierkegaard took the example of existentialist philosophy. His
that Kierkegaard was not even sure a man who wanted to become ideas led directly to R.D. Laings
it could be counted as despair. Real an emperor, and pointed out that use of existential therapy, and
desperation arises, he suggested, ironically, even if this man did have inuenced the humanistic
with growing self-awareness, and somehow achieve his aim, he therapies practiced by clinical
the deeper levels of despair stem would have effectively abandoned psychologists such as Carl Rogers.

Sren Kierkegaard Sren Kierkegaard was born to an on his life. A solitary gure, his
afuent Danish family, and raised main recreational activities
as a strict Lutheran. He studied included walking the streets to
theology and philosophy at chat with strangers, and taking
Copenhagen University. When he long carriage rides alone into
came into a sizeable inheritance, the countryside.
he decided to devote his life to Kierkegaard collapsed in
philosophy, but ultimately this left the street on October 2, 1855,
him dissatised. What I really and died on November 11 in
need to do, he said, is to get Friedrichs Hospital, Copenhagen.
clear about what I am to do, not
what I must know. In 1840, he Key works
became engaged to Regine Olsen,
but broke off the engagement, 1843 Fear and Trembling
saying that he was unsuited to 1843 Either/Or
marriage. His general state of 1844 The Concept of Anxiety
melancholy had a profound effect 1849 The Sickness Unto Death


IN CONTEXT Personality is composed of elements from

two different sources.
Nurture is that which is experienced
1690 British philosopher John from birth onward.
Locke proposes that the mind
of every child is a tabula rasa, Nature is that
or blank slate, and hence we which is inborn and
are all born equal. inherited, and We can improve our skills and
1859 Biologist Charles Darwin abilities through training and
suggests that all human learning, but
development is the result of
adaptation to the environment.
1890 William James claims nature sets the limits to how far we
that people have genetically can develop our talents.
inherited individual
tendencies, or instincts.
AFTER Nature and nurture both play a part, but nature is the
1925 Behaviorist John B. determining factor.
Watson says there is no
such thing as inheritance of
capacity, talent, temperament,

rancis Galton counted many to identify nature and nurture
or mental constitution. gifted individuals among as two separate inuences whose
1940s Nazi Germany seeks to his relatives, including the effects could be measured and
create a master Aryan race evolutionary biologist Charles compared, maintaining that these
through eugenics. Darwin. So its not surprising that two elements alone were responsible
Galton was interested in the extent for determining personality. In 1869,
to which abilities are either inborn he used his own family tree, as well
or learned. He was the rst person as those of judges, statesmen,
See also: John B. Watson 6671 Zing-Yang Kuo 75 G. Stanley Hall 4647
Eleanor E. Maccoby 28485 Raymond Cattell 31415

defective nurture. Intelligence, he

says, is inherited, but must be
fostered through education.
In 1875, Galton undertook a
study of 159 pairs of twins. He
Characteristics cling found that they did not follow the
to families. normal distribution of similarity
Francis Galton between siblings, in which they are
moderately alike, but were always
extremely similar or extremely
dissimilar. What really surprised Francis Galton
him was that the degree of similarity
never changed over time. He had Sir Francis Galton was a
anticipated that a shared upbringing polymath who wrote prolically
on many subjects, including
commanders, scientists, literary would lessen dissimilarity between
anthropology, criminology
men diviners, oarsmen, and twins as they grew up, but found (classifying ngerprints),
wrestlers, to research inherited that this was not the case. Nurture geography, meteorology,
traits for his book Hereditary seemed to play no role at all. biology, and psychology. Born
Genius. As predicted, he found The naturenurture debate in Birmingham, England, into a
more highly talented individuals in continues to this day. Some people wealthy Quaker family, he was
certain families than among the have favored Galtons theories, a child prodigy, able to read
general population. However, he including his notionnow known from the age of two. He
could not safely attribute this to as eugenicsthat people could studied medicine in London
nature alone, as there were also be bred like horses to promote and Birmingham, then
conferred benets from growing up certain characteristics. Others have mathematics at Cambridge,
in a privileged home environment. preferred to believe that every baby but his study was cut short by
Galton himself grew up in a wealthy is a tabula rasa, or blank slate, a mental breakdown, worsened
household with access to unusually and we are all born equal. Most by his fathers death in 1844.
Galton turned to traveling
good educational resources. psychologists today recognize that
and inventing. His marriage
nature and nurture are both crucially
in 1853 to Louisa Jane Butler
A necessary balance important in human development, lasted 43 years, but was
Galton proposed a number of other and interact in complex ways. childless. He devoted his life
studies, including the rst large to measuring physical and
survey by questionnaire, which was psychological characteristics,
sent out to members of the Royal devising mental tests, and
Society to inquire about their writing. He received many
interests and afliations. Publishing awards and honors in
his results in English Men of Science, recognition of his numerous
he claimed that where nature and achievements, including
nurture are forced to compete, nature several honorary degrees
triumphs. External inuences can and a knighthood.
make an impression, he says, but
nothing can efface the deeper marks Key works
of individual character. However, he
Galtons study of twins looked for 1869 Hereditary Genius
insists that both nature and nurture resemblances in many ways, including 1874 English Men of Science:
are essential in forming personality, height, weight, hair and eye color, and Their Nature and Nurture
since even the highest natural disposition. Handwriting was the only 1875 The History of Twins
endowments may be starved by aspect in which twins always differed.


nown as the founder of Charcot suggested that hysterias
IN CONTEXT modern neurology, French similarity to a physical disease
physician Jean-Martin warranted a search for a biological
Charcot was interested in the cause, but his contemporaries
Neurological science relationship between psychology dismissed his ideas. Some even
BEFORE and physiology. During the 1860s believed that Charcots hysterics
1900 BCE The Egyptian Kahun and 1870s, he studied hysteria, a were merely acting out behavior
Papyrus recounts behaviorial term then used to describe extreme that Charcot had suggested to
disturbances in women caused emotional behavior in women, them. But one student of Charcot,
by a wandering uterus. thought to be caused by problems Sigmund Freud, was convinced
with the uterus (hystera in Greek). of hysterias status as a physical
c.400 BCE Greek physician Symptoms included excessive illness, and was intrigued by it. It is
Hippocrates invents the term laughing or crying, wild bodily the rst disease Freud describes
hysteria for certain womens movements and contortions, in his theory of psychoanalysis.
illnesses in his book, On the fainting, paralysis, convulsions, and
Diseases of Women. temporary blindness and deafness.
From observing thousands of
1662 English physician cases of hysteria at the Salptrire
Thomas Willis performs Hospital in Paris, Charcot dened
autopsies on hysterical The Laws of Hysteria, believing
women, and nds no sign that he understood the disease
of uterine pathology. completely. He claimed that hysteria
AFTER was a lifelong, inherited condition
1883 Alfred Binet joins and its symptoms were triggered
by shock. In 1882, Charcot stated:
Charcot at the Salptrire
In the [hysterical] t everything
Hospital in Paris, and later Charcot gave lectures on hysteria
unfolds according to the rules, which at the Salptrire Hospital in Paris.
writes about Charcots use of are always the same; they are valid
hypnotism to treat hysteria. He believed hysteria always followed
for all countries, for all epochs, for all ordered, clearly structured phases, and
1895 Sigmund Freud, a races, and are, in short, universal. could be cured by hypnotism.
former student of Charcot,
publishes Studies on Hysteria. See also: Alfred Binet 5053 Pierre Janet 5455 Sigmund Freud 9299


erman physician Emil second, paranoia, manifests in
IN CONTEXT Kraepelin believed that patients as a state of fear and
the origins of most mental persecution; they report being
illnesses are biological, and he is spied upon or talked about. The
Medical psychiatry often regarded as the founder of third, hebephrenia, is marked by
BEFORE modern medical psychiatry. In his incoherent speech, and often by
C.50 BCE Roman poet and Textbook of Psychiatry, published inappropriate emotional reactions
philosopher Lucretius uses in 1883, Kraepelin offered a detailed and behavior, such as laughing
the term dementia to mean classication of mental illnesses, loudly at a sad situation. The fourth
being out of ones mind. including dementia praecox, category, catatonia, is marked by
meaning early dementia, to extremely limited movement and
1874 Wilhelm Wundt, distinguish it from late-onset expression, often in the form of
Kraepelins tutor, publishes dementia, such as Alzheimers. either rigidness, such as sitting in
Principles of Physiological the same position for hours, or
Psychology. Schizophrenia excessive activity, such as rocking
In 1893, Kraepelin described backward and forward repeatedly.
AFTER dementia praecox, now called Kraepelins classication still
1908 Swiss psychiatrist schizophrenia, as consisting forms the basis of schizophrenia
Eugen Bleuler coins the term of a series of clinical states diagnosis. In addition, postmortem
schizophrenia, from the which hold as their common a investigations have shown that
Greek words skhizein (to split) peculiar destruction of the internal there are biochemical and structural
and phren (the mind). connections of the psychic brain abnormalities, as well as
1948 The World Health personality. He observed that the impairments of brain function, in
Authority (WHO) includes illness, characterized by confusion schizophrenia sufferers. Kraepelins
and antisocial behavior, often starts belief that a great number of mental
Kraepelins classications
in the late teens or early adulthood. illnesses are strictly biological in
of mental illnesses in its
Kraepelin later divided it into four origin exerted a lasting inuence
International Classication subcategories. The rst, simple on the eld of psychiatry, and many
of Diseases (ICD). dementia, is marked by slow mental disorders are still managed
1950s Chlorpromazine, the decline and withdrawal. The with medication today.
rst antipsychotic drug, is
used to treat schizophrenia. See also: Wilhelm Wundt 3237 R.D. Laing 15051
WILHELM WUNDT (18321920)

So all psychology
APPROACH Consciousness is
must begin with
inner experience.
Experimental psychology self-observation
5th century Ancient Greek
philosophers Aristotle and
Plato claim that animals have
a low level, distinctly recorded through
nonhuman consciousness. Every living being has experimentation
this inner experience. designed to expose
1630s Ren Descartes says involuntary reactions.
that animals are automata
without feeling.
1859 British biologist Charles
Darwin links humans to
animal ancestors.
Every living being must This yields
AFTER always have had quantitative data
1949 Konrad Lorenz changes this inner experience. about consciousness.
the way people see animals by
showing their similarities to
humans in King Solomons Ring.
2001 American zoologist
Donald Grifn argues in
Animal Minds that animals The beginnings
of the mental life Psychology is
have a sense of the future, the scientic study
complex memory, and perhaps date from the of the mental life.
consciousness itself. beginnings of life.

he idea that nonhuman The similarity of humans to animals on animals might be revealing.
animals have minds and was a critical issue for philosophers, This was the position held by the
are capable of some form of but even more so for psychologists. German physician, philosopher,
thought dates back to the ancient In the 15th century, the French and psychologist Wilhelm Wundt,
Greek philosophers. Aristotle philosopher Ren Descartes claimed who described a continuum of life
believed that there are three kinds that animals are no more than from even the smallest animals to
of mind: plant, animal, and human. reex-driven, complex machines. ourselves. In his book Principles of
The plant mind is concerned only If Descartes was correct, observing Physiological Psychology, he claimed
with nutrition and growth. The animals could tell us nothing about that consciousness is a universal
animal mind has these functions, our own behavior. However, when possession of all living organisms,
but can also experience sensations, Charles Darwin asserted some 200 and has been since the evolutionary
such as pain, pleasure, and desire, years later that humans are linked process began.
as well as initiating motion. The to other animals genetically, and To Wundt, the very denition of
human mind can do all this and that consciousness operates from life includes having some kind of
reason; Aristotle claims that only the creatures at the very lowest end mind. He declared: From the
humans have self-awareness and of the evolutionary scale to ourselves, standpoint of observation, then, we
are capable of higher-level cognition. it became clear that experiments must regard it as a highly probable
See also: Ren Descartes 2021 William James 3845 Edward Thorndike 6265 John B. Watson 6671

B.F. Skinner 7885

physical bodiesfor example,

in stimulus and response
experiments. If a nerve ber in
a dead frog is given a small electric
shock, the connecting muscles
twitch, causing the legs to move.
The beginnings of a
The fact that this happens even in
differentiation of mental a dead animal illustrates that such
function can be found movements can occur without any
even in the protozoa. consciousness. In living creatures,
Wilhelm Wundt such actions are the basis of the
automatic behavior that we call
Even single-celled organisms have
some form of consciousness, according reexes, such as immediately
to Wundt. He suggested the amoebas moving your hand when you touch
ability to devour food items indicates something hot.
a continuity of mental processes. Wundts second type of
observation, termed introspection
hypothesis that the beginnings of which were modeled on his or self-observation, is internal
of the mental life date from as far original laboratory and were led by observation. This involves noticing
back as the beginnings of life at pupils such as Edward Titchener and recording internal events such
large. The question of the origin and James Cattell. as thoughts and feelings. It is
of mental development thus crucial in research because it
resolves itself into the question Observing behavior provides information about how
of the origin of life. Wundt went on Wundt believed that the exact the mind is working. Wundt was
to say that even simple organisms description of consciousness interested in the relationship
such as protozoa have some form of is the sole aim of experimental between the inner and outer
mind. This last claim is surprising psychology. Although he worlds, which he did not
today, when few people would understood consciousness as an see as mutually exclusive, but
expect a single-celled animal to inner experience, he was only as interactive, describing it as
demonstrate even simple mental interested in the immediately
abilities, but it was even more real or apparent form of this
surprising when rst stated more experience. This ultimately led
than 100 years ago. him to the study of behavior, which
Wundt was keen to test out his could be studied and quantied by
theories, and he is often called the direct observation.
father of experimental psychology Wundt said that there are two
because he set up the worlds rst types of observation: external and
formal laboratory of experimental internal. External observation
psychology in Leipzig University, is used to record events that are
Germany, in 1879. He wanted visible in the external world, and
to carry out systematic research on is useful in assessing relationships
the mind and behavior of humans, such as cause and effect on
initially through subjecting the
basic sensory processes to close
Wundts laboratory set the style
examination. His laboratory for psychology departments around
inspired other universities in the world. His experiments moved
the US and Europe to set up psychology out of the domain of
psychology departments, many philosophy and into science.
physical and psychical. He began
to concentrate on the study of
human sensations, such as the
visual sensation of light, because
these are the agencies that link
the external physical world and
the internal mental world.
In one experiment, Wundt
asked individuals to report on their
sensations when shown a light
signalwhich was standardized
Our sensations provide details of
to a specic color and a certain level shape, size, color, smell, and texture,
of brightness, and shone for a xed but when these are internalized, Wundt
length of time. This ensured that says, they are compounded into complex
each participant experienced representations, such as a face.
exactly the same stimulus, enabling
responses of different participants
to be compared and the experiment and he used various instruments of actionsrepresentation, willing,
to be repeated at a later date, if to measure this response exactly. and feelingwhich together form
required. In insisting upon this He was also just as interested to an impression of a unitary ow of
possibility for replication, Wundt hear what his participants reported events. Representations are either
set the standard for all future in common as he was in apparent perceptions, if they represent an
psychological experiments. individual differences. image in the mind of an object
In his sensory experiments, Pure sensations, Wundt perceived in the external world
Wundt set out to explore human suggested, have three components: (such as a tree within eyesight),
consciousness in a measurable quality, intensity, and feeling-tone. or intuitions if they represent a
way. He refused to see it as an For example, a certain perfume may subjective activity (such as
unknowable, subjective experience have a sweet odor (quality) that is remembering a tree, or imagining
that is unique to each individual. distinct but faint (intensity) and is a unicorn). He named the process
In the light-response experiments, pleasant to smell (feeling-tone), through which a perception or
he was particularly interested in the while a dead rat might give off a intuition becomes clear in
amount of time between a person nauseating (quality), strong consciousness apperception.
receiving some form of stimulus and (intensity) stench (feeling-tone). All So, for example, you may perceive
making a voluntary reaction to it consciousness originates in a sudden loud noise and then
(rather than an involuntary one), sensations, he said, but these are apperceive that it is a warning sign,
not internalized as pure sensory meaning that you are about to be
data; they are perceived as already hit by a car if you dont get out of
collected or compounded into the way quickly enough.
representations, such as a dead rat. The willing category of
Wundt called these images of an consciousness is characterized
object or of a process in the external by the way it intervenes in the
The exact description world. So, for example, if we see a external world; it expresses our
of consciousness is the face with certain featuresmouth volition, or will, from raising
sole aim of experimental shape, eye color, nose size, and so an arm to choosing to wear red.
psychology. onwe may recognize the face as This form of consciousness is
Wilhelm Wundt a person we know. beyond experimental control or
measurement. However, Wundt
Categories of consciousness found that the third category of
Based on his sensory experiments, consciousness, feeling, could be
Wundt claimed that consciousness measured through subjective
consists of three major categories reports from experimental
participants, or through measuring considered by many psychologists
levels of behavior such as tension to be a key difference between
and relaxation or excitement. human beings and the rest of the
animal kingdom. There may be
Cultural psychology a few exceptions, including
For Wundt, the psychological In the course of normal nonhuman primates such as
development of a person is speaking the will is chimpanzees, but language is
determined not only by sensations continuously directed to generally considered to be a
but also by complex social and bringing the course of ideas human ability that is very
cultural inuences, which cannot and the articulatory important in consciousness.
be replicated or controlled in an movements into harmony
experimental situation. He included with each other. Consciousness and species
religion, language, myths, history, Wilhelm Wundt The denition of consciousness
art, laws, and customs among continues to be debated, but it has
these inuences, discussing them not fundamentally changed since
in a ten-volume work, Cultural Wundt. The level of consciousness
Psychology, which he wrote during within animals has not yet been
the last 20 years of his life. established, and this has led to the
Wundt saw language as an formation of special Codes of Ethics
especially important part of cultures understand the meaning that the for animal experiments, intensive
contribution to consciousness. Any speaker is trying to convey, but farming, and blood sports such as
verbal communication begins with the actual words may not be as fox hunting and bull ghting. Of
a general impression, or unied important as the general impression, particular concern is whether
idea of something we wish to say. especially if strong emotions are animals experience discomfort,
Having apperceived this general involved. As evidence of the fact that fear, and pain in ways that
starting point, we then choose we use this process, Wundt points resemble the form in which we feel
words and sentences to express it. out that we often remember the them ourselves. The fundamental
While speaking, we monitor the general meaning of what a person question of which animals have
accuracy of the intended meaning. has said long after weve forgotten self-awareness or consciousness
We might say, No, thats not right, I the specic words that were used. remains unanswered, although few
mean, and then choose a different The ability to use true language, psychologists today would assume,
word or phrase to express ourselves as opposed to just exchanging as Wundt did, that it applies even
better. Whoever is listening has to limited signs and signals, is today to the microscopic protozoa.

Wilhelm Wundt Born in Baden (now Mannheim) for his work on visual perception.
Germany, Wilhelm Wundt was While at Heidelberg, Wundt
the fourth child in a family with started teaching the worlds rst
a long history of intellectual course in experimental
achievement. His father was a psychology, and in 1879 opened
Lutheran minister. The young the rst psychology laboratory.
Wundt was allowed little time for Wundt wrote over 490 works
play, as he was pushed through and was probably the worlds
a rigorous educational regime, most prolic scientic writer.
attending a strict Catholic school
from the age of 13. He went on to Key works
study at the universities of Berlin,
Tbingen, and Heidelberg, 1863 Lectures on the Mind
graduating in medicine in 1856. of Humans and Animals
Two years later, Wundt became 1896 Outline of Psychology
assistant to the physician Hermann 1873 Principles of Physiological
von Helmholtz, who was famous Psychology
WILLIAM JAMES (18421910)

he term consciousness is
IN CONTEXT generally used to refer to
an individuals awareness
of his or her own thoughts, including
Analysis of consciousness
sensations, feelings, and memories.
BEFORE We usually take this awareness
1641 Ren Descartes denes for granted, except when we are
having difcultiessuch as trying
does not appear to itself
consciousness of self in terms chopped up in bits It is
of the ability to think. to do something when we are
very tired. But if you focus your nothing jointed; it ows.
1690 English philosopher thoughts on your consciousness, William James
and physician John Locke you soon become aware that your
denes consciousness as conscious experiences are constantly
the perception of what changing. While reading this book,
passes in a mans own mind. for example, you may be reminded
1781 German philosopher of past experiences or present
Immanuel Kant states that discomforts that interrupt your
simultaneous events are concentration; plans for the future naturally described. In talking of it
experienced as a unity may spontaneously spring to mind. hereafter, let us call it the stream of
of consciousness. Thinking about your conscious thought, of consciousness.
experiences makes you realize Jamess famous description
AFTER just how much your thoughts are of the stream... of consciousness
1923 Max Wertheimer in changing, and yet they seem to is one that almost everyone can
Laws of Organization in come together, merging and identify with, because we all
Perceptual Forms shows carrying on smoothly as a whole. experience it. Yet, at the same
how the mind actively American psychologist William time, James points out that it is
interprets images. James compared these everyday very hard to actually dene: When
experiences of consciousness to I say every thought is part of a
1925 John B. Watson
a stream that continuously ows, personal consciousness, personal
dismisses consciousness
despite the odd interruption and consciousness is one of the terms
as neither a denite nor a
change of direction. He declared: in question to give an accurate
usable concept.
A river or a stream are the account of it is the most difcult
metaphors by which it is most of philosophic tasks.

William James William James was born in 1842 In 1873, James returned to
to a wealthy and inuential New Harvard, where he became a
York family, and traveled widely professor of both philosophy
as a child, attending schools in and psychology. He set up the
both Europe and the US. James rst experimental psychology
showed early artistic ability and courses in the US, playing a key
initially pursued a career as a role in establishing psychology
painter, but his growing interest as a truly scientic discipline.
in science eventually led to him He retired in 1907, and died
to enrol at Harvard University in peacefully at his home in New
1861. By 1864, he had moved to Hampshire in 1910.
Harvard Medical School, although
his studies were interrupted by Key works
bouts of physical illness and
depression. He nally qualied 1890 The Principles of Psychology
as a physician in 1869, but never 1892 Psychology
practiced medicine. 1897 The Will to Believe
See also: Ren Descartes 2021 Wilhelm Wundt 3237 John B. Watson 6671 Sigmund Freud 9299

Fritz Perls 11217 Wolfgang Khler 16061 Max Wertheimer 335

This most difcult of philosophic

tasks has a long history. The
ancient Greeks discussed the Consciousness seems to be a
mind, but did not use the term stream of thoughts.
consciousness or any equivalent.
However, there was debate as
to whether something separate
from the body exists at all. In the
fourth century BCE, Plato made a
distinction between the soul and These thoughts are Each thought follows
body, but Aristotle argued that entirely separate one after another
even if there is a distinction, the from each other
two cannot be separated.

Early denitions
Ren Descartes, in the mid-17th
century, was one of the rst
philosophers to attempt to describe and yet somehow they
combine to give us a sense of
consciousness, proposing that it
unied consciousness.
resides in an immaterial domain
he called the realm of thought, in
contrast to the physical domain of
material things, which he called
the realm of extension. However,
the rst person accredited with the
modern concept of consciousness This is because thoughts that enter our
as an ongoing passage of individual awareness at the same time form a pulse
perceptions is the 17th-century within the stream of consciousness.
English philosopher John Locke.
James was drawn to Lockes idea of
passing perceptions and also to the
work of the 18th-century German
philosopher Immanuel Kant. Kant
was impressed by the way our These pulses jolt us from ...but continue to
experiences come together, noting one conclusion (or resting stream onward.
that if we hear a noise and feel pain place) to another...
at the same time, we typically
experience these as one event.
He called this the unity of
consciousness, a concept that
inuenced many later philosophers,
including William James. We know the
James felt the most important meaning of Our consciousness is
point about consciousness is that consciousness so constantly evolving.
it is not a thing but a processit long as no one asks
is what the brain does to steer a us to dene it.
nervous system grown too complex
to regulate itself. It allows us to
words, take twelve men, and to thoughts, or sensations, he believed,
each give one word. Then stand the are unavoidably connected, like
men in a row or jam, and let each Kants example of hearing a noise
think of his word as intently as he and feeling pain at precisely the
will; nowhere will there be a same time, because any thoughts
No-one ever had a simple consciousness of the whole that enter our awareness during the
sentence. If consciousness is a same moment of time combine to
sensation by itself:
stream of distinct thoughts, James form a pulse, or current, within the
consciousness struggled to see how these combine. stream. We may have many of
is of a teeming As he said, The idea of a plus the these currents owing through our
multiplicity of idea of b is not identical with the consciousness, some fast and some
objects and relations. idea of (a + b). Two thoughts added slow. James stated that there are
William James together cannot be made into one even resting points, where we
idea. They are more likely to form pause to form pictures in our
an entirely new idea. For example, minds, which can be held and
if thought a is its nine oclock, contemplated at length. He called
and thought b is the train leaves the resting places substantive
at 9:02, thought cIm going to parts, and the moving currents
miss my train!might follow. the transitive parts, claiming that
reect upon the past, present, our thinking is constantly being
and future, to plan and adapt to Combining thoughts dislodged from one substantive
circumstances and so fulll what James concluded that the simplest part toward another, propelled by
he believed was the prime purpose way to understand how thoughts the transitive parts, or current. We
of consciousnessto stay alive. within the stream of consciousness are, therefore, effectively bumped
But James found it hard to might combine to make sense is from one conclusion to another by
imagine the structure of a unied to suppose that things that are the constant stream of thoughts,
consciousness. He likened it to a known together are known in whose purpose is to pull us ever
group of 12 men: Take a dozen single pulses of that stream. Some forward in this way. There is no

can one but the sentence

only of word not whole

The 12-word sentence problem was used by James to

illustrate his difculty in grasping how a unied consciousness
stems from separate thoughts. If each man is aware of just one
word, how can there be a consciousness of the whole sentence?
Dots of pure color make up this work
by the French Post-Impressionist
painter Georges Seurat. Yet our brain
combines these separate elements so
that what we see is a human gure.

nal conclusion; consciousness is

not a thing but a process, which
is constantly evolving.
James also drew attention to the
personal nature of consciousness,
stating that thoughts do not exist
independently of a thinkerthey
are your thoughts or mine. Each one
is owned by someone, and never
comes into direct sight of a thought
in another personal consciousness
than its own. And it is these
thoughts connected as we feel
them to be connected that form
the self. As thoughts cannot be
divided from the self, James said
that investigating this self should
be the starting point of psychology.
Experimental psychologists did not
agree, because the self cannot be
offered up for experimentation, but
James thought it was enough to
work with our understanding of a
self that does certain things and
feels in certain ways. He called this
the empirical self, which
manifests itself through its
behavior, and suggested that it
consists of several partsthe
material self, spiritual self, and physiological condition. To illustrate Another example, according to his
social selfeach of which can be this theory, James used the example theory, would be that you feel happy
studied through introspection. of seeing a bear, then running away. because you are conscious that you
It is not the case that you see the are smiling; it is not that you feel
Theory of emotion bear, feel afraid, and then run away happy rst, and then smile.
In the early stages of his research because of the fear. What is really
into consciousness, James realized happening is that you see the bear Pragmatism
that the emotions play an important and run away, and the conscious Related to Jamess theories about
role in our daily lives, and went on to feeling of fear is caused by the consciousness is his approach to the
develop, with his colleague Carl action of running. This contradicts way we believe things to be true or
Lange, a theory about how they what most people might think, but not. He stated that truths emerge
relate to our actions and behavior. Jamess view was that the minds from facts... but... the facts
What was to become known as the perception of the physical effects of themselves are not true; they simply
JamesLange Theory of Emotion runningrapid breathing, increased are. Truth is the function of the
states that emotions arise from your heartbeat, and perspiring heavily beliefs that start and terminate
conscious minds perception of your is translated into the emotion of fear. among them.
Curies scientic knowledge had assessing consciousness as
been questioned and modied, but objectively as possible, and
its core truths remained intact. to understand its underlying
mechanismsboth physical
Further studies and psychological.
The period following Jamess death Modern neuroscience has
There is but one
saw the rise of the behaviorist demonstrated that there are
indefectibly certain movement, and a decline of interest mechanisms of consciousness.
truth the truth that the in consciousness. Consequently, By the closing years of the 20th
present phenomenon of little theorizing on the subject century, the British molecular
consciousness exists. happened from around the start of biologist and biophysicist
William James the 1920s up until the 1950s. One Francis Crick was claiming that
important exception was the consciousness is related to a
German-based Gestalt movement, specic part of the brainthe
which emphasized that the brain prefrontal cortex area, which is
operates in a holistic way, taking involved in thought processes
account of whole conscious such as planning, problem-solving,
experiences, rather than separate and the control of behavior.
James dened true beliefs as eventsjust as when we look at a Research carried out by the
those that the believer nds useful. picture, we see not just separate Colombian neuroscientist Rodolfo
This emphasis on the usefulness of dots, lines, and shapes, but a Linas links consciousness to
beliefs lies at the heart of the meaningful whole. This concept the activities of the thalamus in
American philosophical tradition of is behind the now famous Gestalt conjunction with the cerebral
pragmatism, which was central to phrase: The whole is greater than cortex. The thalamus, a structure
Jamess thinking. the sum of the parts. embedded deep in the center of the
In the course of our lives, James Since the 1980s, however, brain, is responsible for regulating
claimed that we are continually psychologists and neuroscientists vibrations inside the brain at
testing truths against each have developed a new eld of certain frequencies; if these regular
other, and our conscious beliefs research called consciousness rhythms are disruptedby an
keep changing, as old truths studies, focusing on two main infection or genetic causesthen
are modied, and sometimes areas of interest: the content of an individual may experience
replaced by new truths. This consciousness, as reported by neurological disorders, such as
theory is particularly relevant to people who are considered to be epilepsy and Parkinsons disease,
the way that all scientic research, normal and healthy; and the as well as psychological conditions,
including psychology, progresses. consciousness of people whose such as depression.
James cited the discovery of the state of awareness has been
radioactive element radium by impaired in some way. The latter
Pierre and Marie Curie in 1902 group includes cases, such as
as an example. In the course of when the subject is in a persistent
their investigations, the Curies vegetative state (PVS)in which
found that radium appeared to patients in a coma are awake and
give off unlimited amounts of breathing independently, but have
energy, which seemed for a apparently lost all higher brain
moment to contradict our ideas of functions. The goal with both paths
the whole order of nature. of research is to try to nd ways of
However, after conscious
consideration of this revelation,
Pierre and Marie Curies research,
they concluded that although it like most scientic work, modied, rather
extends our old ideas of energy, it than totally contradicted, earlier theories.
causes a minimum of alteration in New truths, James claimed, constantly
their nature. In this instance, the modify our basic beliefs in a similar way.
MRI scans of the brain have
helped to identify structures such
as the thalamus, seen in the center
of this scan, that appear to have
links to consciousness.

But when it comes to denitions

of consciousness, modern attempts
still remain vague and difcult to
apply. For example, the American
neuroscientist Antonio Damasio
calls consciousness the feeling
of what happens, and denes it
as an organisms awareness of
its own self and its surroundings.
As William James suggested,
more than 100 years earlier,
consciousness is hard to dene.

Lasting legacy
An edited version of Jamess 1890
book, The Principles of Psychology,
is still in print, and his ideas have
been a major inuence on many Before James started teaching the vastly benecial discipline owes
psychologists, as well as other subject at Harvard in 1875, there much to his work. In 1977, in a
scientists and thinkers. The were no independent psychology speech celebrating the 75th
application of his pragmatic courses available in any American anniversary of the formation of
philosophy to factsconcentrating university. But within 20 years, the American Psychological
not on what is true but on what it around 24 colleges and universities Association, David Krech, then
is useful to believehas helped in the US had recognized Professor Emeritus in psychology
psychology move on from the psychology as a distinct academic at the University of California at
question of whether the mind and discipline, and were offering Berkeley, referred to James as
body are separate or not to a more degrees in the subject. Three the father of psychology.
useful study of mental processes, specialist psychology journals
such as attention, memory, were also founded in that time,
reasoning, imagination, and and a professional organization
intention. James claimed his the American Psychological
approach helped to move Associationwas formed.
philosophers and psychologists James introduced experimental
away from abstraction, xed psychology to America, despite All these consciousnesses
principles, closed systems, and claiming to hate experimental melt into each other
pretended absolutes and origins, work. He did so because he had like dissolving views.
towards facts, action, and power. come to realize that it was the best Properly they are but one
His insistence on focusing on the way to prove or disprove a theory. protracted consciousness,
wholeness of events, including the But he continued to value the use of one unbroken stream.
effects of different environments introspection as a tool of discovery, William James
on our actionsin contrast to the especially of mental processes.
introspective, structuralist approach The shift in the perception of
of breaking down our experiences psychology and its concerns from
into small detailshas also shaped being considered, a nasty little
our understanding of behavior. subject (in Jamess words) into a

G. STANLEY HALL (18441924)

IN CONTEXT Human development is determined by

APPROACH nature: it is a repetition of our ancestral record.
Human development
1905 Sigmund Freud, in
Three Essays on the Theory of A child has animallike dispositions
Sexuality, claims the teenage and goes through several growth stages.
years are the genital stage.
1928 American anthropologist
Margaret Mead, in Coming At adolescence, the evolutionary momentum
of Age in Samoa, declares subsides; this is a time for individual change.
that adolescence is only
recognized as a distinct
stage of human development
in Western society.
During this wild, lawless time,
1950 Erik Erikson, in teenagers are increasingly sensitive, reckless,
Childhood and Society, self-conscious, and prone to depression.
describes adolescence as
the stage of Identity vs.
Role Confusion, coining
the term identity crisis.
The child then emerges as an adult: a more civilized,
1983 In Margaret Mead higher-order being.
and Samoa, New Zealand
anthropologist Derek Freeman
disputes Meads claim that
adolescence is merely a
socially constructed concept. Adolescence is a new birth.
See also: Francis Galton 2829 Wilhelm Wundt 3237 Sigmund Freud 9299

Erik Erikson 27273

he word adolescence curve of despondency that starts
literally means growing at the age of 11, peaks at 15, then
up (from the Latin falls steadily until the age of 23.
adolescere). In theory, it describes Modern research acknowledges
a distinct stage between childhood a similar pattern. The causes of
and adulthood, but in practice often depression that Hall identied are
simply denes the teenage years. startlingly familiar: suspicion of
In most Western societies, the idea being disliked and having seemingly
of adolescence was not recognized insuperable character faults, and
until the 20th century; childhood the fancy of hopeless love. He
ended and adulthood began at a believed the self-consciousness of G. Stanley Hall
certain agetypically at 18. adolescence leads to self-criticism
Pioneering psychologist and and censoriousness of self and Born into a farming family
educator, G. Stanley Hall, in his others. This view mirrors later in Asheld, Massachusetts,
Granville Stanley Hall
1904 book Adolescence, was the studies, which argue that teenagers
graduated from Williams
rst academic to explore the subject. advanced reasoning skills allow College, Massachusetts in
Hall was inuenced by Darwins them to read between the lines, 1867. His plans to travel were
theory of evolution, believing that while also magnifying their thwarted through lack of
all childhoods, especially with sensitivity to situations. Even Halls funds, so he followed his
regard to behavior and early claim that criminal activity is more mothers wish and studied
physical development, reect the prevalent in the teenage years, theology for a year in New
course of evolutionary change, and peaking around 18, still holds true. York, before moving to
that we each develop in accordance But Hall was not totally negative Germany. On Halls return to
with our ancestral record. about adolescence. As he wrote in America in 1870, he studied
One key inuence on Hall Youth: Its Education, Regiment, with William James for four
was the 18th-century Sturm and Hygiene, Adolescence is a years at Harvard, gaining the
und Drang (Storm and Stress) new birth, for the higher and more rst psychology PhD in the
movement of German writers completely human traits are now US. He then returned to
Germany for two years to
and musicians, which promoted born. So, for Hall, adolescence
work with Wilhelm Wundt
total freedom of expression. Hall was in fact a necessary beginning
in his Leipzig laboratory.
referred to adolescence as Sturm of something much better. In 1882, Hall became a
und Drang; he considered it a stage professor at Johns Hopkins
of emotional turmoil and rebellion, University, Baltimore, where he
with behavior ranging from quiet set up the rst US laboratory
moodiness to wild risk-taking. specically for psychology. He
Adolescence, he stated, craves also launched the American
strong feelings and new sensations Journal of Psychology in 1887,
monotony, routine, and detail are Adolescence is when the and became the rst president
intolerable. Awareness of self and very worst and best impulses of the American Psychological
the environment greatly increases; in the human soul Association in 1892.
everything is more keenly felt, and struggle against each
sensation is sought for its own sake. other for possession. Key works
G. Stanley Hall
1904 Adolescence
Modern echoes 1906 Youth: Its Education,
Many of Halls ndings are echoed Regiment, and Hygiene
in research today. Hall believed that 1911 Educational Problems
adolescents are highly susceptible 1922 Senescence
to depression, and described a


forgetting is items forgotten can be
Memory studies
most rapid within the relearned faster than new
BEFORE rst nine hours. ones learned for the rst time.
5th century BCE The
ancient Greeks make use of
such as key words or rhymes,
that aid memory.
1582 Italian philosopher
Giordano Bruno in The Art meaningful
of Memory gives methods for material that
things are
is studied
memorizing, using diagrams Ebbinghauss remembered
of knowledge and experience. memory for about ten
experiments times longer
AFTER (over-learned) is
showed that than random,
1932 Frederick Bartlett says longer.
that every memory is a blend things.
of knowledge and inference.
1949 Donald Hebb, in The
Organization of Behavior,
describes how learning results
from stimulated brain cells
linking up into assemblies.
items toward the repeated learning sessions
1960 US psychologist Leo beginning and end of over a longer interval of
Postman nds that new a series are most easily time improves memory
learning can interfere with remembered. retention on any subject.
previous learning, causing
retroactive interference.
See also: Donald Hebb 163 Bluma Zeigarnik 162 George Armitage Miller 16873 Endel Tulving 18691 Gordon H.
Bower 19495 Daniel Schacter 20809 Frederic Bartlett 33536

n 1885, Hermann Ebbinghaus recite a series correctly at speed.
became the rst psychologist He tested different list lengths and
to systematically study different learning intervals, noting
learning and memory by carrying the speed of learning and forgetting.
out a long, exhausting experiment Ebbinghaus found that he could
on himself. Philosophers such as remember meaningful material,
John Locke and David Hume had such as a poem, ten times more
argued that remembering involves easily than his nonsense lists. He
associationlinking things or also noted that the more times the
ideas by shared characteristics, stimuli (the nonsense syllables)
such as time, place, cause, or were repeated, the less time was
effect. Ebbinghaus tested the effect needed to reproduce the memorized
of association on memory, recording information. Also, the rst few
the results mathematically to see if repetitions proved the most
Learning material and committing
memory follows veriable patterns. effective in memorizing a list. it to memory within an hour of hearing
When looking at his results for it, Ebbinghaus showed, will mean that
Memory experiments evidence of forgetting, Ebbinghaus we remember it for longer and can
Ebbinghaus started by memorizing found, unsurprisingly, that he recall it more easily.
lists of words and testing how tended to forget less quickly the
many he could recall. To avoid the lists that he had spent the most two-thirds of anything memorized
use of association, he then created time memorizing, and that recall is is forgotten. Plotted on a graph, this
2,300 nonsense syllables, all three best performed immediately after shows a distinct forgetting curve
letters long and using the standard learning. Ebbinghaus also uncovered that starts with a sharp drop,
word format of consonantvowel an unexpected pattern in memory followed by a shallow slope.
consonant: for example, ZUC and retention. He found that there is Ebbinghauss research launched
QAX. Grouping these into lists, typically a very rapid loss of recall a new eld of enquiry, and helped
he looked at each syllable for a in the rst hour, followed by a establish psychology as a scientic
fraction of a second, pausing for 15 slightly slower loss, so that after discipline. His meticulous methods
seconds before going through a list nine hours, about 60 percent is remain the basis of all psychological
again. He did this until he could forgotten. After 24 hours, about experimentation to this day.

Hermann Ebbinghaus Hermann Ebbinghaus was born in two psychology laboratories

Barmen, Germany, to a family of and founded an academic
Lutheran merchants. At 17, he journal. Ebbinghaus later moved
began to study philosophy at to Breslau University, where he
Bonn University, but his academic also established a laboratory,
career was disrupted in 1870 by and nally to Halle, where he
the Franco-Prussian War. In 1873, taught until his death from
he completed his studies and pneumonia at the age of 59.
moved to Berlin, later traveling to
France and England, where he Key works
carried out research on the power
of his own memory, starting in 1885 Memory: A Contribution
1879. He published Memory in to Experimental Psychology
1885, detailing the nonsense 18971908 Fundamentals
syllable research, and in the of Psychology (2 volumes)
same year became a professor at 1908 Psychology: An
Berlin University, where he set up Elementary Textbook


Intelligence theory

1859 English naturalist
Charles Darwin proposes

that intelligence is inherited
in On the Origin of Species.

From 1879 Wilhelm Wundt
applies scientic methods to
psychology, seeking objective
ways of measuring mental

ALFRED BINET (18571911) abilities such as intelligence.

1890 US psychologist James
Cattell devises tests to
measure differences in
individual mental abilities.
1920s English educational
psychologist Cyril Burt claims
intelligence is mainly genetic.
1940s Raymond Cattell denes
two types of intelligence: uid
(inborn) and crystallized
(shaped by experience).

n 1859, Charles Darwin set
out his theory of evolution
in On the Origin of Species,
providing a framework for the
debate over whether intelligence
was xed by genetic inheritance, or
could be modied by circumstances.
His cousin, Francis Galton, carried
out tests on the cognitive abilities
of around 9,000 people in London
in the early 1880s, and concluded
that basic intelligence was xed
at birth. Around the same time,
Wilhelm Wundt proposed the idea
of an intelligence quotient (IQ),
and made attempts to measure it.
Wundts work inspired studies into
the measurement of mental abilities
by the American psychologist
See also: Francis Galton 2829 Jean-Martin Charcot 30 Wilhelm
Wundt 3237 Raymond Cattell 31415

Intelligence testing can only measure

an individuals mental abilities at a particular time

and in a particular context.

Alfred Binet
Alfred Binet was born in Nice,
Abilities change within short periods of time; France, but moved to Paris at
they also change over the long-term as part a young age after his parents
of the developmental process. separated. He gained a law
degree in 1878, then studied
sciences at the Sorbonne, in
preparation for taking up
medicine. But Binet decided
Intelligence will alter during a persons lifetime. that his real interest lay in
psychology, and although he
was largely self-taught, in
1883 he was offered a post at
Pariss Salptrire Hospital by
The intelligence of an individual Jean-Martin Charcot. After his
is not a xed quantity. marriage the following year,
and the birth of two daughters,
he began to take an interest in
intelligence and learning. In
1891, Binet was appointed
James Cattell, and were also to his children absorbed new
associate director of the
form the basis of Alfred Binets information varied according Sorbonnes Laboratory of
research into human intelligence. to how much they were paying Experimental Psychology,
attention. Context, and the childs becoming director in 1894.
Fascination with learning frame of mind, seemed to be Many honors have been
Binet studied law and natural critical to learning. heaped upon Binet since his
science before psychology captured On hearing of Francis Galtons untimely death in 1911. These
his interest. He was largely self- testing in London, Binet decided include changing the name of
taught, although working with to carry out his own large-scale La Socit Libre pour lEtude
Jean-Martin Charcot at Pariss research on assessing differences Psychologique de lEnfant to
Salptrire Hospital for more than in individual abilities between La Socit Alfred Binet in 1917.
seven years gave him a rm grasp various special-interest groups,
of experimental procedures, with such as mathematicians, chess Key works
their need for precision and careful players, writers, and artists. At the
1903 Experimental Study
planning. His desire to study same time, he continued his study
of Intelligence
human intelligence grew out of his of the functional intelligence of 1905 The Mind and Brain
fascination with the development children, noting that they became 1911 A Method of Measuring
of his own two daughters. He noted capable of certain skills at specic the Development of Intelligence
that the speed and ease with which ages. For example, very young
children were not capable of and intellectually challenged
abstract thoughtthis seemed children, and to nd a way of
to be a hallmark of an increased measuring these differences.
level of intelligence that was
directly attributable to age. The BinetSimon Scale
In 1899, Binet was invited to Binet was joined in his task by There is in intelligence
join a new organization dedicated Thodore Simon, a research scientist
a fundamental agency,
to educational research, La Socit at the Sorbonnes Laboratory of
Libre pour LEtude Psychologique Experimental Psychology, where
the lack or alteration
de lEnfant (The Free Society for Binet had been director since
of which has the greatest
the Psychological Study of the 1894. It was to be the beginning importance for practical
Child). Within a short time, he of a long and fruitful collaboration life: that is judgment.
became the groups leader, and between the two scientists. Alfred Binet
began to publish articles and By 1905, Binet and Simon had
information useful to teachers created their rst test, labeled
and education ofcials. Around the New Methods for Diagnosing
same time, it became mandatory Idiocy, Imbecility, and Moron
for all children in France to attend Status. Soon after, they introduced
school between the ages of six and a revised version, for children aged
12, and Binet was asked to consider three to 13, which was simply strange visitors. He has received
how to develop a test that would called the BinetSimon Scale. It in turn a doctor, a lawyer, and then
identify children who might have was revised once more in 1908, a priest. What is taking place?
learning disabilities, so that they and then again in 1911. Binet and Simon tested their
could receive schooling that was Based on their many years Scale on a sample of 50 children,
appropriate to their needs. In 1904, of observing children, Binet and divided equally between ve age
this work led to Binet being asked Simon put together 30 tests of groups. These children had been
to join a government commission increasing difculty, using a range selected by their school teachers
to devise a method of assessing of tasks that reected the average as being average for their age,
learning potential in infants, and abilities of children at different providing a baseline measure of
he made it his mission to establish ages. The easiest tasks included normality against which children
the differences between normal following a beam of light, or of all abilities could be measured.
engaging in basic conversation Binet and Simons 30 tasks,
with the person who was testing arranged in order of difculty,
them. Slightly more difcult tasks were to be carried out under
included pointing to various carefully controlled conditions.
named body parts, repeating a Binet had learned from observing
series of two digits, repeating his daughters that children are
simple sentences, and dening easily distracted, and that their
basic words such as house or level of attention plays a critical role
fork. In the more difcult tests, in their ability to perform. He saw
children were asked to describe intelligence as a mixture of
the difference between pairs of multifaceted mental faculties
similar objects, to reproduce that operate within a real world of
drawings from memory, and to ever-changing circumstances, and
construct sentences around three are controlled by practical judgment.
given words. The very hardest
tasks included repeating seven Intelligence is not xed
Taking intelligence tests, which are
still largely based on the BinetSimon random digits, nding three rhymes Binet was always frank about the
Scale, has become an almost standard for the French word obisance; limitations of the BinetSimon
way of predicting a childs potential and answering questions such as Scale. He was keen to point out
to be successful at school. My neighbor has been receiving that the scale simply ordered
children from their performance BinetSimon tests generate an IQ (intelligence
of intellectual tasks in relation to quotient) number, representing an overall level of
other children of a similar age. performance. This can be plotted on a graph to
reveal IQ variations across groups or populations.
The tests of 1908 and 1911 placed
greater emphasis on tests for
different age groups, and it was
this that eventually led to the 34 .13
.13% %
concept of mental age. 34
Binet also stressed that mental

development progressed at different

rates and could be inuenced by


environmental factors. He preferred

to think of his tests as a way of
assessing mental level at a
particular point in time, because 2.
4% 14
this allowed for an individuals level 2.1
to change as their circumstances 0.13%
changed. This was in opposition
to the views of the inuential IQ 52 68 84 100 116 132 148
English psychologist Charles
Spearman, who later proposed
that intelligence was based on saw the BinetSimon Scale as a his work. When he eventually
biological factors alone. way of rooting out feebleminded became aware of the foreign ideas
Binet maintained that a people for compulsory sterilization. being grafted on his instrument he
childs intelligence is not a xed In 1916, yet another American strongly condemned those who with
quantity, but grows just as the psychologist, Lewis Terman, brutal pessimism and deplorable
child does, and that even though he modied the BinetSimon Scale. verdicts promoted the concept of
had devised a way of quantifying Using test results from a large intelligence as a single constant.
it, no number could ever give an sample of American children, he Binets concept of the IQ test
accurate measure of a persons renamed it the StanfordBinet remains the basis of intelligence
intelligence. A complete picture, Scale. It was no longer used solely testing today. Despite its
Binet thought, could only be formed to identify children with special shortcomings, it has generated
from an accompanying case study. needs, but to pick out those who research that has advanced our
Ultimately, Binet did not believe might be suitable for streaming knowledge of human intelligence.
that it was possible to measure off into more vocational, or job-
intellectual aptitude as if it were oriented, education, effectively
a length or a capacity; it was only condemning them to a lifetime of
possible to classify it. menial work. Terman, like Goddard,
believed that intelligence was
Uses and abuses inherited and unchangeable, so no
In 1908, the American psychologist amount of schooling could alter it. I have not sought
Henry H. Goddard traveled to Binet was probably unaware of to sketch a method
Europe, where he discovered the these uses of his work for quite some of measuring but only
BinetSimon tests. He translated time. He was an isolated gure, a method of classication
them, distributing around 22,000 who rarely concerned himself with of individuals.
copies across the US to be used for professional developments outside Alfred Binet
testing in schools. Unfortunately, his immediate sphere. He never
while Binet had been careful not to traveled outside France, where the
attribute intelligence to hereditary BinetSimon Scale was not adopted
factors, Goddard thought that it during his lifetime, so he was never
was genetically determined. He confronted by any modications of

PIERRE JANET (18591947)

etween around 1880 and
IN CONTEXT 1910, there was a great deal
If someone shows of interest in the condition
APPROACH physiological signs of dissociationthe separation of
Neurological science of terror or distress for some mental processes from
no apparent reason
BEFORE a person's conscious mind, or
1878 Jean-Martin Charcot normal everyday personality. Mild
in Diseases of the Nervous dissociation, in which the world
System describes the seems dreamlike and unreal, is
symptoms of hysteria, then common, and affects most people
considered to be a distinct, at some time or other. It is often
biological illness. caused by illnesses, such as u, or
they may be caused
by a subconscious idea drugs, including alcohol, and may
AFTER lead to a partial or complete loss of
1895 Sigmund Freud suggests memory during and after the period
that dissociation is one of the of dissociation. In rare cases of
minds defense mechanisms. what was then described as
multiple personality disorder, a
1900s American neurologist person appears to have two or
Morton Prince suggests more distinct personalities. Such
that there is a spectrum of that therapy reveals
to be related to an earlier extreme examples are now classied
dissociative disorders. as dissociative identity disorder.
traumatic incident.
1913 French naturalist J.P.F. The French philosopher and
Deleuze describes dissociation physician Pierre Janet is credited
as being like the formation of with being the rst person to study
two distinct peopleone of and describe dissociation as a
them fully awake, and the psychiatric condition. In the late
other in a trancelike state. 1880s and early 1890s, he worked
at the Salptrire hospital in Paris,
This may in severe cases
1977 Ernest R. Hilgard's lead to dissociationthe where he treated patients who
Divided Consciousness existence of two were suffering from hysteria. He
discusses the splitting up of separate consciousnesses. published case studies of several
consciousness by hypnosis. women who showed extreme
symptoms. A patient called
See also: Jean-Martin Charcot 30 Alfred Binet 5053 Sigmund Freud 9299 Thigpen & Cleckley 33031

Ernest R. Hilgard 337

Signicantly, Lucie 3 could recall a behavior as the subconscious. But

traumatic experience, while on Sigmund Freud thought this term
vacation at the age of seven, when was too vague, and instead labeled
she was terried by two men who the source of his patients' mental
were hiding behind a curtain. traumas as the unconscious. Freud
also developed Janet's ideas,
These people are
Subconscious trauma stating that dissociation was a
persecuted by something, Lucie's childhood trauma, Janet universal defense mechanism.
and you must investigate concluded, was the cause of her Janets work was neglected for
carefully to get to the root. dissociation. As he wrote in decades, as the use of hypnotism to
Pierre Janet Psychological Automatism: To investigate and treat mental illness
have ones body in the posture of was discredited. However, since
terror is to feel the emotion of terror; the late 20th century, it has again
and if this posture is determined by attracted interest from psychologists
a subconscious idea, the patient studying dissociative disorders.
will have the emotion alone in his
consciousness without knowing
Lucie, for example, would usually why he feels this way. As her terror
be calm, but then suddenly became took hold, Lucie would say, I'm
agitated, crying and looking afraid and I don't know why. The
terried for no apparent reason. unconscious, said Janet, is having
She seemed to have three distinct its dream; it sees the men behind
personalities, which Janet named the curtains, and puts the body in a
Lucie 1, Lucie 2, and Lucie 3, posture of terror. Janet added that
and would change between them he believed traumatic events and
unexpectedly, especially when stress could cause dissociation in
Childhood traumas may appear to
hypnotized. Lucie 1 had only her anyone with that predisposition. be forgotten, but according to Pierre
own memories, as did Lucie 2, but Janet described the part of the Janet, they can often remain in the
Lucie 3 could remember events mind that he believed was behind subconscious part of the mind, giving
relating to all three personalities. uncharacteristic and disturbed rise to mental problems in later life.

Pierre Janet Pierre Janet was born into a Inuenced by Jean-Martin

cultured, middle-class family in Charcot, Janet extended his
Paris, France. As a child he loved studies to include hysteria,
the natural sciences, and began becoming director of Charcot's
collecting and cataloging plants. laboratory at Paris's Salptrire
His philosopher uncle, Paul Janet, Hospital in 1898. He also taught
encouraged him to study both at the Sorbonne, and was made
medicine and philosophy, and Professor of Psychology at the
after attending the elite cole Collge de France in 1902.
Normale Suprieure in Paris,
he went on to receive a masters Key works
degree in philosophy from the
Sorbonne. Aged just 22, Janet was 1893 The Mental State of
appointed Professor of Philosophy Hystericals
at the Lyce in Le Havre, where 1902 Neuroses
he launched his research into 1907 The Major Symptoms
hypnotically induced states. of Hysteria

Charles Darwin John B. Watson

publishes The Expression publishes Psychology As Zing-Yang Kuos
of the Emotions in Men The Behaviorist Views It, Ivan Pavlov experiments with cats
and Animals arguing which becomes the demonstrates classical and rats attempt to show
that behaviors are unofcial behaviorist conditioning in his that there is no such
evolutionary adaptations. manifesto. experiments on dogs. thing as instinct.

1872 1913 1927 1930

1898 1920 1929 1930

Edward Thorndikes John B. Watson Karl Lashleys B.F. Skinner

Law of Effect states experiments on Little experiments in brain demonstrates the
that responses which Albert, teaching the dissection show that the effects of operant
produce satisfying baby a conditioned whole brain is involved conditioning in
effects are more likely emotional response. in learning. experiments on rats.
to be repeated.

y the 1890s, psychology the mindbehaviorunder strictly physical processes, and it was a
was accepted as a scientic controlled laboratory conditions. Russian physiologist, Ivan Pavlov,
subject separate from its As John B. Watson put it, who unwittingly provided a basis
philosophical origins. Laboratories psychology is that division of for the emergent behaviorist
and university departments had Natural Science which takes psychology. In his now famous
been established in Europe and human behaviorthe doings study of salivation in dogs, Pavlov
the US, and a second generation of and sayings, both learned and described how an animal responds
psychologists was emerging. unlearnedas its subject matter. to a stimulus in the process of
In the US, psychologists anxious Early behaviorists, including conditioning, and gave psychologists
to put the new discipline on an Edward Thorndike, Edward the foundation on which to build
objective, scientic footing reacted Tolman, and Edwin Guthrie, the central idea of behaviorism. The
against the introspective, designed experiments to observe notion of conditioning, often
philosophical approach taken the behavior of animals in carefully referred to as stimulusresponse
by William James and others. devised situations, and from these (SR) psychology, shaped the form
Introspection, they felt, was by tests inferred theories about how behaviorism was to take.
denition subjective, and theories humans interact with their The behaviorist approach
based on it could be neither proved environment, as well as about concentrated on observing
nor disproved; if psychology was learning, memory, and conditioning. responses to external stimuli,
to be treated as a science, it would ignoring inner mental states and
have to be based on observable Conditioning responses processes, which were thought
and measurable phenomena. Behaviorist experiments were to be impossible to examine
Their solution was to study the inuenced by similar experiments scientically and therefore could
manifestation of the workings of devised by physiologists studying not be included in any analysis of

Karl Lorenz discovers

the phenomenon of Clark L. Hull states B.F. Skinner publishes Noam Chomsky
imprinting, where baby that drive reduction Verbal Behavior, in which writes a critical
animals assume a parent (satisfying our basic he claims that speech is review of Verbal
because of sensory human needs) is the a product of past Behavior that helps
information received only true basis of behavioral and spark the cognitive
at a critical time. reinforcement. genetic history. revolution.

1935 1943 1957 1959

1938 1948 1958 1960S

Edwin Guthrie suggests Cognitive Maps in Rats Joseph Wolpe conducts Neal Millers
that single-trial and Men by Edward desensitization experiments lead
learning is adequate; Tolman suggests that techniques on war to the discovery
conditioning need not we develop cognitive veterans suffering from of biofeedback
rely on repetition. maps while we go war neurosis. techniques.
about our daily lives.

behavior. The shift from mind to consequences, not by a preceding this time was Edward Tolman,
behavior as a basis for the study of stimulus. Although the concept a behaviorist whose theories
psychology was revolutionary, and was similar to ideas proposed by had not dismissed the importance
was even accompanied by a William James, it radically altered of perception and cognition, due
behaviorist manifestothe paper the course of behaviorism, taking to his interest in German-based
Psychology as the Behaviorist Views into account genetic factors and Gestalt psychology. Advances in
It, delivered in 1913 by Watson. explaining mental states as a result neuroscience, explored by another
In the US, which was leading the (rather than as a cause) of behavior. behaviorist, Karl Lashley, also
eld in psychology, behaviorism played a part in shifting the
became the dominant approach for The cognitive revolution emphasis from behavior to
the next 40 years. Evolving from By the mid-20th century, however, the brain and its workings.
the idea of Pavlovian or classical psychologists were questioning the Behaviorism had now run its
conditioning came Watsons behaviorist approach. Ethology, the course, and was superseded by the
assertion that environmental study of animal behavior, showed various branches of cognitive
stimuli alone shape behavior; the importance of instinctive as well psychology. However, its legacy,
innate or inherited factors are not as learned behaviora nding that particularly in establishing a
involved. The next generation sat uncomfortably with strict ideas scientic methodology for the
included the radical behaviorist of conditioning. A reaction to subject, and in providing models
B.F. Skinner, who proposed a Skinners ideas also sparked the that could be used in psychological
rethink of the stimulusresponse cognitive revolution, which experimentation, was a lasting one.
notion in his theory of operant turned attention once again from Behavioral therapy is also still in
conditioningwhich stated that behavior back to the mind and use today, as an essential part of
behavior was shaped by mental processes. A key gure at cognitive-behavioral therapy.

IVAN PAVLOV (18491936)

any of the key discoveries
IN CONTEXT An unconditioned made when modern
stimulus (such as being psychology was still in its
presented with food) infancy were the result of research
Classical conditioning
by scientists working in other elds.
BEFORE Ivan Pavlov, a Russian physiologist,
Early 12th century Arab is one of the best known of these
can provoke an early pioneers, whose investigations
physician Avenzoar (Ibn Zuhr)
unconditioned response into the secretion of saliva during
performs experiments on (such as beginning to salivate).
animals in order to test digestion in dogs led him to some
surgical procedures. unexpected conclusions.
During the 1890s, Pavlov carried
1890 In Principles of out a series of experiments on dogs,
Psychology, William James If an unconditioned
stimulus is accompanied using various surgically implanted
states that in animals the by a neutral stimulus devices to measure the ow of
feeling of having executed (such as a ringing bell) saliva when these animals were
one impulsive step is an being fed. He noted that the dogs
indispensable part of the salivated not only when they were
stimulus of the next one. actually eating, but also whenever
a conditioned response they could just smell or see some
AFTER begins to develop. appetizing food. The dogs would
1920 John B. Watsons even salivate, in anticipation of
Little Albert experiment food being produced, when they
demonstrates classical were simply being approached by
conditioning in humans. one of their keepers.
After repeated episodes,
1930s B.F. Skinner shows the conditioned stimulus Pavlovs observations led him
that rats can be conditioned alone (the ringing bell) to investigate the links between
to behave in a specic way. various stimuli and the responses
they elicited. In one experiment,
1950s Psychotherapists he set off a clicking metronome
employ conditioning as will provoke a just before offering food to the
part of behavior therapy. conditioned response dogs, repeating this process until
(beginning to salivate). the animals always associated the
sound with a good meal. This
See also: William James 3845 John B. Watson 6671 B.F. Skinner 7885 Stanley Schachter 338

stimulus (bell, buzzer, or light) with pain or some form of threat

and food had been established, and began to elicit a conditioned
the dogs would respond to the response of fear or anxiety.
stimulus by salivating. The principle of what is now
known as classical or Pavlovian
Conditioned response conditioning, as well as Pavlovs
Pavlov concluded that the food experimental method, marked a
offered to the dogs was an groundbreaking step in the
unconditioned stimulus (US), emergence of psychology as
because it led to an unlearned, or a truly scientic, rather than
unconditioned response (UR)in philosophical, discipline. Pavlovs
this case, salivation. The click of work was to be hugely inuential,
the metronome, however, only particularly on US behaviorist
Pavlovs dogs would salivate simply became a stimulus to salivation psychologists, such as John B.
at the sight of someone in a white lab after its association with food had Watson and B.F. Skinner.
coat. They had become conditioned been learned. Pavlov then called
to associate the coat with eating, as
this a conditioned stimulus (CS).
whoever fed them always wore one.
The salivation in response to the
metronome was also learned, so
conditioning eventually resulted was a conditioned response (CR).
in the dogs salivating in response In later experiments, Pavlov
to the click of the metronome alone. showed that conditioned responses Facts are the air of science.
In further experiments, Pavlov could be repressed, or unlearned, if Without them a man of
replaced the metronome with a the conditioned stimulus was given science can never rise.
bell or buzzer, a ashing light, and repeatedly without being followed Ivan Pavlov
whistles of different pitches. by food. He also demonstrated that
However, regardless of the nature a conditioned response could be
of the stimulus used, the result mental as well as physical, by
was the always same: once an carrying out experiments in which
association between the neutral various stimuli were associated

Ivan Pavlov Ivan Pavlov, the eldest son of a here that he carried out his
village priest in Ryazan, Russia, famous research into the
was initially destined to follow in digestive secretions of dogs,
his fathers footsteps. However, he which won him the Nobel Prize
quickly abandoned his training at in 1904. Pavlov retired ofcially
a local seminary, transferring in 1925, but continued his
to the University of St. Petersburg experiments until his death from
to study natural science. After pneumonia in February 1936.
graduation in 1875, he enrolled at
the Academy of Medical Surgery, Key works
where he gained a doctorate and
later a fellowship. In 1890, Pavlov 1897 Lectures on the Work of
became a professor at the Military the Principal Digestive Glands
Medical Academy, and was also 1928 Lectures on Conditioned
made director of the physiology Reexes
department at the Institute of 1941 Conditioned Reexes
Experimental Medicine. It was and Psychiatry


1885 In his book On Memory,
Hermann Ebbinghaus
describes the forgetting
curvethe rate at which
human memories fade.

1890s Ivan Pavlov establishes
the principle of classical

EDWARD THORNDIKE (18741949) 1918 John B. Watsons Little

Albert experiments apply
conditioning to a human baby.
1923 English psychologist
Charles Spearman proposes
a single general factorthe
g factorin measurements
of human intelligence.
1930s B.F. Skinner develops
a theory of conditioning from

t much the same time as
Pavlov was conducting his
experiments on dogs in
Russia, Edward Thorndike began
researching animal behavior for
his doctoral thesis in the US.
He was perhaps the rst true
behaviorist psychologist,
although his research took place
long before the term was adopted.
Scientic psychology was
emerging as a fresh eld of study
in universities when Thorndike
graduated in the 1890s, and he
was attracted by the prospect of
applying this new science to his
interest in education and learning.
Thorndikes original intention had
been to study learning in humans,
See also: Hermann Ebbinghaus 4849 Ivan Pavlov 6061 John B. Watson 6671 Edward Tolman 7273

B.F. Skinner 7885 Donald Hebb 163 Hans Eysenck 31621

When an
animal responds
to a stimulus
Psychology helps to
measure the probability
that an aim is attainable.
Edward Thorndike
the outcome may the outcome may
be rewarding be protless
(such as escaping from (such as still being
a cage). trapped in a cage).

but when he was unable to obtain

a suitable subject for his research,
he turned his attention to animals,
with the aim of examining the
The connection between The connection between
processes of intelligence and
the action and the event the action and the event
learning through observation in is weakened.
is strengthened.
a series of controlled experiments.
Thorndikes results went much
further than this, however,
laying down the foundations
of behaviorist psychology.

Learning environments
Thorndikes rst studies were Rewarded responses are
of chicks learning to negotiate stamped in, while protless
mazes that he designed and built acts are stamped out.
specically for his experiments.
This later became a hallmark
of behaviorist experimental
techniquethe use of a specially
created environment in which a
subject is given specic stimuli or various devices, such as a loop of box each time; this indicated how
tasks, now known as instrumental string, or a ring, or a button or quickly the animal was learning
conditioning or instrumental panel to be pressed, only one of about its environment.
learning. As his research which would be connected to the The experiment was carried out
progressed, Thorndike turned his latch that would open the door of using several different cats, placing
attention to cats, inventing puzzle the box. In time, the cat would each one in a series of puzzle boxes
boxes to observe their ability to discover the device, which would that were opened by different
learn mechanisms for escape. allow it to escape and receive a devices. What Thorndike noticed
A hungry cat was locked inside reward of food. The process was was that although the cats had all
a puzzle box, and by exploring its repeated and it was noted how long discovered the escape mechanism
environment would come across it took for the cat to open the puzzle by trial and error in their rst
as a neural connection. When
stimulus-response sequences
are followed by an annoying or
unpleasant state of affairs (such
as continued imprisonment or
punishment), the neural connections
between the situation and response
are weakened, until eventually
protless acts are stamped out.
This focus on the outcome of a
stimulus and its response, and the
idea that the outcome could work
back to strengthen the stimulus-
response connection, is an example
of what would later be called a
reinforcement theory of learning.
Reinforcement, and the importance
of outcomes, was virtually ignored
by psychologists in the next
generation of behaviorists, such
The Law of Effect, proposed by Thorndike, forms
the foundation of all behaviorist psychology. He as John B. Watson, but the Law of
demonstrated that animals learn by forging links Effect brilliantly anticipated the
between actions and results, remembering more work of B.F. Skinner and his theory
positive outcomes and forgetting negative ones. of operant conditioning.
In later research, Thorndike
rened the Law of Effect to take
attempt, on successive occasions between a stimulus (S) and a into account other variables, such
the amount of trial and error response (R), a corresponding as the delay between response and
gradually decreased as the cats neural connection is made in the reward, the effect of repetition of a
learned which actions were going brain. He referred to his brand of task, and how quickly a task was
to be fruitless and which would S-R learning as connectionism, forgotten when it was not repeated.
lead to a reward. asserting that the connections From this, he derived his Law
made during learning are stamped of Exercise, which states that
The Law of Effect in the circuitry of the brain.
As a result of these experiments What Thorndike proposed was
Thorndike proposed his Law of that it is the outcome of an action
Effect, which states that a response that determines how strongly or
to a situation that results in a weakly the stimulus-response
satisfying outcome is more likely connection is stamped in; in the
to occur again in the future; and case of the puzzle boxes, whether The intellect, character, and
conversely, that a response to pulling a string or pushing a panel skill possessed by any man
a situation that results in an resulted in escape or frustration. are the product of certain
unsatisfying outcome is less likely In other words, when particular original tendencies and
to occur again. This was the rst stimulus-response sequences are the training which they
formal statement of an idea that lies followed by a satisfying or pleasant have received.
behind all behavorist psychology, state of affairs (such as escape or a Edward Thorndike
the connection between stimulus reward), those responses tend to
and response and its relevance become more rmly connected
to the process of learning and with the situation, so that, when it
behavior. Thorndike proposed recurs, they will be more likely to
that when a connection is made recur. They become stamped in
intelligence, never about animal
stupidity, he wrote. The fact that
his cats in puzzle boxes learned
gradually, rather than suddenly
gaining an insight into how to
escape, conrmed his theories.
The animals were forced to learn
by trial and error, because they
were unable to use reason to work
out the link between the door and
the operating handle.

Human intelligence
After the publication of Animal Edward Thorndike
Adult learners were once thought to Intelligence, Thorndike turned his
be less capable of retaining information attention to human intelligence. The son of a Methodist
than children. Thorndike showed that In his opinion, the most basic minister, Edward Thorndike
the only signicant difference was in was born in Williamsburg,
intelligence is characterized by
speed of learning, not memory. Massachusetts, USA, in 1874.
simple stimulus and response He graduated in sciences from
association, resulting in a neural Wesleyan University in 1895,
stimulus-response connections connection. The more intelligent proceeding to Harvard to
that are repeated are strengthened, an animal, the more capable it will study psychology under
while those that are not used again be of making such connections. William James. In 1897,
are weakened. Moreover, the rate Therefore, intelligence can be Thorndike moved to Columbia
at which connections strengthen dened in terms of the ability to University in New York City,
or weaken can vary. According form neural bonds, which is where he completed his
to Thorndike, the greater the dependent not only on genetic doctorate thesis in 1898.
satisfaction or discomfort, the factors, but also on experience. Thorndikes interest in
greater the strengthening or To nd a measurement of educational psychology led
weakening of the bond. human intelligence, Thorndike to a teaching post at the
Interestingly, although devised his CAVD (Completion, College for Women of Case
Western Reserve in Cleveland,
Thorndike was studying animal Arithmetic, Vocabulary, and
Ohio, but he returned to
behavior using what were to Directions) test. It became the
Columbia just a year later, in
become standard behaviorist model for all modern intelligence 1899, teaching there until his
methodsand authoring a book, tests, and assessed mechanical retirement in 1939. In 1912, his
Animal Intelligence (1911), which intelligence (understanding of how peers elected him President
was to become a classic of early things work), as well as abstract of the American Psychological
behaviorismhe considered intelligence (creative ability) and Association. Thorndike
himself primarily an educational social intelligence (interpersonal continued to research and
psychologist. He had originally skills). Thorndike was especially write until his death, aged 74,
intended to examine animal interested in how age might affect in Montrose, New York.
intelligence, not behavior. He learning, and also proposed a
wanted to show, for example, that theory of learning that remains at Key works
animals learned by simple trial the heart of educational psychology
and error rather than by using a to this day, a contribution that is 1905 The Elements of
faculty of insight, an idea that was perhaps what Thorndike would Psychology
1910 The Contribution of
prevalent in psychology at the time: have wished more than anything
Psychology to Education
In the rst place, most of the books else to be remembered for. However, 1911 Animal Intelligence
do not give us a psychology, but it is for his enormous inuence on 1927 The Measurement of
rather a eulogy of animals. They the behaviorist movement that Intelligence
have all been about animal Thorndike is most often lauded.
JOHN B. WATSON (18781958)

APPROACH Pavlov demonstrated that
Classical behaviorism The fundamental (unlearned)
animals can be taught
human emotions are fear,
behavioral responses
BEFORE rage, and love.
through conditioning.
1890s German-born biologist
Jacques Loeb (one of Watsons
professors) explains animal
behavior in purely physical-
chemical terms.
1890s The principle of
classical conditioning is
established by Ivan Pavlov
using experiments on dogs. These feelings can be Humans, too, can be
attached to objects through conditioned to produce
1905 Edward Thorndike stimulusresponse physical responses to
shows that animals learn conditioning. objects and events.
through achieving successful
outcomes from their behavior.
1932 Edward Tolman adds
cognition into behaviorism in
his theory of latent learning.
1950s Cognitive psychologists
Anyone, regardless
focus on understanding the People can be conditioned
to produce emotional
of their nature,
mental processes that both
responses to objects. can be trained
lie behind and produce
to be anything.
human behavior.

y the beginning of the 20th psychologists of the 20th century. Before Watsons research at Johns
century, many psychologists Through his work on the stimulus Hopkins University, in Baltimore,
had concluded that the response learning theory that had Maryland, the majority of
human mind could not be adequately been pioneered by Thorndike, he experiments on behavior had
studied through introspective became regarded as the founding concentrated on animal behavior,
methods, and were advocating a father of behaviorism, and he did with the results extrapolated to
switch to the study of the mind much to popularize the use of the human behavior. Watson himself
through the evidence of behavior in term. His 1913 lecture, Psychology studied rats and monkeys for his
controlled laboratory experiments. as the Behaviorist Views It, put doctorate but (perhaps inuenced
John Watson was not the rst forward the revolutionary idea that by his experience working with the
advocate of this thoroughgoing a truly scientic psychology would military during World War I) was
behaviorist approach, but he was abandon talk of mental states and keen to conduct experiments using
certainly the most conspicuous. instead focus on prediction and human subjects. He wanted to
In a career cut short by his marital control of behavior. This lecture study the stimulusresponse model
indelity, he became one of the became known to later psychologists of classical conditioning and how it
most inuential and controversial as the behaviorist manifesto. applied to the prediction and
See also: Ivan Pavlov 6061 Edward Thorndike 6265 Edward Tolman 7273 B.F. Skinner 7885

Joseph Wolpe 8687 Kenneth Clark 28283 Albert Bandura 28691

a local childrens hospital. The tests On a separate occasion, while

were designed to see whether it is Albert was sitting on the mattress,
possible to teach an infant to fear an Watson struck a metal bar with a
animal by repeatedly presenting it at hammer to make a sudden loud
the same time as a loud, frightening noise; unsurprisingly, Albert became
noise. Watson also wanted to nd frightened and distressed, bursting
Psychology, as the
out whether such a fear would into tears. Watson now had an
behaviorist views it, is a purely transfer to other animals or objects; unconditioned stimulus (the loud
objective experimental branch and how long this fear would noise) that he knew elicited a
of natural science. persist. Today, his methods would response of fear in the child. By
John B. Watson be considered unethical and even pairing this with the sight of the
cruel, but at the time they were seen rat, he hypothesized that he would
as a logical and natural progression be able to condition little Albert to
from previous animal studies. become afraid of the animal.
In the now famous Little Albert When Albert was just over 11
experiment, Watson placed the months old, Watson carried out the
healthy but on the whole stolid experiment. The white rat was
control of human behavior. He and unemotional baby Albert on placed on the mattress with Albert,
believed that people have three a mattress and then observed his then Watson hit the hammer on the
fundamental emotionsfear, rage, reactions when introduced to a dog, steel bar when the child touched
and loveand he wanted to nd a white rat, a rabbit, a monkey, and the rat. The child burst into tears.
out whether a person could be some inanimate objects, including This procedure was repeated seven
conditioned into feeling these in human masks and burning paper. times over two sessions, one week
response to a stimulus. Albert showed no fear of any of apart, after which Albert became
these animals or objects and even distressed as soon as the rat was
Little Albert reached out to touch them. In this brought into the room, even when it
With his research assistant, Rosalie way, Watson established a baseline was not accompanied by the noise.
Rayner, Watson began a series of from which he could measure any By repeatedly pairing the rat
experiments involving Albert B, change in the childs behavior with the loud noise, Watson was
a nine-month-old baby chosen from toward the objects. applying the same kind of classical

John B. Watson Born into a poor family in South during World War I, then
Carolina, John Broadus Watsons returned to Johns Hopkins.
childhood was unhappy; his father Forced to resign after an affair
was an alcoholic womanizer who with his research assistant,
left when Watson was 13, and his Rosalie Rayner, he turned to a
mother was devoutly religious. career in advertising while still
Watson became a rebellious and publishing books on psychology.
violent teenager, but was a brilliant After Rayners death in 1935
scholar, attending nearby Furman aged 37, he became a recluse.
University at the age of 16.
After gaining a PhD from the Key works
University of Chicago, he became
associate professor at Johns 1913 Psychology as the
Hopkins University, where his Behaviorist Views It
1913 lecture became known as 1920 Conditioned Emotional
the behaviorist manifesto. He Reactions (with Rosalie Rayner)
worked briey for the military 1924 Behaviorism
conditioning as Pavlov had in his conditioning. This was a new mothers distress, but according to
experiments with dogs. The childs nding, because previous stimulus Watson and Rayners own account,
natural response to the noisefear response experiments had focused it occurred on a prearranged date.
and distresshad now become on testing the learning of physical
associated with the rat. The child behaviors. Watson had discovered Innitely malleable
had become conditioned to respond that not only can human behavior Watsons career was abruptly
to the rat with fear. In terms of be predictedgiven certain stimuli brought to an end shortly after the
classical conditioning, the rat was and conditionsit can also be Little Albert experiments when he
initially a neutral stimulus eliciting controlled and modied. A further was forced to resign his professorship
no particular response; the loud check of Alberts reactions to the amid the scandal of his affair with
noise was an unconditioned rat, rabbit, and dog one month later his researcher, Rosalie Rayner.
stimulus (US) that elicited an suggested that the effects of this Despite the incompleteness of his
unconditioned response (UR) of conditioning were long-lasting, but research, Watson felt vindicated in
fear. After conditioning, the rat had this could not be proven as Albert his belief in behaviorism, and more
become a conditioned stimulus was soon after removed from the particularly the application
(CS), eliciting the conditioned hospital by his mother. It has been of classical stimulusresponse
response (CR) of fear. suggested that this was a sign of the conditioning to humans. Perhaps
However, this conditioning
seemed to go deeper than simply a
fear of the white rat, and appeared
to be far from temporary. In order Doctor
to test whether Alberts fear had
generalized, or spread to other,
similar objects, he was reintroduced
to white furry thingsincluding
a rabbit, a dog, and a sheepskin
coatve days after the original
conditioning. Albert showed the
same distressed and fearful
response to these as to the rat.
In these experiments, Watson
demonstrated that human emotions
are susceptible to classical

I shall never be
satised until I have
a laboratory in which Artist
I can bring up
children under
constant observation. Writer
Watson saw the child
John B. Watson as the ultimate blank
slate. He claimed that
behaviorist principles
could be used to mold
children into any kind of
specialist, from artist to
doctor, regardless of nature.
because of his forced ejection from The popularity of his books as
the academic world (into advertising, childcare bibles meant that a
where he was hugely successful) he whole generation was affected by
developed a tendency to overstate what can now be seen as a
the scope of his ndings, and with dysfunctional upbringing. Even
a natural gift for self-publicity Watsons own family suffered:
Watsonism has become
continued to publish books on Rosalie eventually saw the aws
the subject of psychology.
gospel and catechism in the in her husbands child-rearing
Not content, for example, to
nurseries and drawing theories and wrote a critical article
claim that it is possible to condition rooms of America. for Parents Magazine entitled I
emotional responses, he boasted Mortimer Adler Am the Mother of a Behaviorists
that on the same principle it would Sons, and Watsons granddaughter,
be possible to control or modify the actor Mariette Hartley, gave an
almost any aspect of human account of her disturbed family
behavior, no matter how complex. background in her autobiographical
Just as Little Albert had been book Breaking the Silence.
conditioned to fear certain white Alternative approaches to
furry objects against his natural it is easy to see that his approach, childcare soon appeared, even
inclination, Watson believed that based on extreme emotional among committed behaviorists.
Anyone, regardless of their nature, detachment, was at best misguided While accepting the basic principle
can be trained to be anything. and potentially damaging, but his of conditioning established by
He even boasted in his 1924 book methods were adopted by millions Watson (despite the dubious ethics
Behaviorism: Give me a dozen of parents, including Watson and of the Little Albert experiment),
healthy infants, well-formed, and my Rosalie Rayner themselves. and using that as a starting point
own specied world to bring them The child, Watson believed, is for his own radical behaviorism,
up in and Ill guarantee to take any shaped by its environment, and the psychologist B.F. Skinner was
one at random and train him to that environment is controlled by to apply behaviorism to the
become any type of specialist I the parents. In essence, he saw business of childcare in a much
might selectdoctor, lawyer, artist, child-raising as an objective exercise more benign (if eccentric) manner.
merchant-chief, and, yes, even in behavior modication, especially
beggar-man and thief, regardless of of the emotions of fear, rage, and
his talents, penchants, tendencies, love. Perhaps understandably, given
abilities, vocations, and race of his his own unhappy childhood, he
ancestors. In the nature versus dismissed affection as sentimental,
nurture debate, Watson was rmly leading to over-dependence of the
on the side of nurture. child on the parent. But he also
advised against the opposite
Unemotional parenting emotional extreme and was an
Unable to continue his university opponent of physical punishment.
research, Watson popularized his Watsons questionable application
ideas on behaviorism by turning of stimulusresponse conditioning
his attention to the business of to childcare eventually drew
childcare. It was in this that his criticism. Later generations viewed
views proved to be most publicly the approach as manipulative and
inuential, and eventually most uncaring, with an emphasis on
controversial. Predictably, he efciency and results rather than
advocated a strictly behaviorist on the wellbeing of the child. The
Watson applied his understanding
approach to bringing up children, long-term damage to children of human behavior to advertising in the
and throughout the 1920s and 30s brought up according to Watsons 1920s, demonstrating that people can
his many books on childcare became behaviorist model became apparent be inuenced into buying products
immensely popular. In retrospect, only gradually, but was signicant. through their image, not content.

EDWARD TOLMAN (18861959)

lthough considered one of mental processes, including
IN CONTEXT the leading gures of US perception, cognition, and
behaviorist psychology, motivation, which he had
Edward Tolman took a very encountered while studying
Cognitive (purposive)
different approach from that of Gestalt psychology in Germany.
Thorndike and Watson. He agreed By bridging these two previously
BEFORE with the basic methodology of separate approaches, he developed
1890s Ivan Pavlovs behaviorismthat psychology a new theory about the role of
experiments with dogs could only be studied by objective, conditioning, and created what he
establish the theory of scientic experimentsbut was called purposive behaviorism,
classical conditioning. also interested in ideas about now called cognitive behaviorism.

1920 John B. Watson conducts

behaviorist experiments on
humans, notably Little Albert.
As a rat explores a it builds up a
AFTER maze cognitive map of
1938 B.F. Skinners research the area
into operant conditioning uses
pigeons in place of rats, and
becomes more sophisticated.
Humans create a
1950s Cognitive psychology cognitive map of
replaces behaviorism as the their environment,
dominant movement in which is like a
psychology. God-given maze.
1980s Joseph Wolpes
behavioral therapy and
Aaron Becks cognitive
therapy merge into cognitive
behavioral therapy. Humans think in a which can be used
similar way to rats. to reach a goal.
See also: Ivan Pavlov 60 61 Edward Thorndike 62 65 John B. Watson 66 71 B.F. Skinner 78 85 Joseph Wolpe
86 87 Wolfgang Khler 160 61 Daniel Kahneman 193

were only rewarded after six days, route. Further experiments showed
and a third group rewarded after that the rats learned a sense of
two days, Tolmans ideas were location rather than merely the turns
conrmed. The second and third required to reach a particular place.
groups made fewer errors when In Purposive Behavior in Animals
There is more than one running the maze the day after and Men, Tolman outlined his theory
kind of learning. they had been rewarded with food, of latent learning and cognitive
Edward Tolman demonstrating that they already maps, bringing together the
knew their way around the maze, methodology of behaviorism with
having learned it prior to receiving Gestalt psychology, and introducing
rewards. Once rewards were on the element of cognition.
offer, they were able to use the
cognitive map they had built in
order to negotiate the maze faster.
Tolman questioned the basic
premise of conditioned learning Latent learning
(that behavior was learned simply Tolman referred to the rats initial
by an automatic response to a learning period, where there was no
stimulus). He believed that animals obvious reward, as latent learning.
could learn about the world around He believed that as all animals,
them without the reinforcement including humans, go about their
of a reward, and later use that daily lives, they build up a cognitive
knowledge in decision-making. map of the world around themthe
He designed a series of God-given mazewhich they can
experiments using rats in mazes to apply to locate specic goals. He
examine the role of reinforcement gave the example of how we learn
A cognitive map of our surroundings
in learning. Comparing a group of the locations of various landmarks develops in the course of our daily
rats that were rewarded with food on our daily journeys, but only realize lives. We may not be aware of this
daily for successfully negotiating what we have learned when we until we need to nd somewhere that
the maze, with another group who need to nd somewhere along the we have passed without noticing.

Edward Tolman Edward Chace Tolman was born here that he experimented
into a well-to-do family in West with rats in mazes. During
Newton, Massachusetts. the McCarthy period, he was
He studied at the Massachusetts threatened with dismissal for
Institute of Technology, graduating not signing a loyalty oath that
in electrochemistry in 1911, but he felt restricted academic
after reading works by William freedom. The case was
James opted for a postgraduate overturned in 1955. He died in
degree at Harvard in philosophy Berkeley, aged 73, in 1959.
and psychology. While studying,
he traveled to Germany and was Key works
introduced to Gestalt psychology.
After gaining his doctorate, he 1932 Purposive Behavior in
taught at Northwestern University, Animals and Men
but his pacist views lost him his 1942 Drives Toward War
job, and he moved to the University 1948 Cognitive Maps in Rats
of California at Berkeley. It was and Men


EDWIN GUTHRIE (18861959)

y the 1920s, when American way, Guthrie said, once a rat has
IN CONTEXT philosopher Edwin Guthrie discovered a source of food, it knows
turned his attention to where to come when it is hungry.
psychology, the stimulusresponse Guthrie expanded his idea into
Learning theory
model of learning formed the basis a theory of contiguity, stating that
BEFORE of almost all behaviorist theories. a combination of stimuli, which
1890s Ivan Pavlov shows Derived from Ivan Pavlovs idea of has accompanied a movement, will
classical conditioning in dogs. classical conditioning, it claimed on its reoccurrence tend to be
that repeatedly exposing subjects followed by that movement.
1890S Edward Thorndike to particular stimuli combinations A movement, not behavior, is
designs the puzzle box for (such as being given food and learned from stimulusresponse
his experiments on cats. ringing a bell) could eventually association. Related movements
1920S Edward Tolman queries provoke conditioned responses (such combine to form an act; repetition
the role of reinforcement in as salivating when a bell is rung). does not reinforce the association
Although Guthrie was a strict but leads to the formation of acts,
behaviorist, he did not agree that which combine to form behavior.
AFTER conditioning needed reinforcement
1938 B.F. Skinners The to be successful. He believed that a
Behavior of Organisms presents full association between a specic
the idea of operant conditioning, stimulus and response is made in
emphasizing the role of their very rst pairing. Guthries
consequences in behavior. theory of one-trial learning was
based on a study in which he We expect one quarrel
1940s Jean Piaget develops a observed cats trapped in puzzle to change attitudes.
theory of learning that claims boxes. The cats, once they had Edwin Guthrie
children are naturally driven to discovered the mechanism for
explore and acquire knowledge. escape, made the association
1977 Albert Banduras Social between escape and their action,
Learning Theory states that which they would then repeat on
subsequent occasions. In the same
behavior is learned from
observing and copying the
See also: Ivan Pavlov 6061 Edward Thorndike 6265 Edward Tolman 7273
behavior of others. B.F. Skinner 7885 Jean Piaget 26269 Albert Bandura 28691

ZING-YANG KUO (18981970)

n the 1920s, behaviorist John
IN CONTEXT B. Watson was claiming that
even innate behavior could be
altered by conditioning. But it was
Behavioral epigenetics
the Chinese psychologist
BEFORE Zing-Yang Kuo who took the
1874 Francis Galton addresses behaviorist idea to its extreme,
the naturenurture controversy denying the existence of instinct
in English Men of Science: as an explanation for behavior.
Their Nature and Nurture. Kuo felt that instinct was just
a convenient way for psychologists
1924 John B. Watson makes to explain behavior that did not
his famous dozen infants t current theory: Our behavior Harmonious relationships, Kuo
boast that anyone, regardless researches in the past have been proved, can exist between animals that
of their basic nature, can be in the wrong direction, because, are traditionally regarded as enemies.
trained to be anything. instead of nding how we could He concluded that there is no innate
mechanism driving them to ght.
build nature into the animal, we
AFTER have tried to nd nature in the
1938 B.F. Skinner in The animal. Kuos most well-known Kuos work was cut short by political
Behavior of Organisms explains experiments involved rearing events in China, which forced him
his radical behaviorist ideas, kittenssome raised from birth in to ee rst to the US, then Hong
claiming that circumstances, cages with rats, others introduced Kong. His ideas only became known
not instinct, govern behavior. to rats at later stages. He found that in the West as behaviorism was
1942 Edward Tolman if a kitten was raised in the same beginning to wane and cognitive
publishes Drives Toward War, cage with a rat since it was very psychology was in the ascendant.
which examines whether young, it, when grown-up, became However, his theory of ongoing
aggression is conditioned tolerant of rats: not only would it development without innate
or instinctive. never attack a rat, but it adopted mechanisms was inuential as
the rat as its mate, played with it, a counter to the instinct-based
1966 Konrad Lorenz publishes and even became attached to it. psychology of Konrad Lorenz.
On Aggression, explaining
aggressive behavior as an See also: Francis Galton 2829 John B. Watson 6671 Edward Tolman 7273

innate response. Konrad Lorenz 77 B.F. Skinner 7885


KARL LASHLEY (18901958)

merican physiologist- mazes as the basis of a learning
IN CONTEXT turned-psychologist Karl experiment. First, the rats learned
Lashley was interested in to nd their way through the maze
what happens physically in the to reach a food reward. Then,
brain during the learning process. Lashley performed surgery on them
BEFORE Pavlov and other behaviorists had to remove specic but different
1861 French anatomist Paul suggested that conditioning causes parts of the cerebral cortex from
Broca locates the area of the chemical or electrical changes in each one. After this, the rats were
brain responsible for speech. the brain, and Lashley wanted to replaced in the maze to test their
pinpoint exactly what these were. memory and learning abilities.
1880s Spanish pathologist In particular, Lashley wanted to
and neuroscientist Santiago locate the memory trace, or No place for memory
Ramn y Cajal develops the engram, the specic place in the What Lashley found was that no
theory that the bodys nervous brain responsible for memory. Like matter which part of the brain he
system is made up of cells, many behaviorists, he used rats in removed, the rats memory of the
which German anatomist task remained. Their learning and
Heinrich Waldeyer-Hartz later retention of new tasks was impaired,
calls neurons. but the amount of impairment
depended on the extent, not the
AFTER location, of the damage. He came
1949 Donald Hebb describes to the conclusion that the memory
the formation of cell assemblies There is no great excess of trace is not localized in a particular
and phase sequences in the cells which can be reserved as place, but distributed evenly
process of associative learning. the seat of special memories. throughout the cerebral cortex; each
From 1980 Modern brain- Karl Lashley part of the brain is therefore equally
imaging techniques such as important, or equipotential. Decades
CT, fMRI (functional magnetic later, he said that his experiment
resonance imaging) and PET had led him to sometimes feel
that the necessary conclusion is
(positron emission tomography)
that learning is just not possible.
scanning allow neuroscientists
to map specic brain functions.
See also: John B. Watson 6671 Donald Hebb 163 George Armitage
Miller 16873 Daniel Schacter 20809 Roger Brown 237

KONRAD LORENZ (19031989)

he Austrian zoologist and Lorenz went on to observe many
IN CONTEXT doctor Konrad Lorenz was other stage-linked, instinctive
one of the founding fathers behaviors, such as courtship
of ethologythe comparative study behavior, and described them
of animal behavior in the natural as xed-action patterns. These
BEFORE environment. He began his work remain dormant until triggered by
1859 English biologist Charles observing geese and ducks at his a specic stimulus at a particular
Darwin publishes On the familys summer house in Altenberg, critical period. Fixed-action
Origin of Species, describing Austria. He noticed that the young patterns, he emphasized, are not
the theory of natural selection. birds rapidly made a bond with learned but genetically programed,
their mother after hatching, but and as such have evolved through
1898 Lorenzs mentor, German could also form the same attachment the process of natural selection.
biologist Oskar Heinroth, to a foster parent if the mother was
begins his study of duck absent. This phenomenon, which
and goose behavior, and Lorenz called imprinting, had
describes the phenomenon been observed before, but he was
of imprinting. the rst to study it systematically.
Famously, he even persuaded
AFTER young geese and ducks to accept
1959 Experiments by the him (by imprinting his Wellington
German psychologist Eckhard boots) as a foster parent.
Hess show that in imprinting, What distinguishes imprinting
what has been learned rst is from learning, Lorenz discovered, is
remembered best; whereas in that it happens only at a specic
association learning, recent stage in an animals development,
learning is remembered best. which he called the critical period.
Lorenz discovered that geese
1969 John Bowlby argues that Unlike learning, it is rapid, operates and other birds follow and become
the attachment of newborn independently of behavior, and attached to the rst moving object they
appears to be irreversible; imprinting encounter after emerging from their
babies to their mothers is a
cannot be forgotten. eggsin this case, his boots.
genetic predisposition.
See also: Francis Galton 2829 Ivan Pavlov 6061 Edward
Thorndike 6265 Karl Lashley 76 John Bowlby 27477
B.F. SKINNER (19041990)

urrhus Frederic Skinner,
IN CONTEXT better known as B.F.
Skinner, is possibly the
most widely known and inuential
Radical behaviorism
behaviorist psychologist. He
BEFORE was not, however, a pioneer in the
The ideal of behaviorism is
1890 William James outlines eld, but developed the ideas of his
predecessors, such as Ivan Pavlov
to eliminate coercion, to
the theories of behaviorism in apply controls by changing
The Principles of Psychology. and John B. Watson, by subjecting
theories of behaviorism to rigorous the environment.
1890s Ivan Pavlov develops experimental scrutiny in order to B.F. Skinner
the concept of conditioned arrive at his controversial stance
stimulus and response. of radical behaviorism.
Skinner proved to be an ideal
1924 John B. Watson lays the advocate of behaviorism. Not only
foundations for the modern were his arguments based on the
behaviorist movement. results of scrupulous scientic
1930s Zing-Yang Kuo claims methodology (so they could be theorizing of many of the early
that behavior is continually proved), but his experiments psychologists. Works by Pavlov
being modied throughout life, tended to involve the use of novel and Watson were his main
and that even so-called innate contraptions that the general public inuence; he saw psychology as
behavior is inuenced by found fascinating. Skinner was an following in the scientic tradition,
inveterate gadget man and a and anything that could not been
experiences as an embryo.
provocative self-publicist. But seen, measured, and repeated in a
AFTER behind the showman image was rigorously controlled experiment
1950s Joseph Wolpe pioneers a serious scientist, whose work was of no interest to him.
systematic desensitization as helped to nally sever psychology Processes purely of the mind,
part of behavior therapy. from its introspective philosophical therefore, were outside Skinners
roots and establish it as a scientic interest and scope. In fact, he
1960s Albert Banduras social discipline in its own right. reached the conclusion that they
learning theory is inuenced Skinner had once contemplated must be utterly subjective, and
by radical behaviorism. a career as an author, but he had did not exist at all separately from
little time for the philosophical the body. In Skinners opinion,

B.F. Skinner Burrhus Frederic Skinner was the rest of his life. He was
born in 1904 in Susquehanna, diagnosed with leukemia in
Pennsylvania. He studied English the 1980s, but continued to
at Hamilton College, New York, work, nishing an article from
intending to be a writer, but soon his nal lecture on the day he
realized that the literary life was died, August 18, 1990.
not for him. Inuenced by the
works of Ivan Pavlov and John B. Key works
Watson, he studied psychology at
Harvard, gaining his doctorate in 1938 The Behavior of Organisms:
1931 and becoming a junior fellow. An Experimental Analysis
He moved to the University of 1948 Walden Two
Minnesota in 1936, and from 1953 Science and Human
1946 to 1947 ran the psychology Behavior
department at Indiana University. 1957 Verbal Behavior
In 1948, Skinner returned to 1971 Beyond Freedom and
Harvard, where he remained for Dignity
See also: William James 3845 Ivan Pavlov 6061 John B. Watson 6671 Zing-Yang Kuo 75

Joseph Wolpe 8687 Albert Bandura 28691 Noam Chomsky 29497

press the bar accidentally, or

simply out of curiosity, and as a
An action, consequence receive some food.
such as a rat Over time, the rat learned that food
pressing a appeared whenever the bar was
button pressed, and began to press it
purposefully in order to be fed.
Comparing results from rats given
the positive reinforcement of food
for their bar-pressing behavior with
those that were not, or were
presented with food at different
rates, it became clear that when
food appeared as a consequence
leading to an has a of the rats actions, this inuenced
increased probability consequence, its future behavior.
of that behavior such as the Skinner concluded that animals
and encouraging a delivery of food are conditioned by the responses
repeat of the action. they receive from their actions
and environment. As the rats
explored the world around them,
some of their actions had a positive
consequence (Skinner was careful
the way to carry out psychological from the results of actions. As with to avoid the word reward with its
research was through observable so many great insights, this may connotations of being given for
behavior, rather than through appear to be self-evident, but it good behavior), which in turn
unobservable thoughts. marked a major turning point in encouraged them to repeat that
Although a strict behaviorist behaviorist psychology. behavior. In Skinners terms,
from the outset of his career, an organism" operates on its
Skinner differed from earlier Skinner boxes environment, and encounters a
behaviorists in his interpretation of While working as a research fellow
conditioning, in particular, the at Harvard, Skinner carried out a
principle of classical conditioning series of experiments on rats, using
as described by Pavlov. While not an invention that later became
disagreeing that a conditioned known as a Skinner box. A rat
response could be elicited by was placed in one of these boxes,
repeated training, Skinner felt that which had a special bar tted on
this was something of a special the inside. Every time the rat
case, involving the deliberate, pressed this bar, it was presented
articial introduction of a with a food pellet. The rate of
conditioning stimulus. bar-pressing was automatically
To Skinner, it seemed that recorded. Initially, the rat might
the consequences of an action
were more important in shaping
Skinner boxes were one of many
behavior than any stimulus that ingenious devices that the psychologist
had preceded or coincided with it. created, giving him total control over
He concluded from his experiments the environment of the animals whose
that behavior is primarily learned behavior he was observing.
Positive reinforcement can stimulate particular patterns
of behavior, as Skinner demonstrated by placing a rat in
one of his specially designed boxes, tted with a lever or bar.
Pellets of food appeared every time the animal pressed the
bar, encouraging it to perform this action again and again.

stimulus (a food pellet), which occurring, if the reinforcing shock as punishment, a distinction
reinforces its operant behavior stimulus was then stopped, there that became increasingly important
(pressing on the bar). In order to was a decrease in the likelihood of as he examined the implications of
distinguish this from classical that behavior occurring. his research.
conditioning, he coined the term Skinner continued making his Negative reinforcement was not
operant conditioning; the major experiments ever more varied and a new concept in psychology. As
distinction being that operant sophisticated, including changes of early as 1890, William James had
conditioning depends not on a schedule to establish whether the written in Principles of Psychology:
preceding stimulus, but on what rats could distinguish and respond Animals, for example, awaken in
follows as a consequence of a to differences in the rate of delivery a child the opposite impulses of
particular type of behavior. It is also of food pellets. As he suspected, fearing and fondling. But if a child,
different in that it represents the rats adapted very quickly to in his rst attempts to pat a dog,
a two-way process, in which an the new schedules. gets snapped at or bitten, so that
action, or behavior, is operating the impulse of fear is strongly
on the environment just as much Negative reinforcement aroused, it may be that for years to
as the environment is shaping In later experiments, the oors of come no dog will excite in him the
that behavior. the Skinner boxes were each tted
In the course of his experiments, with an electric grid, which would
Skinner began to run short of food give the rats an unpleasant shock
pellets, forcing him to reschedule whenever they were activated. This
the rate at which they were being allowed for the investigation of the
given to the rats. Some rats now effect of negative reinforcement on
received a food pellet only after behavior. Again, just as Skinner
they had pressed the bar a number avoided the word reward, he was
of times repeatedly, either at xed careful not to describe the electric
intervals or randomly. The results of
this variation reinforced Skinners
Winning at gambling often boosts
original ndings, but they also led the compulsion to try again, while
to a further discovery: that while losing lessens it, just as changes in the
a reinforcing stimulus led to a rate at which Skinners rats were fed
greater probability of a behavior made them modify their behavior.
impulse to fondle again. Skinner
was to provide the experimental
evidence for this idea.

Positive reinforcement
As expected, Skinner found that
whenever a behavior resulted in the
negative consequence of an electric
shock, there was a decrease in that
behavior. He went on to redesign
the Skinner boxes used in the
experiment, so that the rats inside
were able to switch off the
electried grid by pressing a bar,
which provided a form of positive
reinforcement arising from the
removal of a negative stimulus. The
results that followed conrmed
Skinners theoryif a behavior
leads to the removal of a negative likely to avoid doing so when adults Skinners pigeon experiments proved
stimulus, that behavior increases. are around. The child may modify that the positive reinforcement of being
However, the results also his behavior, but only so far as it fed on the achievement of a task helped
to speed up and reinforce the learning
revealed an interesting distinction enables him to avoid punishment.
of new behavior patterns.
between behavior learned by Skinner himself believed that
positive reinforcement and behavior ultimately all forms of punishment
elicited by negative stimuli. The were unsuitable for controlling further in his article The Selection
rats responded better and more childrens behavior. by Consequences, written for the
quickly to the positive stimuli (as journal Science in 1981.
well as the removal of negative Genetic predisposition In 1936, Skinner took up a post
stimuli), than when their behavior The shaping of behavior by at the University of Minnesota,
resulted in a negative response. operant conditioning has striking where he continued to rene his
While still careful to avoid the parallels with Charles Darwins experimental research in operant
notions of reward and theory of natural selectionin conditioning and to explore
punishment, Skinner concluded essence, that only organisms practical applications for his ideas,
that behavior was shaped much suited by their genetic make-up this time using pigeons instead of
more efciently by a program to a particular environment will rats. With the pigeons, Skinner
of positive reinforcement. In fact, survive to reproduce, ensuring found that he was able to devise
he came to believe that negative the success of their species. more subtle experiments. Using
reinforcement could even be The likelihood of a rat behaving what he described as a method of
counter-productive, with the in a way that will result in a successive approximations, he
subject continuing to seek positive reinforcing stimulus, triggering could elicit and investigate more
responses for a specic behavior, the process of operant conditioning, complex patterns of behavior.
despite this leading to a negative is dependent on the level of its Skinner gave the pigeons
response in the majority of cases. curiosity and intelligence, both of positive reinforcement for any
This has implications in various which are determined by genetic behavior that was similar to that he
areas of human behavior too; for make-up. It was this combination was trying to elicit. For example, if
example, in the use of disciplinary of predisposition and conditioning he was trying to train a pigeon to
measures to teach children. If a that led Skinner to conclude that y in a circle clockwise, food would
boy is continually being punished a persons behavior is controlled by be given for any movement the
for something he nds enjoyable, his genetic and environmental pigeon made to the right, however
such as picking his nose, he is historiesan idea that he explored small. Once this behavior had
been established, the food was only the end. Although it only achieved
given for longer ights to the right, limited approval at the time, the
and the process was repeated until principles embodied in Skinners
the pigeon had to y a full circle in teaching machine resurfaced
order to receive some food. decades later in self-education
computer programs.
The objection to inner
Teaching program It has to be said that many of
Skinners research led him to Skinners inventions were
states is not that they do
question teaching methods used misunderstood at the time, and
not exist, but that they are
in schools. In the 1950s, when his gained him a reputation as an not relevant in a
own children were involved in eccentric. His baby tender, functional analysis.
formal education, students were for example, was designed as a B.F. Skinner
often given long tasks that involved crib alternative to keep his infant
several stages, and usually had to daughter in a controlled, warm, and
wait until the teacher had graded draft-free environment. However,
work carried out over the entire the public confused it with a
project before nding out how well Skinner box, and it was dubbed
they had done. This approach ran the heir conditioner by the press,
contrary to Skinners ndings about amid rumors that Skinner was guidance systems were yet to be
the process of learning and, in his experimenting on his own children. invented, so Skinner devised a nose
opinion, was holding back progress. Nevertheless, the baby tender cone that could be attached to a
In response, Skinner developed a attracted publicity, and Skinner bomb and steered by three pigeons
teaching program that gave was never shy of the limelight. placed inside it. The birds had been
incremental feedback at every trained, using operant conditioning,
stage of a projecta process that War effort to peck at an image of the bombs
was later incorporated into a Yet another famous experiment target, which was projected into
number of educational systems. He called Project Pigeon was met the nose cone via a lens at the front.
also invented a teaching machine with skepticism and some derision. This pecking controlled the ight-
that gave a student encouraging This practical application of path of the missile. The National
feedback for correct answers given Skinners work with pigeons was Defense Research Committee
at every stage of a long series of intended as a serious contribution helped fund the project, but it was
test questions, rather than just at to the war effort in 1944. Missile never used in combat, because it
was considered too eccentric and
impractical. The suspicion was
that Skinner, with his passion for
gadgets, was more interested in the
invention than in its application.
When asked if he thought it right
to involve animals in warfare, he
replied that he thought it was
wrong to involve humans.
In later life as an academic at
Harvard, Skinner also expanded
on the implications of his ndings
in numerous articles and books.

Praise or encouragement given at

frequent intervals during the progress
of a piece of work, rather than one large
reward at the end, has been shown to
boost the rate at which children learn.
Walden Two (1948) describes a falls from heaven, he ends in hell.
utopian society based on behavior And what does he say to reassure
learned with operant conditioning. himself? Here, at least, we shall
The books vision of social control be free. And that, I think, is the
achieved by positive reinforcement fate of the old-fashioned liberal.
caused controversy, and despite Hes going to be free, but hes
Skinner has an
its benign intent was criticized by going to nd himself in hell.
many as totalitarian. This was not Views such as these gained
unbounded love for the
a surprising reaction, given the him notoriety, and prompted some
idea that there are no
political climate in the aftermath of his ercest critics. In particular, individuals, no agents
of World War II. the application of his behaviorist there are only organisms.
ideas to the learning of language Thomas Szasz
Radical behaviorism in Verbal Behavior in 1957 received
Skinner remained true to his a scathing review from Noam
behaviorist approach, coining Chomsky, which is often credited
the term radical behaviorism as launching the movement known
for the branch of psychology he as cognitive psychology.
espoused. Although he did not Some criticism of Skinners
deny the existence of thought work, however, has been based on was a two-way process, in which
processes and mental states, he misunderstanding the principles an organism operates on its
believed that psychology should of operant conditioning. Radical environment and that environment
be concerned solely with the study behaviorism has often been responds, with the consequence
of physical responses to prevailing linked erroneously to the European often shaping future behavior.
conditions or situations. philosophical movement of logical In the 1960s, the focus in
In his book, Beyond Freedom positivism, which holds the view psychology swung away from
and Dignity, Skinner took the that statements or ideas are only the study of behavior to the
concept of shaping behavior meaningful if they can be veried study of mental processes, and
even further, resurrecting the by actual experience. But it has in for a time Skinners ideas were
philosophical debate between fact much more in common with discredited, or at least ignored.
free will and determinism. For the American pragmatism, which A reappraisal of behaviorism soon
radical behaviorist Skinner, free measures the importance or value followed, however, and his work
will is an illusion; selection by of actions according to their found an appreciative audience in
consequences controls all of our consequences. It has also been many areas of applied psychology,
behavior, and hence our lives. misinterpreted as presenting all especially among educationalists
Attempts to escape this notion living beings as the passive and clinical psychologiststhe
are doomed to failure and chaos. subjects of conditioning, whereas approach of cognitive behavioral
As he put it: When Miltons Satan to Skinner operant conditioning therapy owes much to his ideas.

Classical conditioning creates an

+ = automatic behavioral response to a
neutral stimulus, such as salivating in
expectation of food when a bell is rung.

Operant conditioning creates a

+ = higher probability of repeated behavior
through positive reinforcement, such as
releasing food by pulling a lever.

JOSEPH WOLPE (19151997)

According to Pavlov and
APPROACH Watson, it is possible to People cannot feel
Reciprocal inhibition learn an emotional two opposing emotions
response to a particular at the same time.
BEFORE stimulus.
1906 Ivan Pavlov publishes
the rst studies on stimulus-
response techniques, showing
that behavior can be learned
through conditioning. So it must also be possible
to unlearn a response to If someone is relaxed, they
1913 John B. Watson cannot also be anxious.
a stimulus.
publishes Psychology as
a Behaviorist Views It,
establishing the basic tenets
of behavioral psychology.
1920 John B. Watsons If deep relaxation is taught as a conditioned
Little Albert experiments response to a feared object, anxiety cannot be
demonstrate that emotions felt at the same time.
can be classically conditioned.
1953 B.F. Skinner publishes
The Behavior of Organisms,

presenting his theories on how or most of the rst half of the thoughts, including their formative
20th century, psychotherapy experiences. But South African-
human behavior relates to
was dominated by Freudian born psychiatrist Joseph Wolpe had
biology and the environment.
psychoanalysis, which assumes treated soldiers for anxiety brought
AFTER that anxiety results from conicting on by post-traumatic stress
1961 Wolpe introduces the forces deep within the psyche. disorder (then known as war
concept of systematic This conict can only be alleviated neurosis) during World War II, and
desensitization. through a lengthy, introspective had found these psychotherapeutic
analysis of both the individuals practices ineffective in helping his
conscious and subconscious patients. Talking to these men
See also: Ivan Pavlov 6061 John B. Watson 6671 B.F. Skinner 7885 Aaron Beck 17477 W.H.R. Rivers 334

deep-muscle relaxation techniques,

which he went on to pair with
simultaneous exposure to
some form of anxiety-inducing
stimulia technique that became
known as reciprocal inhibition.
Behavior depends upon Wolpes patients were asked
the paths that neural to imagine the thing or event that
excitation takes. they found disturbing. If they
Joseph Wolpe started to become anxious, they
would be encouraged to stop
imagining the scene and relax.
This approach gradually blocked
out a patients feelings of fear. Just
as the patient had previously been
conditioned by his experiences to
about their experiences did not become anxious when recalling
stop their ashbacks to the original certain particularly harrowing Phobias such as fear of mice have
trauma, nor did it end their anxiety. memories, he now became been treated successfully using methods
conditionedwithin a very short developed from Wolpes idea of reciprocal
Unlearning fear timeto block out his anxiety inhibition: the pairing of deep relaxation
with exposure to the feared object.
Wolpe believed that there must be response, by focusing on the
a simpler and quicker way than directly contradictory feeling of
psychoanalysis to address the being totally relaxed. results, and led to many important
problem of deep anxiety. He was Wolpes reciprocal inhibition new techniques in the eld of
aware of the work of behaviorists succeeded in reconditioning the behavioral therapy. Wolpe himself
such as Ivan Pavlov and John brain by focusing solely on symptoms used it to develop a systematic
Watson, who had successfully and current behavior, without any desensitization program to cure
taught animals and children new analysis of a patients past. It was phobias, such as fear of mice or
behavioral patterns through also effective and brought fast ying, which is still widely used.
stimulus-response training, or
classical conditioning. They had Joseph Wolpe he taught at the University
been able to make a previously of Virginia, then became a
unfelt emotional response to an Joseph Wolpe was born in professor of psychiatry at
object or event become automatic. Johannesburg, South Africa. Temple University, Philadelphia,
Wolpe reasoned that if behavior He studied medicine at the where he set up a respected
could be learned in this way, University of Witwatersrand, behavioral therapy institute.
it could also be unlearned, and he then served in the South African Renowned as a brilliant teacher,
proposed to nd a method of using Army, where he treated people Wolpe continued to teach until
this to help disturbed war veterans. for war neurosis. Returning he died of lung cancer, aged 82.
Wolpe had discovered that a to the university to develop his
human being is not capable of desensitization technique, he was Key works
ridiculed by the psychoanalytic
experiencing two contradictory
establishment for attempting to 1958 Psychotherapy by
states of emotion at the same time. treat neuroses without rst Reciprocal Inhibition
It is not possible, for example, to identifying their cause. Wolpe 1969 Practice of Behavioral
feel great anxiety of any kind, when relocated to the US in 1960, Therapy
you are feeling very relaxed. This taking US citizenship. Initially, 1988 Life Without Fear
inspired him to teach his patients

In his book Karen Horneys

Sigmund Freud Psychological Types, differences with Freud
and Josef Breuer Carl Jung introduces Anna Freud publishes lead her to establish the
publish Studies on the terms introvert The Ego and the American Institute for
Hysteria. and extrovert. Mechanisms of Defense. Psychoanalysis.

1895 1921 1936 1941

1900 1927 1937 1941

Sigmund Freud introduces Alfred Adler is Jacques Lacan delivers Erich Fromm writes
the key concepts of recognized as the founder his paper The Mirror one of the seminal
psychoanalysis in The of individual psychology Stage to the 14th works of sociopolitical
Interpretation of Dreams. following the publication of International psychology, The Fear
The Practice and Theory of Psychoanalytical of Freedom.
Individual Psychology. Congress.

t the turn of the 20th that he felt was key to our behavior. Despite these differences of
century, behaviorism was Freud believed that accessing the opinion, however, Freuds basic
becoming the dominant unconscious by talking to his ideas were modied rather than
approach to psychology in the US; patients would bring painful, rejected by the next generation of
psychologists in Europe, however, hidden memories into conscious psychoanalysts, and subsequent
were taking a different direction. awareness where the patient could theories place the emphasis on
This was largely due to the work make sense of them, and so gain different areas. Erik Erikson, for
of Sigmund Freud, whose theories relief from their symptoms. example, took a more social and
focused on psychopathology and developmental approach, while
treatment rather than the study New psychotherapies Jung was to formulate the idea
of mental processes and behavior. Freuds ideas spread across Europe of a collective unconscious.
Unlike behaviorism, his ideas were and the US. He attracted a circle at For the rst half of the 20th
based on observation and case his Vienna Psychoanalytic Society, century, psychoanalysis in its
histories rather than experimental which included Alfred Adler and various forms remained the main
evidence. Carl Jung. However, both these alternative to behaviorism, and it
Freud had worked with the men came to disagree with faced no serious challenges until
French neurologist Jean Martin elements of Freuds theories, going after World War II. In the 1950s,
Charcot, and was much inuenced on to develop their own distinct Freudian psychotherapy was still
by the latters use of hypnosis for psychodynamic approaches based practiced by therapists, especially
the treatment of hysteria. From his on Freuds groundwork. Well-known in France by Jacques Lacan and
time with Charcot, Freud realized therapists Melanie Klein and Karen his followers, but new therapies
the importance of the unconscious, Horney, and even Freuds daughter appeared that sought to bring
an area of nonconscious thought Anna, also broke away from Freud. about genuine change in patients

Carl Rogers develops

client-centered Melanie Klein presents a Albert Ellis outlines
therapy, outlining controversial paper on Envy Rational Emotive American existential
his theories in and Gratitude, afrming the Behavior Therapy psychology emerges
Counseling and innate presence of the in A Guide to with the publication of
Psychotherapy. death instinct. Rational Living. Rollo Mays Existence.

1942 1955 1961 1967

1946 1959 1964 1970

After his release from R.D. Laing attempts to Virginia Satir, the Abraham Maslow
Auschwitz, Viktor Frankl describe the structure of mother of family denes the concept of
writes Mans Search for the schizophrenic system therapy, self-actualization
Meaning, outlining the experience in The publishes Conjoint in Motivation and
necessity of nding Divided Self. Family Therapy. Personality.
meaning in suffering.

lives. The somewhat eclectic Perhaps the most signicant threat such as Albert Elliss Rational
Gestalt therapy was developed to psychoanalysis at this time Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT)
by Fritz and Laura Perls and Paul came from cognitive psychology, and Aaron Becks cognitive therapy.
Goodman, while existential which criticized psychoanalysis Freuds emphasis on childhood
philosophy inspired psychologists for its lack of objective evidence development and personal history
such as Viktor Frankl and Erich either for its theories or its efcacy inspired much developmental and
Fromm, who gave therapy a as treatment. In contrast, cognitive social psychology, and in the late
more sociopolitical agenda. psychology provided scientically 20th century psychotherapists such
Most importantly, a group of proven theories and, later, clinically as Guy Corneau, Virginia Satir, and
psychologists keen to explore a more effective therapeutic practices. Donald Winnicott turned their
humanistic approach held a series attention to the family environment;
of meetings in the US in the late Cognitive psychotherapy while others, including Timothy
1950s, setting out a framework for Cognitive psychologists dismissed Leary and Dorothy Rowe, focused
an association known as the third psychoanalysis as unscientic and on social pressures.
force, which was dedicated to its theories as unprovable. One of Though Freuds original ideas
exploring themes such as self- the key concepts of Freudian have often been questioned over the
actualization, creativity, and analysisrepressed memorywas years, the evolution from Freudian
personal freedom. Its founders questioned by Paul Watzlawick, psychoanalysis to cognitive therapy
including Abraham Maslow, Carl and the validity of all forms of and humanistic psychotherapy has
Rogers, and Rollo Maystressed memory was shown to be unstable led to huge improvements in mental
the importance of mental health by Elizabeth Loftus. Cognitive health treatments; and has provided
as much as the treatment of psychology instead offered a model for the unconscious, our
mental disorders. evidence-based psychotherapies drives, and behavior.
SIGMUND FREUD (18561939)
activity that was too powerful, too
IN CONTEXT frightening, or too incomprehensible
for our conscious mind to be able
to incorporate. Freuds work on
the subject was pioneering. He
BEFORE described the structure of the mind
2500600 BCE The Hindu as formed of the conscious, the
Vedas describe consciousness unconscious, and the preconscious,
as an abstract, silent, and he popularized the idea of the
completely unied eld unconscious, introducing the
of consciousness. notion that it is the part of the
mind that denes and explains
1567 Swiss physician the workings behind our ability
Paracelsus provides the to think and experience.
rst medical description
of the unconscious. Hypnosis and hysteria
Freuds introduction to the world Anna O, actually Bertha Pappenheim,
1880s French neurologist of the unconscious came in 1885 was diagnosed with paralysis and
Jean-Martin Charcot uses when he came across the work hysteria. She was treated successfully,
hypnotism to treat hysteria of the French neurologist Jean- with what she described as a talking
and other abnormal cure, by physician Josef Breuer.
Martin Charcot, who seemed to be
mental conditions. successfully treating patients for
AFTER symptoms of mental illness using the case of Anna O, and is the rst
1913 John B. Watson hypnosis. Charcots view was instance of intensive psychotherapy
criticizes Freuds ideas of the that hysteria was a neurological as a treatment for mental illness.
disorder caused by abnormalities Breuer became Freuds friend
unconscious as unscientic
of the nervous system, and this and colleague, and together the
and not provable.
idea provided important new two developed and popularized a
1944 Carl Jung claims that possibilities for treatments. Freud method of psychological treatment
the presence of universal returned to Vienna, eager to use based on the idea that many forms
archetypes proves the this new knowledge, but struggled of mental illness (irrational fears,
existence of the unconscious. to nd a workable technique. anxiety, hysteria, imagined
He then encountered Joseph paralyses and pains, and certain
Breuer, a well-respected physician, types of paranoia) were the results

he unconscious is one who had found that he could greatly of traumatic experiences that had
of the most intriguing reduce the severity of one of his occurred in the patients past
concepts in psychology. patients symptoms of mental illness and were now hidden away from
It seems to contain all of our simply by asking her to describe consciousness. Through Freud and
experience of reality, although her fantasies and hallucinations. Breuers technique, outlined in the
it appears to be beyond our Breuer began using hypnosis to jointly published Studies in
awareness or control. It is the place facilitate her access to memories of Hysteria (1895), they claimed to
where we retain all our memories, a traumatic event, and after twice- have found a way to release the
thoughts, and feelings. The notion weekly hypnosis sessions all her repressed memory from the
fascinated Austrian neurologist and symptoms had been alleviated. unconscious, allowing the patient
psychiatrist Sigmund Freud, who Breuer concluded that her to consciously recall the memory
wanted to nd out if it was possible symptoms had been the result and confront the experience, both
to explain things that seemed to lie of disturbing memories buried in emotionally and intellectually. The
beyond the connes of psychology her unconscious mind, and that process set free the trapped
at the time. Those who had begun voicing the thoughts brought them emotion, and the symptoms
to examine the unconscious feared to consciousness, allowing the disappeared. Breuer disagreed with
that it might be lled with psychic symptoms to disappear. This is what he felt was Freuds eventual
See also: Johann Friedrich Herbart 2425 Jean-Martin Charcot 30 Carl Jung 10207 Melanie Klein 10809

Anna Freud 111 Jacques Lacan 12223 Paul Watzlawick 149 Aaron Beck 17475 Elizabeth Loftus 20207

overemphasis on the sexual origins powerful dimensions of the

and content of neuroses (problems unconscious, the warehouse
caused by psychological conicts), from which our active cognitive
and the two parted; Freud to state and behavior are dictated.
continue developing the ideas and The conscious is effectively the
techniques of psychoanalysis. puppet in the hands of the The poets and philosophers
unconscious. The conscious
before me discovered the
Our everyday mind mind is merely the surface of
It is easy to take for granted the a complex psychic realm.
unconscious; what
reality of the conscious, and Since the unconscious is all-
I discovered was the
naively believe that what we think, encompassing, Freud says, it scientic method by
feel, remember, and experience contains within it the smaller which it could be studied.
make up the entirety of the human spheres of the conscious and an Sigmund Freud
mind. But Freud says that the area called the preconscious.
active state of consciousness Everything that is consciousthat
that is, the operational mind of we actively knowhas at one
which we are directly aware in time been unconscious
our everyday experienceis just a before rising to consciousness.
fraction of the total psychological However, not everything becomes
forces at work in our psychical consciously known; much of what reside in a part of the conscious
reality. The conscious exists at is unconscious remains there. mind that Freud called the
the supercial level, to which we Memories that are not in our preconscious. We are able to bring
have easy and immediate access. everyday working memory, but these memories into conscious
Beneath the conscious lies the which have not been repressed, awareness at any time.

When ideas, memories, or and stored in the unconscious

impulses are too overwhelming or alongside our instinctual drives,
inappropriate for the conscious mind where they are not accessible by
to withstand, they are repressed immediate consciousness.

The difference between our The unconscious silently

unconscious and conscious thoughts directs the thoughts and
creates psychic tension behavior of the individual.

that can only be released when

repressed memories are allowed into
consciousness through psychoanalysis.


The mind is like

an iceberg; it oats EGO PRECONSCIOUS
with one-seventh
of its bulk above water.
Sigmund Freud


Our psyche, according to Freud,
resembles an iceberg, with the area of
primitive drives, the id, lying hidden in
the unconscious. The ego deals with
conscious thoughts and regulates
both the id and the superegoour
critical, judging voice.

The unconscious acts as a energy in a system stays constant our behavior, directing us
receptacle for ideas or memories over time; it cannot be destroyed, toward choices that promise to
that are too powerful, too painful, only moved or transformed. Freud satisfy our basic needs. The drives
or otherwise too much for the applied this thinking to mental ensure our survival: the need for
conscious mind to process. Freud processes, resulting in the idea of food and water; the desire for
believed that when certain ideas psychic energy. This energy, he sex to ensure the continuation
or memories (and their associated said, can undergo modication, of our species; and the necessity
emotions) threaten to overwhelm transmission, and conversion, but to nd warmth, shelter, and
the psyche, they are split apart from cannot be destroyed. So if we have a companionship. But Freud claims
a memory that can be accessed by thought that the conscious mind the unconscious also holds a
the conscious mind, and stored in nds unacceptable, the mind contrasting drive, the death drive,
the unconscious instead. redirects it away from conscious which is present from birth. This
thought into the unconscious, in a drive is self-destructive and impels
Dynamic thought process Freud called repression. us forward, though as we do so we
Freud was also inuenced by the We may repress the memory of a are moving closer to our death.
physiologist Ernst Brcke, who was childhood trauma (such as abuse In his later works, Freud moved
one of the founders of the 19th- or witnessing an accident), a desire away from the idea that the mind
centurys new physiology, which we have judged as unacceptable was structured by the conscious,
looked for mechanistic explanations (perhaps for your best friends unconscious, and preconscious to
for all organic phenomena. Brcke partner), or ideas that otherwise propose a new controlling structure:
claimed that like every other living threaten our well-being or way of life. the id, ego, and superego. The id
organism, the human being is (formed of primitive impulses)
essentially an energy system, and so Motivating drives obeys the Pleasure Principle, which
must abide by the Principle of the The unconscious is also the place says that every wishful impulse
Conservation of Energy. This law where our instinctual biological must be immediately gratied: it
states that the total amount of drives reside. The drives govern wants everything now. However,
another part of the mental structure, wonder that humans exist in states
the ego, recognizes the Reality of anxiety, depression, neurosis,
Principle, which says we cant have and other forms of discontent?
everything we desire, but must
take account of the world we live Psychoanalytical treatment
in. The ego negotiates with the id, Since the unconscious remains A man should not
trying to nd reasonable ways to inaccessible, the only way the
strive to eliminate his
help it get what it wants, without conicts can be recognized is
resulting in damage or other through the symptoms that are
complexes, but to get into
terrible consequences. The ego present in the conscious. Emotional
accord with them; they are
itself is controlled by the suffering, Freud claims, is the result legitimately what directs his
superegothe internalized voice of unconscious conict. We cannot conduct in the world.
of parents and societys moral continually ght against ourselves, Sigmund Freud
codes. The superego is a judging against the uprising of repressed
force, and the source of our material, and against the force of
conscience, guilt, and shame. death, without emotional turmoil.
In fact, Freud proposes, the Freuds unique approach to the
unconscious holds a vast amount treatment of psychological ailments
of conicting forces. In addition involved working with the conicts
to the drives of the life and that existed in the unconscious. that encourages a patient to lie on
death forces, it encompasses the He sought to free the patient a couch and talk. From Freuds rst
intensity of repressed memories from repressed memories and so treatments, psychoanalysis has
and emotions, as well as the alleviate their mental pain. His been practiced in sessions that
contradictions inherent in our approach to treatment is called can sometimes last for hours, take
views of conscious reality alongside psychoanalytic psychotherapy, or place several times per week, and
our repressed reality. According psychoanalysis. This process is continue for many years.
to Freud, the conict that arises not easy or quick. Psychoanalysis While unconscious thoughts
from these contrasting forces is is only performed by a therapist cannot be retrieved through normal
the psychological conict that trained in Freuds specic introspection, the unconscious can
underlies human suffering. Is it any approach, and it is his therapy communicate with the conscious in
some ways. It quietly communicates
via our preferences, the frames of
reference in which we tend to
understand things, and the symbols
that we are drawn to or create.
During analysis, the analyst
acts as a mediator, trying to allow
unspoken thoughts or unbearable
feelings to come to light. Messages
arising from a conict between the
conscious and the unconscious are
likely to be disguised, or encoded,
and it is the psychoanalysts job to
interpret the messages using the
tools of psychoanalysis.

Freuds patients would recline on

this couch in his treatment room while
they talked. Freud would sit out of sight
while he listened for clues to the source
of the patients internal conicts.
There are several techniques that childhood, when nakedness was
allow the unconscious to emerge. not frowned upon and there was
One of the rst to be discussed no sense of shame. In dreams
by Freud at length was dream where the dreamer feels
analysis; he famously studied embarrassment, the other people
his own dreams in his book, The in the dream generally seem
The interpretation of
Interpretation of Dreams. He oblivious, lending support to a
claimed that every dream enacts wish-fullment interpretation
dreams is the royal road to
a wish fullment, and the more where the dreamer wants to leave
knowledge of the unconscious
unpalatable the wish is to our behind shame and restriction. activities of the mind.
conscious mind, the more hidden Even buildings and structures Sigmund Freud
or distorted the desire becomes in have coded meanings; stairwells,
our dreams. So the unconscious, mine shafts, locked doors, or a
he says, sends messages to our small building in a narrow recess
conscious mind in code. For all represent repressed sexual
instance, Freud discusses dreams feelings, according to Freud.
where the dreamer is nakedthe
primary source for these dreams in Accessing the unconscious or emotion. It is an involuntary
most people is memories from early Other well-known ways in which substitution of one word for
the unconscious reveals itself are another that sounds similar but
through Freudian slips and the inadvertently reveals something the
Salvador Dalis The Persistence of
Memory (1931) is a surrealist vision process of free association. A person really feels. For instance, a
of time passing, leading to decay and Freudian slip is a verbal error, or man might thank a woman he nds
death. Its fantastical quality suggests slip of the tongue, and it is said to desirable for making the breast
the Freudian process of dream analysis. reveal a repressed belief, thought, dinner ever, the slip revealing his
true thoughts. Freud used the free- describes the act of releasing
association technique (developed and feeling the deep emotions
by Carl Jung), whereby patients associated with repressed
heard a word and were then invited memories. If the signicant
to say the rst word that came into eventsuch as the death of a
their mind. He believed that this parentwas not fully experienced
process allowed the unconscious at the time because it was too
to break through because our mind overwhelming, the difculty and
uses automatic associations, so the energy remain, to be released
hidden thoughts are voiced at the moment of catharsis.
before the conscious mind has
a chance to interrupt. School of psychoanalysis
In order to help an individual Freud founded the prominent
emerge from a repressed state and Psychoanalytic Society in Vienna, Sigmund Freud
begin to consciously deal with the from which he exerted his
real issues that are affecting him powerful inuence on the mental Born Sigismund Schlomo
or her, Freud believed that it is health community of the time, Freud in Freiberg, Moravia,
Freud was openly his mothers
necessary to access repressed training others in his methods and
favorite child; she called
feelings. For example, if a man nds acting as the authority on what him Golden Siggie. When
it difcult to confront others, he will was acceptable practice. Over Freud was four years old, the
choose to repress his feelings rather time, his students and other family moved to Vienna and
than deal with the confrontation. professionals modied his ideas, Sigismund became Sigmund.
Over time, however, these eventually splitting the Society Sigmund completed a medical
repressed emotions build up and into three: the Freudians (who degree and in 1886 he opened
reveal themselves in other ways. remained true to Freuds original a medical practice specializing
Anger, anxiety, depression, drug thoughts), the Kleinians (who in neurology, and married
and alcohol abuse, or eating followed the ideas of Melanie Martha Bernays. Eventually,
disorders may all be the result of Klein), and the Neo-Freudians he developed the talking
struggling to fend off feelings that (a later group who incorporated cure that was to become an
have been repressed instead of Freuds ideas into their broader entirely new psychological
being addressed. Unprocessed practice). Modern psychoanalysis approach: psychoanalysis.
In 1908, Freud established
emotions, Freud asserts, are encompasses at least 22 different
the Psychoanalytic Society,
constantly threatening to break schools of thought, though Freuds
which ensured the future of
through, generating an increasingly ideas continue to remain inuential his school of thought. During
uncomfortable tension and inciting for all contemporary practitioners. World War II, the Nazis
more and more extreme measures publicly burned his work, and
to keep them down. Freud moved to London. He
Analysis allows trapped died by assisted suicide, after
memories and feelings to emerge, enduring mouth cancer.
and the patient is often surprised
to feel the emotion that has been Key works
buried. It is not uncommon for Like the physical,
patients to nd themselves moved the psychical is not 1900 The Interpretation
to tears by an issue from many necessarily in reality of Dreams
years ago that they felt they had what it appears to be. 1904 The Psychopathology
long since got over. This response Sigmund Freud of Everyday Life
1905 Three Essays on the
demonstrates that the event and the
Theory of Sexuality
emotion are still alivestill holding 1930 Civilization and Its
emotional energyand have been Discontents
repressed rather than dealt with.
In Freudian terms, catharsis


ALFRED ADLER (18701937)

reudian thinking dominated psychology was also inuenced
IN CONTEXT psychotherapy in the late by present and conscious forces,
19th century, but Freuds and that the inuence of the social
approach was limited to addressing realm and environment was
Individual psychology
unconscious drives and the legacy equally vital. Adler founded
BEFORE of an individuals past. Alfred Adler his own approach, individual
1896 William James says that was the rst psychoanalyst to psychology, based on these ideas.
self-esteem is about a ratio of expand psychological theory Adlers particular interest in
goals satised to goals beyond the Freudian viewpoint, inferiority and the positive and
unmet and can be raised suggesting that a persons negative effects of self-esteem
by lowering expectations as
well as through achievements.
1902 Charles Horton Cooley Every child feels inferior because stronger,
describes the looking glass smarter people surround them.
self; the way we view
ourselves is based on how we
imagine other people view us.
AFTER Inferiority motivates them to try to do and achieve things.
1943 Abraham Maslow says
that to feel both necessary
and good about ourselves we
need achievements as well
as respect from others. In a balanced psyche, In an imbalanced psyche,
success relieves feelings success doesnt relieve
1960s British psychologist of inferiority feelings of inferiority
Michael Argyle states that
comparison shapes self-esteem;
we feel better when we feel
more successful than others,
and worse when we feel less and condence and an inferiority
successful than others. develops. complex develops.
See also: Karen Horney 110 Eric Fromm 12429 Abraham Maslow 13839

Rollo May 141 Albert Ellis 14245

because they are constantly

surrounded by stronger, more
powerful people with greater
abilities. A child generally seeks
to emulate and achieve the abilities
of its elders, motivated by the
surrounding forces that propel him
toward his own development and
Children and adults with a
healthy and balanced personality Alfred Adler
gain condence each time they
realize that they are capable of After coming close to death
meeting external goals. Feelings of from pneumonia at the age of
ve, Alfred Adler expressed a
inferiority dissipate until the next
wish to become a physician.
challenge presents itself and is Growing up in Vienna, he
overcome; this process of psychic went on to study medicine,
A paralympic athlete may be driven growth is continual. However, an branching into ophthalmology
by a powerful desire to overcome her individual with a physical inferiority before nally settling with
disabilities and reach greater levels of may develop more generalized psychology. In 1897, he married
physical achievement. Adler described feelings of inferiorityleading to
this trait as compensation. Raissa Epstein, a Russian
an unbalanced personality and intellectual and social activist,
what Adler termed an inferiority and they had four children.
began early in his career, when complex, where the feelings of Adler was one of the original
he worked with patients who had inferiority are never relieved. members of the Freudian-
physical disabilities. Looking at Adler also recognized the based Vienna Psychoanalytical
the effects that disability had on equally unbalanced superiority Society and the rst to depart
achievement and sense of self, he complex, manifested in a constant from it, asserting that
individuals are affected by
found huge differences between need to strive toward goals. When
social factors as well as the
his patients. Some people with attained, these goals do not instil
unconscious drives that Freud
disabilities were able to reach high condence in the individual, but identied. After this split in
levels of athletic success, and Adler merely prompt him to continually 1911, Adler ourished
noted that in these personalities, seek further external recognition professionally, establishing his
the disability served as a strong and achievements. own school of psychotherapy
motivational force. At the other and developing many of
extreme, he witnessed patients psychologys prominent
who felt defeated by their disability concepts. He left Austria in
and who made little effort to improve 1932 for the US. He died of a
their situation. Adler realized that heart attack while lecturing at
the differences came down to how Aberdeen University, Scotland.
these individuals viewed themselves: To be human is to
in other words, their self-esteem. feel inferior. Key works
Alfred Adler
1912 The Neurotic Character
The inferiority complex 1927 The Practice and Theory
According to Adler, feeling inferior of Individual Psychology
is a universal human experience 1927 Understanding Human
that is rooted in childhood. Nature
Children naturally feel inferior
CARL JUNG (18751961)

Myths and symbols are strikingly similar in cultures around
APPROACH the world and across the centuries.
1899 Sigmund Freud explores
the nature of the unconscious
and dream symbolism in The Therefore, they must be a result of the knowledge and
Interpretation of Dreams. experiences we share as a species.
1903 Pierre Janet suggests
that traumatic incidents
generate emotionally charged
beliefs, which inuence an The memory of this shared experience is held
individuals emotions and
behaviors for many years.
1949 Jungian scholar Joseph
Campbell publishes Hero With
a Thousand Faces, detailing in the form of archetypes
in the collective
symbols that act as
archetypal themes in literature unconscious, which is part
organizing forms for
from many different cultures of each and every person.
behavioral patterns.
throughout history.
1969 British psychologist
John Bowlby states that
human instinct is expressed
as patterned action and Each of us is born with the innate tendency to use
thought in social exchanges. these archetypes to understand the world.

igmund Freud introduced the despite being culturally very unconscious exists within each of
idea that rather than being different. They share an uncanny us, which is not based on any of our
guided by forces outside commonality in their myths and own individual experiencesthis
ourselves, such as God or fate, we symbols, and have for thousands of is the collective unconscious.
are motivated and controlled by the years. He thought that this must be The commonly found myths and
inner workings of our own minds, due to something larger than the symbols are, for Jung, part of this
specically, the unconscious. He individual experience of man; the universally shared collective
claimed that our experiences are symbols, he decided, must exist as unconscious. He believed that the
affected by primal drives contained part of the human psyche. symbols exist as part of hereditary
in the unconscious. His protg, It seemed to Jung that the memories that are passed on from
the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung, existence of these shared myths generation to generation, changing
took this idea further, delving into proved that part of the human only slightly in their attributes
the elements that make up the psyche contains ideas that are held across different cultures and time
unconscious and its workings. in a timeless structure, which acts periods. These inherited memories
Jung was fascinated by the way as a form of collective memory. emerge within the psyche in the
that societies around the world Jung introduced the notion that one language of symbols, which Jung
share certain striking similarities, distinct and separate part of the calls archetypes.
See also: Pierre Janet 5455 Sigmund Freud 9299 Jaques Lacan 12223 Steven Pinker 211

and the collective unconscious. Jung believes that the self has
The ego, he says, represents the both masculine and feminine
conscious mind or self, while the parts, and is molded into
personal unconscious contains becoming fully male or female by
the individuals own memories, society as much as biology. When
including those that have been we become wholly male or female
The personal
suppressed. The collective we turn our backs on half of our
unconscious rests upon a unconscious is the part of the potential, though we can still
deeper layer I call the psyche that houses the archetypes. access this part of the self through
collective unconscious. an archetype. The Animus exists
Carl Jung The archetypes as the masculine component of the
There are many archetypes, and female personality, and the Anima
though they can blend and mold as the feminine attributes of the
into each other in different cultures, male psyche. This is the other
each of us contains within us the half, the half that was taken from
model of each archetype. Since we us as we grew into a girl or boy.
use these symbolic forms to make These archetypes help us to
Ancient memories sense of the world and our understand the nature of the
Jung believes that the archetypes experiences, they appear in all opposite sex, and because they
are layers of inherited memory, and human forms of expression, such contain deposits of all the
they constitute the entirety of the as art, literature, and drama. impressions ever made by a man
human experience. The Latin word The nature of an archetype is or woman, so they necessarily
archetypum translates as rst- such that we recognize it instantly reect the traditional ideas of
molded, and Jung believed that and are able to attach to it a specic, masculine and feminine.
archetypes are memories from the emotional meaning. Archetypes
experiences of our rst ancestors. can be associated with many kinds
They act as templates within the of behavioral and emotional
psyche that we use unconsciously patterns, but there are certain
to organize and understand our own prominent ones that are highly
experience. We may ll out the gaps recognizable, such as The Wise Old
with details from our individual Man, The Goddess, The Madonna,
lives, but it is this preexisting the Great Mother, and The Hero.
substructure in the unconscious The Persona is one of the most
that is the framework that allows important archetypes described by
us to make sense of our experience. Jung. He recognized early in his
Archetypes can be thought of as own life that he had a tendency to
inherited emotional or behavioral share only a certain part of his
patterns. They allow us to recognize personality with the outside world.
a particular set of behaviors or He also recognized this trait in
emotional expressions as a unied other people, and noted that human
pattern that has meaning. It seems beings divide their personalities
that we do this instinctively, but into components, selectively
Jung says that what seems to be sharing only certain components
instinct is actually the unconscious of their selves according to the
Eve is one representation of the
use of archetypes. environment and situation. The self Anima, the female part of a mans
Jung suggests that the psyche that we present to the worldour unconscious. Jung says she is full
is composed of three components: public imageis an archetype, of snares and traps, in order that man
the ego, the personal unconscious, which Jung calls the Persona. should fall and life should be lived.
moods and reactions, and can True Self. When fully realized, this
manifest themselves as prophetic archetype is the source of wisdom
statements (Anima) or unbending and truth, and is able to connect
rationality (Animus). the self to the spiritual. Jung
Jung denes one archetype as stressed that self-realization does
representing the part of ourselves not happen automatically, it must
All the most powerful we do not want the world to see. He be consciously sought.
ideas in history go back calls it the Shadow, and it is the
to archetypes. opposite of the Persona, representing Archetypes in dreams
Carl Jung all our secret or repressed thoughts The archetypes are of signicant
and the shameful aspects of our importance in the interpretation
character. It appears in the Bible of dreams. Jung believed that
as the devil, and in literature as dreams are a dialogue between the
Dr. Jekylls Mr. Hyde. The Shadow is conscious self and the eternal (the
the bad side of ourselves that we ego and the collective unconscious),
project onto others, and yet it is not and that the archetypes operate
The Animus is represented in our entirely negative; it may represent as symbols within the dream,
culture as the real man; he is the aspects that we choose to suppress facilitating the dialogue.
muscle man, the commander of only because they are unacceptable The archetypes have specic
soldiers, the cool logician, and in a particular situation. meanings in the context of dreams.
the romantic seducer. The Anima Of all the archetypes, the most For instance, the archetype of The
appears as a wood nymph, a virgin, important is the True Self. This is a Wise Old Man or Woman may be
a seductress. She can be close to central, organizing archetype that represented in a dream by a
nature, intuitive, and spontaneous. attempts to harmonize all other spiritual leader, parent, teacher, or
She appears in paintings and aspects into a unied, whole self. doctorit indicates those who offer
stories as Eve, or Helen of Troy, According to Jung, the real goal of guidance, direction, and wisdom.
or a personality such as Marilyn human existence is to achieve an The Great Mother, an archetype
Monroe, bewitching men or advanced, enlightened psychological who might appear as the dreamers
sucking the life from them. As state of being that he refers to as own mother or grandmother,
these archetypes exist in our self-realization, and the route to represents the nurturer. She
unconscious, they can affect our this lies in the archetype of the provides reassurance, comfort, and
validation. The Divine Child, the
archetype that represents your True
Self in its purest form, symbolizing
innocence or vulnerability, would
appear as a baby or child in
dreams, suggesting openness or
potential. And lest the ego grow
too large, it is kept in check by the
appearance of the Trickster, a
playful archetype that exposes the
dreamers vulnerabilities and plays
jokes, preventing the individual
from taking himself and his desires
too seriously. The Trickster also

Dr. Jekyll transforms into the evil

Mr. Hyde in a story by Robert Louis
Stevenson that explores the idea of the
darker self, through a character that
embodies Jungs Shadow archetype.

Carl Jung
Carl Gustav Jung was born
in a small Swiss village to an
educated family with a fair
share of eccentrics. He was
close to his mother, though she
suffered from bouts of
appears as the Norse half-god Loki, The tale of Snow White can be depression. A talented
the Greek god Pan, the African found all over the world with minor linguist, Jung mastered many
spider god Anansi, or simply a variations. Jung attributed the universal
European languages as well
popularity of fairy tales and myths
magician or clown. as several ancient ones,
to their use of archetypal characters.
including Sanskrit. He married
Using the archetypes Emma Rauschenbach in 1903
The archetypes exist in our minds collective unconscious and its and they had ve children.
before conscious thought, and can contents affect the conscious state. Jung trained in psychiatry,
therefore have an immensely According to Jung, much of what but after meeting Sigmund
powerful impact on our perception we generally attribute to deliberate, Freud in 1907, he became a
of experience. Whatever we may reasoned, conscious thinking is psychoanalyst and Freuds
heir apparent. However, the
consciously think is happening, actually already being guided by
pair grew estranged over
what we choose to perceiveand unconscious activity, especially the
theoretical differences and
therefore experienceis governed organizing forms of the archetypes. never met again. In the years
by these preformed ideas within In addition to his ideas of the following World War I, Jung
the unconscious. In this way, the collective unconscious and the traveled widely through Africa,
archetypes, Jung was the rst to America, and India, studying
explore the practice of word native people and taking
association, and he also introduced part in anthropological and
the concepts of the extrovert and archaeological expeditions.
introvert personality types. These He became a professor at the
ultimately inspired widely used University of Zurich in 1935,
By understanding the personality tests such as the but gave up teaching to
unconscious we free ourselves MyersBriggs Type Indicator (MBTI). concentrate on research.
from its domination. Jungs work was inuential in the
Carl Jung elds of psychology, anthropology, Key works
and spirituality, and his archetypes
1912 Symbols of Transformation
are so widespread that they can 1934 The Archetypes and the
easily be identied in lm, literature, Collective Unconscious
and other cultural forms that attempt 1945 On the Nature of Dreams
to portray universal characters.

MELANIE KLEIN (18821960)

he theme of opposing
IN CONTEXT forces has always intrigued
writers, philosophers, and
scientists. Literature, religion, and
art are lled with tales of good and
BEFORE evil, of friend and foe. Newtonian
1818 German philosopher physics states that stability or
Arthur Schopenhauer states balance is achieved through one
that existence is driven by the force being countered by an equal
will to live, which is constantly and opposite force. Such opposing
being opposed by an equally forces appear to be an essential
forceful death drive. part of existence, and perhaps
the most powerful of them are
1910 Psychoanalyst Wilhelm Dramas power lies in its reection of
the instinctive drives we have real emotions and feelings. Great plays,
Stekel suggests that social for life and death. such as Shakespeares Romeo and
suppression of the sexual Sigmund Freud said that to Juliet, show not only loves life-afrming
instinct is paralleled by the avoid being destroyed by our own force, but also its deadly, toxic aspects.
growth of a death instinct. death instinct, we employ our
narcissistic or self-regarding life procreation to creativityare
1932 Sigmund Freud claims
instinct (libido) to force the death forced to run constantly against an
that the most basic drive instinct outward, directing it equally powerful and destructive
for satisfaction is in fact a against other objects. Melanie Klein force, and that this ongoing psychic
striving toward death. expanded on this, saying that even tension underlies all suffering.
AFTER as we redirect the death force Klein also stated that this
2002 American psychologist outward, we still sense the danger psychic tension explains our innate
Julie K. Norem introduces the of being destroyed by this instinct tendency toward aggression and
idea of defensive pessimism, of aggression; we acknowledge the violence. It creates a related
suggesting that being huge task of mobilizing the libido struggle between love and hate,
against it. Living with these present even in a newborn baby.
pessimistic may in fact
opposing forces is an inherent This constant battle between our
better prepare people to
psychological conict that is life and death instinctsbetween
cope with the demands central to human experience. pleasure and pain, renewal and
and stresses of modern life. Klein claimed that our tendencies destructionresults in confusion
toward growth and creationfrom within our psyches. Anger or
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Anna Freud 111 Jacques Lacan 12223

bad feelings may then become

directed toward every situation,
whether they are good or bad. The human unconscious contains

Constant conict
Klein believed that we never shed
these primitive impulses. We
maintain them throughout life,
never reaching a safe, mature state, the life instinct, which the death instinct, which
but living with an unconscious drives us toward growth drives us toward destruction
and creation. and disintegration.
that simmers with primitive
fantasies of violence. Given the
permeating inuence of such a
psychic conict, Klein thought
that traditional notions of happiness
are impossible to attain, and that Life itself is the striving against a drive toward death.
living is about nding a way to
tolerate the conict; it is not about
achieving nirvana.
As this state of tolerance is the
best that we can hope for, Klein
found it unsurprising that life falls This creates a constant psychic tension in which
short of what people desire or
believe they deserve, resulting in
depression and disappointment.
Human experience, to Klein, is
inevitably lled with anxiety, pain, the struggle between the life and death
loss, and destruction. People must, instincts persists throughout life.
therefore, learn to work within the
extremes of life and death.

Melanie Klein One of four children, Melanie Although Klein did not have any
Klein was born in Austria. Her formal academic qualications,
parents, who later divorced, were she was a major inuence in the
cold and unaffectionate. At 17, she eld of psychoanalysis, and is
became engaged to Arthur Klein, particularly revered for her work
an industrial chemist, casting with children, and for her use of
aside her plans to study medicine. play as a form of therapy.
Klein decided to become a
psychoanalyst after reading a Key works
book by Sigmund Freud in 1910.
She suffered from depression 1932 The Psychoanalysis of
herself, and was haunted by Children
death: her adored elder sister 1935 A Contribution to The
died when Klein was four; her Psychogenesis of Manic
older brother died in a suspected Depressive States
suicide; and her son was killed in 1961 Narrative of a Child
a climbing accident in 1933. Analysis

KAREN HORNEY (18851952)

ocial environmentsfrom the beliefs, but from those internalized
IN CONTEXT family to schools, workplaces, from a toxic environment. These
and the wider community play out as internalized messages,
develop cultural norms upheld by especially in the form of shoulds,
certain beliefs. The German-born such as I should be recognized and
BEFORE psychoanalyst Karen Horney said powerful or I should be thin. She
1889 In LAutomatism that unhealthy, or toxic, social taught her patients to become aware
Psychologique, Pierre Janet environments are likely to create of two inuences in their psyche: the
describes splitting, where unhealthy belief systems in real self with authentic desires,
a personality branches into individuals, hindering people from and the ideal self that strives to
distinct, separate parts. realizing their highest potential. fulll all the demands of the
Horney said that it is essential to shoulds. The ideal self lls the
AFTER recognize when we are not mind with ideas that are unrealistic
1950s Melanie Klein says that operating from self-determined and inappropriate to the journey of
people split off parts of their the real self, and generates negative
personalities to cope with feedback based on the failures of
otherwise unmanageable, the real self to achieve the
conicting feelings. expectations of the ideal self. This
leads to the development of a third,
1970s Austrian psychoanalyst unhappy selfthe despised self.
Heinz Kohut claims that when Forget about the Horney says the shoulds are the
a childs needs are not met, disgraceful creature basis of our bargain with fate; if
a fragmented self emerges, you actually are; this is we obey them, we believe we can
consisting of the narcissistic how you should be. magically control external realities,
self and the grandiose self. Karen Horney though in reality they lead to deep
1970s Albert Ellis develops unhappiness and neurosis. Horneys
Rational Emotive Behavioral views were particularly relevant in
Therapy to free people from her own social environment, early
20th-century Germany, which
internalized musts.
leaned heavily toward conformity.

See also: Pierre Janet 5455 Sigmund Freud 9299 Melanie Klein 10809

Carl Rogers 13037 Abraham Maslow 13839 Albert Ellis 14245


ANNA FREUD (18951982)

ccording to the Bible, effects upon the ego. The ego
IN CONTEXT Adam and Eve in the takes account of the realities of the
Garden of Eden are world, and is also simultaneously
decision-makers, faced with the engaged with the id and relegated
choice between temptation and to an inferior position by the
BEFORE righteousness. In his structural superego. The superego speaks
1920 Sigmund Freud rst model of the psyche, Sigmund Freud through the language of guilt and
uses the concepts of the ego, describes a similar model within the shame, like a kind of internalized
id, and superego in his essay human unconscious, proposing a critical parent. We hear the superego
Beyond the Pleasure Principle. psychic apparatus of three parts: the when we berate ourselves for
id, the superego, and the ego. thinking or acting a certain way;
AFTER The id, like a sneaky serpent, the superego becomes clear (or
1950s Melanie Klein disagrees whispers to us to do what feels speaks out) only when it confronts
that actual parental inuence good. It is driven entirely by desire, the ego with hostility.
is involved in the formation of seeking pleasure and the fullment
the superego. of basic drives (such as food, comfort, Ego defense mechanisms
warmth, and sex). The superego, like The critical voice of the superego
1961 Eric Berne presents
a righteous presence, calls us to leads to anxiety, and this is when,
the idea that we retain child, follow the higher path. It imposes according to Anna Freud, we bring
adult, and parental ego states parental and societal values and tells ego defenses into play. These are
throughout our lives, and says us what we should and should not the myriad methods that the
that these can be explored do. Lastly, the egolike a decision- mind uses to prevent anxiety from
through analysis. making adultcontrols impulses becoming overwhelming. Freud
1976 American psychologist and forms judgments on how to act; described the many and creative
Jane Loevinger says that it is the moderator, suspended defense mechanisms we employ,
the ego develops in stages between the id and the superego. from humor and sublimation to
throughout a persons life, Austrian psychoanalyst Anna denial and displacement. Her theory
as a result of an interaction Freud expanded upon her fathers of ego defenses was to prove a rich
ideas, drawing attention to the seam of thought within the humanist
between the inner self and
formation of the superego and its therapies of the 20th century.
the outer environment.
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Melanie Klein 108109 Eric Berne 337
FRITZ PERLS (18931970)

IN CONTEXT People believe that their viewpoint

of the world is the objective truth.
Gestalt therapy
1920s Carl Jung says that But human experience is colored by the
personal lenses through which we view it.
people need to connect with
their inner selves.
1943 Max Wertheimer explains
the Gestalt idea of productive Because it is our perception that
thinking, which is distinctive shapes our experience
for using personal insight.
1950 In Neurosis and Human
Growth, Karen Horney
identies the need to reject the it is possible to change we must discard the
shoulds imposed by others. our inner realities, given values of society
and ultimately our and family, and discover our
AFTER external realities. own, true values.
1961 Carl Rogers says that it
is the client, not the therapist,
who knows what form and
direction therapy should take.
We become aware that we are
1973 American self-help building our own world, or truth.
author Richard Bandler, one of
the founders of Neurolinguistic
Programming (NLP), uses
many of the Gestalt therapy
Truth can only be tolerated
techniques in his new therapy.
if you discover it yourself.

n the 18th century, the German range of possibilitiesis coded rather than acknowledging the role
philosopher Immanuel Kant by the individual lenses through of perception and its inuence in
revolutionized our thinking which we view it. We do not creating our perspective, together
about the world by pointing out that automatically absorb all the sounds, with all the ideas, actions, and
we can never really know what feelings, and pictures of the world; beliefs that stem from it. For Perls,
is out there beyond ourselves, we scan and select just a few. the only truth one can ever have is
because our knowledge is limited Fritz Perls, one of the founders ones own personal truth.
to the constraints of our minds and of Gestalt therapy, pointed out that
senses. We dont know how things this means our personal sense Accepting responsibility
are in themselves, but only as we of reality is created through our Perls developed his theories in
experience them. This view forms perception; through the ways in the 1940s, when the dominant
the basis of Gestalt therapy, which which we view our experiences, not psychoanalytical view was that the
says that it is vitally important to the events themselves. However, it human mind could be reduced to a
remember that the complexity of is easy to forget this, or even fail to series of biological drives seeking
the human experiencewith its recognize it. He says we tend to fullment. This approach was far
tragedies and traumas, inspirations mistake our viewpoint of the world too rigid, structured, simplied,
and passions, and its nearly innite for the absolute, objective truth, and generalized for Perls; it did not
See also: Sren Kierkegaard 2627 Carl Jung 102107 Karen Horney 110 Erich Fromm 12429
Carl Rogers 13037 Abraham Maslow 13839 Roger Shepard 192 Jon Kabat-Zinn 210 Max Wertheimer 335

allow for individual experience, The Gestalt prayer was written by Fritz Perls
which Perls held paramount. Nor to encapsulate Gestalt therapy. It emphasizes the
did its analysts enable their patients importance of living according to our own needs,
and not seeking fullment through others.
to recognize and take responsibility
for the creation of their experience.
The psychoanalytical model operates
on the understanding that patients
are at the mercy of their unconscious
conicts until an analyst enters to
save them from their unconscious I do my thing and
drives. Perls, on the other hand, you do your thing. You are you, and I
feels it is essential for people to I am not in this am I, and if by
understand the power of their world to live up to chance we nd each
own roles in creation. He wants your expectations, other, its beautiful.
to make us aware that we can And you are not in If not, it cant
change our realities, and in fact this world to live up be helped.
are responsible for doing so. No to mine.
one else can do it for us. Once
we realize that perception is the
backbone of reality, each of us
is forced to take responsibility
for the life we create and the way
we choose to view the world.

Acknowledging power
Gestalt theory uses the tenets of our external environment. Once to maintain emotional stability
individual experience, perception, we understand that our perception regardless of the environment as
and responsibilityboth for ones shapes our experience, we can homeostasis, using a biological
thoughts and feelingsto encourage see how the roles we play and the term normally used to describe the
personal growth by establishing actions we take are tools, which maintenance of a stable physical
a sense of internal control. Perls we can then use consciously for environment within the body. It
insists that we can learn to control changing reality. Control of our own implies a ne balancing of many
our inner experience, regardless of inner psychic environment gives us systems, and this is how Gestalt
power through two layers of choice: therapy views the mind. It looks for
in how to interpret the environment, ways of balancing the mind through
and how to react to it. The adage, the many thoughts, feelings, and
no one can make you angry other perceptions that make up the whole
than yourself, perfectly exemplies human experience. It views a person
this philosophy, and its truth can holistically and places the focus
Learning is be seen played out in the different rmly on the whole, not the parts.
the discovery that ways that people react to trafc Perls saw his task as helping his
something is possible. jams, bad news, or personal patients to cultivate an awareness
Fritz Perls criticism, for example. of the power of their perceptions,
In Gestalt therapy, a person is and how they shape reality (or what
forced to take direct responsibility we describe as reality). In this
for how he or she acts and reacts, way, his patients became able
regardless of what may seem to be to take control of shaping their
happening. Perls refers to this ability interior landscape. In taking
perceived reality in the present patient, who work together as
moment. This ability, to be here partners toward the goal. The
now is critical to the Gestalt therapist is dynamic but does not
process; it is an acute emotional lead the patient; the Gestalt
awareness, and one that forms the approach of Perls would later form
foundation for understanding how the basis of Carl Rogers humanistic,
each of us creates and reacts to our person-centered approach.
own environment. It also offers a
pathway for learning how to change A denial of fate
the ways we experience ourselves Another component in the Gestalt
and our environment. method involves the use of language.
As a tool for personal growth, One critical tool patients are given
the ability to get in touch with for increasing self-awareness is the
authentic feelingstrue thoughts instruction to notice and change the
and emotionsis more important use of the word I within speech.
Like Buddhism, Gestalt therapy to Perls than the psychological Perls says that to take responsibility
encourages the development of mindful explanations or analytic feedback for our reality, we must recognize
awareness and the acceptance of change of other forms of therapy. The how we use language to give the
as inevitable. Perls called change the
why behind behavior holds illusion that we have no control
study of creative adjustments.
little signicance for Perls; what when this is not the case. By simply
is important is the how and rephrasing I cant do that to I
responsibility for their perceived what. This devaluing of the need wont do that, it becomes clear that
sense of reality, they could create to nd out why and the shift of I am making a choice. This also
the reality they wanted. responsibility for meaning from helps to establish ownership of
Perls helped his patients achieve analyst to patient brought with it a feeling; emotions arise in and belong
this through teaching them the profound change in the therapist to me; I cannot blame someone or
integral processes of Gestalt therapy. patient hierarchy. Where previous something else for my feelings.
The rst and most important process approaches in therapy generally Other examples of language
is learning to cultivate awareness involved a therapist manipulating change include replacing the word
and to focus that awareness on the the patient toward the therapeutic should with want, changing, for
feelings of the present moment. goal, the Gestalt approach is example, I should leave now to I
This allows the individual to directly characterized by a warm, empathic want to leave now. This also acts
experience his or her feelings and relationship between therapist and to reveal the element of choice. As

Fritz Perls Frederick Fritz Salomon Perls thought. In the late 1960s, they
was born in Berlin at the end of separated, and Perls moved to
the 19th century. He studied California, where he continued
medicine, and after a short time in to change the landscape of
the German army during World psychotherapy. He left the US
War I, graduated as a doctor. He to start a therapy center in
then trained as a psychiatrist, and Canada in 1969, but died one
after marrying the psychologist year later of heart failure while
Laura Posner in 1930, emigrated conducting a workshop.
to South Africa, where he and
Laura set up a psychoanalytic Key works
institute. Becoming disenchanted
with the over-intellectualism of 1946 Ego Hunger and
the psychoanalytic approach, they Aggression
moved to New York City in the 1969 Gestalt Therapy Verbatim
late 1940s and became immersed 1973 The Gestalt Approach and
in a thriving culture of progressive Eye Witness to Therapy

Lose your mind and

come to your senses.
Fritz Perls

The 1960s hippie culture chimed

with the Gestalt idea of nding oneself,
but Perls warned against the peddlers
of instant joy and the so-called easy
road of sensory liberation.

we learn to take responsibility for With this personal responsibility counter-culture revolution of the
our experience, Perls says, we comes the obligation to refuse to Western world. But this focus on
develop authentic selves that are experience events, relationships, individualism was seen by some
free from societys inuence. We or circumstances that we know psychologists and analysts as
also experience self-empowerment to be wrong for our authentic a weakness within the therapy,
as we realize that we are not at selves. Gestalt theory also asks us especially by those who view
the mercy of things that just to look closely at what we choose human beings as, above all, social
happen. Feelings of victimization to accept among our societys beings. They claim that a life lived
dissolve once we understand that norms. We may have acted under along Gestalt principles would
what we accept for ourselves in our the assumption of their truth for so exclude the possibility of intimacy
liveswhat we selectively perceive long that we automatically accept with another, and that it focuses
and experienceis a choice; we them. Perls says we need instead to too much on the individual at the
are not powerless. adopt beliefs that best inspire and expense of the community. In
develop our authentic self. The response, supporters of Gestalt
ability to write our own personal therapy have claimed that without
rules, determine our own opinions, the development of an authentic
philosophies, desires, and interests self, it would not be possible to
is of the essence. As we increase develop an authentic relationship
our awareness of self-accountability, with another.
If you need encouragement, self-reliance, and self-insight, we In 1964, Perls became a regular
praise, pats on the back understand that we are building our lecturer at the Esalen Institute in
from everybody, then own world, or truth. The lives we California, becoming a lasting
you make everybody are living become easier to bear, inuence on this renowned center
your judge. because truth can be tolerated for spiritual and psychological
only if you discover it yourself. development. After an explosion of
Fritz Perls
popularity in the 1970s, Gestalt
The possibility of intimacy therapy fell out of favor, but its
Gestalt therapys emphasis on tenets were accepted into the roots
being in the present and nding of other forms of therapy. Gestalt is
ones own path and ones own ideas today recognized as one of many
tted perfectly within the 1960s standard approaches to therapy.


1900s Sigmund Freud
suggests that neurotic

conicts (and the superego)
arise in the Oedipal period
between ages three and six.


1930s Melanie Klein claims
that a primitive form of the


superego develops during the
rst year of life, and that love
and hate are inherently linked.
DONALD WINNICOTT (18961971) 1947 Psychologist and play
therapist Virginia Axline
develops her eight principles
of play therapy, which
include: Accept the child
as she or he is.
1979 Swiss psychoanalyst
Alice Miller says in The Drama
of the Gifted Child that we are
encouraged to develop the art
of not experiencing feelings.

any people believe that
if a child has suffered
an upbringing that was
lacking in love and support, he or
she will be able to settle and
ourish with a new family that
provides what is needed. However,
while stability and acceptance
help to give a foundation in which
a child can grow and nd a healthy
state of being, these qualities
make up only one part of what
is required.
As the rst pediatrician in
England to train as a psychoanalyst,
Donald Winnicott had a unique
insight into the mother-infant
relationship and the developmental
process of children. He was
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Melanie Klein 10809 Virginia Satir 14647

John Bowlby 27477

Children originally
so in defense, they
from neglectful or abusive
act out in hatred, even
homes are afraid that they
when placed with
will not be loved by
good parents.
their adoptive family

Donald Winnicott
If parents
This naturally evokes The English pediatrician and
acknowledge their
feelings of hatred in psychoanalyst Donald Woods
hatred and tolerate
the parents. Winnicott was the youngest
these feelings
child and only son born to a
prominent, prosperous family
living in Plymouth, England.
His father, Sir John Frederick
Winnicott, was an encouraging
inuence, although his mother
...the adopted child suffered from depression.
knows that he or Winnicott rst trained as a
The child will
she is loved and physician and pediatrician,
be able to form
lovable even when child completing psychoanalytic
strong attachments.
and adult are both training later, in the 1930s.
experiencing hatred. Winnicott married twice,
meeting his second wife Clare
Britton, a psychiatric social
worker, while working with
disturbed children who had
strongly inuenced by Sigmund believe he or she is loved only after
been evacuated during World
Freud but also by the writings being hated; he stresses that the War II. He continued to work
of Melanie Klein, particularly role that tolerance of hate plays in as a pediatrician for more than
regarding the unconscious feelings healing cannot be underestimated. 40 years and this gave his
of the mother or carer for the infant. Winnicott explains that when ideas a unique perspective. He
Winnicott began his career by a child has been deprived of twice served as president of
working with children displaced by proper parental nurturing, and is the British Psychoanalytical
World War II and he examined the then granted a chance of this in Society, and sought to widen
difculties faced by children who a healthy family environment, public knowledge through his
are trying to adapt to a new home. such as with an adoptive or many lectures and broadcasts.
As Winnicott notes in his paper, foster family, the child begins
Hate in the Countertransference: to develop unconscious hope. Key works
It is notoriously inadequate to But fear is associated with this
take an adopted child into ones hope. When a child has been so 1947 Hate in the
home and love him. In fact, the devastatingly disappointed in the
1951 Transitional Objects and
parents must be able to take the past, with even basic emotional Transitional Phenomena
adopted child into their home and or physical needs unsatised, 1960 The Theory of the
be able to tolerate hating him. defenses arise. These are ParentInfant Relationship
Winnicott states that a child can unconscious forces that protect
toward the parent, projecting past Dealing with the hatred
experiences of being neglected and The emotions that the childs
ignored onto present-day reality. hatred invokes in the parents, as
The child of a broken home or well as in the childs teachers and
without parents, Winnicott says, other authority gures, are very
spends his time unconsciously real. Winnicott believes that it is
It seems that an
looking for his parents and so essential that adults acknowledge
adopted child can feelings from past relationships these feelings, rather than deny
believe in being loved only are displaced onto another adult. them, which might seem easier.
after reaching being hated. The child has internalized the They also need to understand
Donald Winnicott hate, and sees it even when it is that the childs hatred is not
no longer present. In his new personal; the child is expressing
situation, the child needs to see anxiety about his previous unhappy
what happens when hatred is in situation with the person who
the air. Winnicott explains: What is now at hand.
happens is that after a while a What the authority gure does
child so adopted gains hope, and with their own hatred, of course, is
the child against the hope that then he starts to test out the of critical importance. The childs
may lead to disappointment. The environment he has found, and to belief that he or she is bad and
defenses, maintains Winnicott, seek proof of his guardians ability unworthy of being loved must not
explain the presence of hatred. to hate objectively. be reinforced by the response from
The child will act out in an There are many ways for a the adult; the adult must simply
outburst of anger against the new child to express hatred and prove tolerate the feelings of hatred and
parental gure, expressing hatred that he or she is indeed not worthy realize that these feelings are part
and, in turn, invoking hatred from of being loved. This worthlessness of the relationship. This is the only
the carer. He termed the behavior is the message that was imparted way the child will feel secure and
an antisocial tendency. by earlier, negative parental be able to form an attachment.
According to Winnicott, for a experiences. From the childs point No matter how loving a new
child who has suffered, the need to of view, he is attempting to protect environment may be, it does not
hate and be hated is deeper even himself from the risk of ever having erase the past for the child; there
than the need for rebellion, and the to feel love or to be loved because of will still be residual feelings as a
importance of the carer tolerating the potential disappointment that result of their past experience.
the hate is an essential factor in the accompanies that state of being. Winnicott sees no short cuts to a
healing of the child. Winnicott says
that the child must be allowed to
express the hatred, and the parent
must be able to tolerate both the
childs and their own hatred as well.
The idea may be shocking, and
people may struggle with the
notion that they feel hatred rising
within them. They may feel guilty,
because the child has been through
such difculties already. Yet the
child is actively behaving hatefully

The antisocial tendency in

children is a way they express
anxieties about their world, testing out
their caregivers who must continue to
provide a supportive and caring home.
Despite feeling the unconscious and
natural negative feelings provoked by
the child, a parent must provide an
environment that holds the child,
making him or her feel secure.

resolution. The child is expecting

that the adults feelings of hatred
will lead to rejection, because that
is what has happened before; when
the hatred does not lead to rejection
and is tolerated instead, it can
begin to dissipate.

Healthy hatred
Even in psychologically healthy
families with children who have not
been displaced, Winnicott believes
unconscious hatred is a natural, Therapeutic relationship generated by the patient as a
essential part of the parenting Winnicott also used the necessary part of testing that the
experience and speaks of hating relationship between the parent therapist can bear it. The patient
appropriately. Melanie Klein had and child as an analogy for the needs to know that the therapist
suggested that a baby feels hatred therapeutic relationship between is strong and reliable enough to
for its mother, but Winnicott therapist and client. The feelings withstand this onslaught.
proposes that this is preceded by that arise in a therapist during
the mother hating the babyand analysis are part of a phenomenon A realistic approach
that even before this, there is an known as countertransference. While some of Winnicotts ideas
extraordinary primitive or Feelings that are aroused in the may appear shocking, he believes
ruthless love. The babys client during therapyusually we should be realistic about
existence places huge demands feelings about parents or siblings bringing up children, avoiding
on the mother psychologically and are transferred onto the therapist. sentimentality in favor of honesty.
physically and these evoke feelings In his paper, Winnicott described This enables us as children, and
of hatred in the mother. Winnicotts how as part of the analysis, the later as adults, to acknowledge
list of 18 reasons why the mother therapist feels hate toward the and deal with natural, unavoidable
hates the baby include: that the client, though this hate was negative feelings. Winnicott is a
pregnancy and birth have realist and pragmatist; he refuses
endangered her life; that the baby to believe in the mythical idea of
is an interference with her private the perfect family or in a world
life; that the baby hurts her when where a few kind words wipe
nursing, even biting her; and that away all of the horrors that may
the baby treats her as scum, an have preceded it. He prefers to
unpaid servant, a slave. Despite all Sentimentality in a see the real environment and
of this she also loves him, excretions mother is no good mental states of our experience,
and all, says Winnicott, with a at all from the infants and asks us to do likewise, with
hugely powerful, primitive love, and point of view. courageous honesty. His ideas
has to learn how to tolerate hating Donald Winnicott did not t neatly into one school
her baby without in any way acting of thought, though they were
on it. If she cannot hate appropriately, hugely inuential, and continue to
he claims, she turns the feelings of impact on social work, education,
hatred toward herself, in a way that developmental psychology, and
is masochistic and unhealthy. psychoanalysis around the world.

JACQUES LACAN (19011981)

sychoanalysts explain the
IN CONTEXT unconscious as the place
The Other is everything that where all the memories that
APPROACH lies beyond the boundaries
of ourselves. we wish to push aside are stored,
and cannot be retrieved consciously.
BEFORE The unconscious sometimes speaks
1807 German philosopher to the conscious self in limited
Georg Hegel states that ways: Carl Jung believed that the
consciousness of self depends unconscious presents itself to
We dene and redene the waking self through dreams,
on the presence of the Other. ourselves through the symbols, and in the language of
1818 German philosopher existence of the Other. archetypes, while Freud saw it
Arthur Schopenhauer claims as expressing itself through
that there can be no object motivational behavior and
without a subject to observe it, accidental slips of the tongue.
and that perception of the The one thing that the various
object is limited by personal psychoanalytical schools do agree
vision and experience. We understand the world on is that the unconscious holds
through the language
a bigger picture than that retained
1890 William James in (discourse) of the Other.
by the conscious self. For French
The Principles of Psychology psychiatrist Jacques Lacan,
distinguishes between the self however, the language of the
as the knower, or I, and the unconscious is not that of the
self as the known, or me. self, but of the Other.
AFTER We also use that language for
1943 French philosopher
our innermost thoughts. A sense of self
We easily take for granted the
Jean-Paul Sartre states that
notion of the selfthat each of us
our perception of the world
exists as a separate, individual
around us, or the Other, alters being, who views the world through
when another person appears; The unconscious our own eyes, is familiar with the
we absorb his or her concept is the discourse of boundaries that separate us from
of the Other into our own. the Other. others and from the world around
us, and assumes a separateness
See also: William James 3845 Sigmund Freud 9299 Carl Jung 10207 Donald Hebb 163

of determining that as individuals

we are distinct from the world all
around us is our ability to recognize
the separateness of ourselves from
our environment, or from the Other,
which allows us to become the The I is always
subject I. Lacan therefore in the eld of the Other.
concluded that each of us is a Jacques Lacan
self only because we have a
concept of the Other.
For Lacan, the Other is the
absolute otherness that lies beyond
the self; it is the environment into
which we are born, and which we
Our sense of self is shaped by our have to translate or make sense We are only able to think or to
awareness of the Other, or the world of, in order to survive and thrive. express our ideas and emotions
outside ourselves. However, Lacan An infant must learn to assemble through language, and the only
stated, it is the language of the Other
sensations into concepts and language we have, according to
that forms our deepest thoughts.
categories in order to function in Lacan, is that of the Other. The
the world, and he or she does this sensations and images that
in thinking and in the way we through gradually acquiring an translate into the thoughts of
interact with our environment. awareness and understanding our unconscious must therefore be
But what if there was nothing out of a series of signierssigns or constructed from this language of
there that we could recognize as codes. But these signiers can the Other, or, as Lacan stated, the
being separate from ourselves? only come to us from the external unconscious is the discourse of
We would then be unable to world that lies beyond the self, the Other. This idea has had a
conceptualize our sense of self, therefore they must have been wide inuence on the practice of
because there would be no formed from the languageor psychoanalysis, leading to a more
delineated being to think what Lacan prefers to call the objective and open interpretation
about. The only way we have discourseof the Other. of the unconscious.

Jacques Lacan Jacques Marie mile Lacan was Lacans writings extend into
born in Paris, where he was philosophy, art, literature, and
educated at the Collge Stanlias. linguistics, and he gave weekly
He went on to study medicine, seminars that were attended by
specializing in psychiatry. Lacan eminent thinkers such as Roland
remained in occupied Paris during Barthes and Claude Lvi-Strauss.
World War II, working at the A keen Freudian, Lacan formed
Val-de-Grce military hospital. the cole Freudienne de Paris in
After the war, psychoanalysis 1963, and the cole de la Cause
became the key tool in Lacans Freudienne in 1981.
work. However, he was expelled by
the International Psychoanalytical Key works
Association in 1953, after an
argument over his deviant use 1966 crits
of shorter length therapy sessions. 1968 The Language of the Self
Lacan then set up La Socit 195480 The Seminars
Franaise de Psychanalytique. (27 volumes)
ERICH FROMM (19001980)

he ability to nd meaning of this separation and think about
IN CONTEXT in our lives is the dening our isolation. Man, gifted with
characteristic of humankind. reason, is life being aware of itself.
According to the German-American Fromm suggests that our
Humanistic psychoanalysis
psychoanalyst Erich Fromm, it also separation from nature originated
BEFORE determines whether we follow a with the growth of intellect,
125861 The Su mystic path of joy and fullment or tread which has made us aware of our
Rumi says that the longing a road of dissatisfaction and strife. separateness. It is our ability to
of the human soul comes from Fromm believed that although life reason and relate that lets us
separation from its source. is inherently painful, we can make transcend nature. It provides the
it bearable by giving it meaning, capabilities for productive living and
1950s Rollo May says that through pursuing and constructing affords us intellectual superiority,
the true religion consists of an authentic self. The ultimate but it also makes us realize that
facing lifes challenges with aim of a human life is to develop we exist alone in this world.
purpose and meaning, through what Fromm described as the Reason makes us aware of our own
accepting responsibility most precious quality man is mortality and the mortality of our
and making choices. endowed withthe love of life.
Life is inherently fraught with
AFTER emotional frustration, according to
1950 Karen Horney says Fromm, because man lives in a
that the neurotic self is split state of struggle. He is constantly
between an idealized and trying to balance his individual
a real self. naturehis existence as a separate It seems that nothing is
1960s Abraham Maslow beingwith his need for more difcult for the average
denes creativity and thinking connection. There is a part of mans man to bear than the feeling of
of others as characteristics of inherent self that only knows how not being identied
self-actualized people. to exist in a united state with with a larger group.
others; it lives at one with nature Erich Fromm
1970s Fritz Perls says that we and at one with other people. Yet
must nd ourselves in order to we see ourselves as separated from
achieve self-actualization. nature, and isolated from one
another. Worse still, we have the
unique capacity to ponder the fact

searching out and devoting ourselves

to the discovery of our own
ideas and abilities.

Life is fraught with

anxiety and powerlessness These feelings
because of our separation can be overcome
from nature and from through embracing our personal uniqueness.
one another.

developing our capacity to love.

See also: Alfred Adler 10001 Karen Horney 110 Fritz Perls 11217 Carl Rogers 13037 Abraham Maslow 13839
Rollo May 141

The creativity of artists encourages

them to interpret the world around
them in new ways. The worlds most
highly acclaimed artists have always
essentially been nonconformist.

loved ones. This understanding

creates a chronic source of tension
and an unbearable loneliness that
we are always seeking to overcome;
mans inherent state of being is one
of anxiety and hopelessness. But
there is hope, Fromm insists,
because man can overcome his
sense of isolation and alienation
through nding his purpose.
However, as we strive to become
free, unique individuals, we still
feel the need for unity with others,
and in trying to balance these
needs we may seek out the comfort
of conforming to a group or an
authority. This is a misguided We can achieve this by following is only possible through respecting
approach, says Fromm; it is our own ideas and passions, and the separateness and uniqueness
imperative to discover ones own through creative purpose, because of ourselves and of another;
independent sense of self, and ones creativity requires the courage to paradoxically, this is how we develop
own personal views and value let go of certainties. the ability to create connectedness.
systems, rather than adhering to One of the critical ways in Love demands a great amount of
conventional or authoritarian norms. which man delivers himself from respect for the other person as an
If we try to hand responsibility for isolation is through his capacity individual, and it is based on
our choices to other people or to love. Fromms concept of love autonomy, not a blending of
institutions we become alienated is vastly different from popular personalities. In our overwhelming
from ourselves, when the very understandings of the word. To desire to connect and unify, we try
purpose of our lives is to dene Fromm, love is not an emotion, nor to love but our relationships often
ourselves through embracing our is it dependent on nding an object result in an unloving imbalance.
personal uniqueness, discovering to love. It is an interpersonal We think we are loving, but in
our own ideas and abilities, and creative capacity that one must reality we may be seeking another
embracing that which differentiates actively develop as part of ones form of conformity. We say I love
each of us from other people. Mans personality. He says it is an you when really we mean I see
main task is to give birth to himself. attitude, an ordination of character me in you, I will become you, or
In doing so, he frees himself from which determines the relatedness I will possess you. In loving, we
confusion, loneliness, and apathy. of the person to the whole world. try to lose our uniqueness, or steal
In terms of personal love for it from the other person. Our
Creativity and love another, Fromm says that the main yearning to exist as one makes
Paradoxically, Fromm believes that tenets are care, responsibility, us want to see ourselves reected
the only way we can nd the sense respect, and knowledgean in other people, which in turn leads
of wholeness we seek is through objective knowledge of what other us to articially impose our own
the discovery of our individuality. people truly want and need. Love traits onto someone else.
The Four Nonproductive Personality Types

Receptive types have no Exploitative types are Hoarding types ght Marketing types
choice but to accept their aggressive and self-centered, to retain what they have, sell everything,
roles, and never ght for and typically engage in acts and are always seeking especially their
change or betterment. of coercion and plagiarism. to acquire more. own image.

The only way to love, says Fromm, most worthy of acceptance, and unremittingly negative, and a sixth
is to love freely, granting the other most likely to result in being loved typethe productive personality
person their full individuality; to or desired. This is futile, because is Fromms ideal. In reality, our
respect the other persons differing only a person who has a strong personalities are generally drawn
opinions, preferences, and belief sense of self, and can stand rmly from a mix of the four main types.
systems. Love is not found by within their own understanding of A person with a receptive
tting one person into anothers the world, is able to give freely to orientation is said to live passively
mold, and it is not a question of others and love in an authentic way. in the status quo, accepting the
nding the perfect match. It is, Those who tend to orient themselves lot handed to them. These people
he says, union with somebody, toward receiving love instead of follow rather than lead; they have
or something, outside oneself, being loving will fail; they will also things done to them. In extremes,
under the condition of retaining seek to establish a receiving this is the stance of the victim, but
the separateness and integrity of relationship in other ways, always on the positive side, it is rich in
ones own self. wanting to be given things devotion and acceptance. Fromm
Many people spend vast amounts material or immaterialrather than compares this type to the peasants
of time and money attempting to to give. These people believe the and migrant workers of history.
cultivate the self that they feel is source of all good things lies The exploitative orientation
outside themselves, and they thrives on taking from others;
constantly feel the need to acquire, exploitative people take what they
though this brings no relief. need instead of earning or creating.
However, they show extreme self-
Personality types condence and strong initiative.
Fromm identied several personality This type is typied by historical
Know thyself is one of types that he called nonproductive, aristocracies who took power and
the fundamental commands because they enable people to wealth from indigenous populations
that aim at human strength avoid assuming true responsibility to line their own pockets.
and happiness. for their actions and prevent Hoarders are always seeking
Erich Fromm productive, personal growth. Each friends in high places and rank even
of the four main nonproductive loved ones in terms of their value,
typesreceptive, exploitative, seeing them as something owned.
hoarding, and marketinghave Power-hungry and ungenerous,
both positive and negative sides. at best they are pragmatic and
A fth type, necrophilous, is economical. Historically, these are
the middle classes, or bourgeoisie,
that rise in great numbers during
economic depressions.
The last of the main types is
the marketing orientation. These
people are obsessed with image
Life has an
and with how to successfully
advertise and sell themselves.
inner dynamism
Every choice is evaluated in terms
of its own; it
of reected status, from the clothes, tends to grow, to be
cars, and vacations they buy to expressed, to be lived.
marriage into the right family. Erich Fromm
At worst, they are opportunistic,
tactless, and shallow; at best, they Erich Fromm
are highly motivated, purposeful,
and energetic. This type is most Erich Fromm was the only
representative of modern society, in child of his orthodox Jewish
parents, and grew up in
its ever-growing acquisitiveness
Frankfurt am Main, Germany.
and self-consciousness. Fromms last personality type, the A thoughtful young man, he
The most negative personality productive orientation, genuinely was initially inuenced by his
typenecrophilousseeks only seeks and nds a legitimate solution Talmudic studies, but later
to destroy. Deeply afraid of the to life through exibility, learning, turned toward Karl Marx and
disorderly and uncontrollable and sociability. Aiming to become socialist theory, together with
nature of life, necrophilous types one with the world and so escape Freuds psychoanalysis. Driven
love to talk about sickness and the loneliness of separation, by the need to understand the
death, and are obsessed with the productive people respond to hostility he witnessed during
need to impose law and order. the world with rationality and an World War I, he studied
They prefer mechanical objects to open mind, willing to change their jurisprudence, then sociology
other people. In moderation, these beliefs in the light of new evidence. (to PhD level), before training
people are pessimistic nay-sayers A productive person can truly love in psychoanalysis. After the
whose glasses are perpetually another for who they are, not as a Nazis took power in Germany
in 1933, Fromm moved to
half empty, never half full. trophy or safeguard against the
Switzerland and then New
world. Fromm calls this brave
York, where he established a
person the man without a mask. psychoanalytic practice and
Fromms work has a unique taught at Columbia University.
perspective, drawing on psychology, Fromm married three times
sociology, and political thinking, and had a well-documented
especially the writings of Karl Marx. affair with Karen Horney
His writing, aimed at a mainstream during the 1930s. In 1951,
audience, inuenced the general he left the US to teach in
public more than academiamainly Mexico, returning 11 years
because of his insistence on the later to become professor
freedom of ideas. He is nonetheless of psychiatry at New York
recognized as a leading contributor University. He died in
to humanistic psychology. Switzerland at the age of 79.

Key works
Hitlers fascination with death
and destruction marks him out as 1941 The Fear of Freedom
an example of Fromms necrophilous 1947 Man for Himself
personality type, which is obsessed 1956 The Art of Loving
with control and the imposition of order.

CARL ROGERS (19021987)

uring the 19th and into mental health is not something
IN CONTEXT the early 20th century, that is suddenly achieved at the
much of the approach to end of a series of steps. Nor is it
psychological treatment was based attained because an individuals
Person-centered therapy
on the idea that mental illness previously neurotic state of
BEFORE was a xed pathological malady tension has been reduced by the
1920s Austrian psychoanalyst that needed to be cured. Popular satisfaction of biological drives and
Otto Rank proposes that psychoanalytic theory, for example, impulses, as the psychoanalysts
separation from outdated dened people struggling with their insisted. Neither is it cultivated
thoughts, emotions, and mental health as neurotic. Mental by following a specic program
behaviors is essential for illness was seen in a negative light designed to develop and preserve
psychological growth and and most psychological practices a state of inner impermeable
development. and theories of the time offered homeostasis, or balance, reducing
strict denitions with structured the effect of the worlds external
1950s Abraham Maslow explanations of the underlying chaos on the self, as the
says that people must not causes of the mental illness, and behaviorists recommended.
be viewed as a collection xed methods to cure it. Rogers does not believe that
of symptoms but rst and American psychologist Carl anyone exists in a defective state
foremost as people. Rogers took a much more esoteric that needs to be xed in order to
route to mental health, and in so provide them with a better state,
AFTER doing expanded the approach of preferring to view human
1960s Fritz Perls popularizes psychotherapy forever. He felt that experience, and our minds and
the concept of externalizing the philosophies of the time were environment, as alive and growing.
other peoples expectations too structured and rigid to account He talks about the ongoing process
to nd ones truest self. for something as dynamic as the of organismic experienceseeing
2004 American humanistic human experience, and that life as instantaneous and ongoing;
psychologist Clark Moustakas humanity is much too diverse to be life exists in the experience of
explores the uniquely human tted into delineated categories. every moment.
For Rogers, a healthy self-
components of life: hope, love,
Achieving mental health concept is not a xed identity
self, creativity, individuality,
Rogers takes the view that it is but a uid and changing entity,
and becoming. absurd to view mental well-being open to possibilities. Rogers
as a specic xed state; good embraces an authentic,

The good life is a process, not a state of being.

In order to enjoy the good life, we need to

take treat ourselves

be fully live in the responsibility and others with
open to present for our unconditional
experience. moment. choices. positive regard.
See also: Fritz Perls 11217 Erich Fromm 12429 Abraham Maslow 13839 Rollo May 141 Dorothy Rowe 154

Martin Seligman 20001

Unlike a maze with only one route across, Rogers

asserts that life is full of possibilities and offers multiple
routesbut individuals are often unable or unwilling
to see them. To experience the good life we need
to stay exible and open to what life brings, by
experiencing it fully moment by moment.

unprescribed, free-owing denition essential ingredient is the ability to the limits of our world and reduce
of healthy human experience, with stay wholly present in the moment. our ability to stay present and open
limitless possibilities. Humans are Since self and personality emerge to experience. In living the good
not traveling a road where the out of experience, it is of the utmost life and remaining open to
destination is to become adjusted importance to stay fully open to experience, Rogers believes we
or actualized, as fellow humanistic the possibilities offered by each adopt a way of being that prevents
psychologist Abraham Maslow moment, and to let experience us feeling trapped and stuck. The
had suggested. Indeed, the purpose shape the self. The individual aim, as Rogers sees it, is for
of existence is not about reaching lives in an environment of constant
any kind of destination, Rogers change, yet frequently and all too
claims, because existence is less easily, people deny this uidity
a journey toward an endpoint and instead create constructs of
and more an ongoing process of how they think things should be.
growth and discovery that does They then try to mold themselves
not stop until we die. and their idea of reality to t the What I will be in the next
constructs they have made. This moment, and what I will do,
Living the good life way of being is the very opposite grows out of the moment,
Rogers uses the phrase living of the uid, owing, and changing and cannot be predicted.
the good life, to refer to the range organization of self that Rogers Carl Rogers
of characteristics, attitudes, and believes the nature of our
behaviors displayed by people who existence requires.
have embraced the foundations of Our preconceptions about
his approachpeople who are how the world is, or should be,
fully in the stream of life. One and our own role within it, dene
range of options as wrong or
inappropriate. The defensive
feelings and thoughts that rise
up in us when reality conicts
with our preconceptions create
a limited, articial interpretation
Self and personality
of experience. In order to really
participate in what Rogers calls
emerge from experience,
the ongoing process of organismic
rather than experience
experience, we need to be fully being translated to t
open to new experience, and be preconceived self-structure.
completely without defensiveness. Carl Rogers

A full range of emotions

By tuning in to our full range of
emotions, Rogers argues, we
allow ourselves a deeper, richer
Spending time working in a experience in every part of our
developing country can be a rewarding lives. We may think we can more comfortable with our
way to open up to new experiences, selectively block emotion, and emotions, including those we have
challenge xed ideas about the world,
dampen down disturbing or deemed to be negative, the ow
and nd out more about ourselves.
uncomfortable feelings, but when of positive feelings emerges more
we repress some of our emotions, strongly; it is as if by permitting
is for experience to be the starting we inevitably turn down the ourselves to feel pain, we allow for
point for the construction of our volume of all our emotions, a more intense experience of joy.
personalities, rather than trying denying ourselves access to the By always remaining open to
to t our experiences into a whole of our nature. If on the other everything that occurs, Rogers
preconceived notion of our sense hand, we allow ourselves to be says that we allow our fullest
of self. If we hold on to our ideas of
how things should be, rather than
A xed view of the world
accepting how they really are, we often leads to unhappiness;
are likely to perceive our needs as we can feel like a square peg
incongruent or mismatched to in a round hole, constantly
what is available. frustrated that our life is not
When the world does not do how we expected it to be.
what we want, and we feel unable Rogers urges us to abandon
our preconceived ideas and
to change our ideas, conict arises
see the world as it really is.
in the form of defensiveness.
Rogers explains defensiveness
as the tendency to unconsciously
apply strategies to prevent a
troubling stimulus from entering
consciousness. We either deny
(block out) or distort (reinterpret)
what is really happening,
essentially refusing to accept
reality in order to stick with our
preconceived ideas. In so doing,
we deny ourselves the full range
of potential reactions, feelings,
and ideas, and we dismiss a wide
abilities to function, and in turn
we can get the greatest satisfaction
from our experiences. We have not
raised our defenses to shut off any
part of the self, so we are able to
experience everything fully. Once
we escape from the rut of the
preconceptions of the mind, we can
allow ourselves to soar. Rather than
organizing our experience to suit
our idea of the world, we discover
structure in experience.
This openness is not for the
faint-hearted, Rogers states; it
requires a level of bravery on the
part of the individual. We dont
need to fear any type of feeling, he
sayswe need only to allow the
full ow of cognition and individual, is famously termed Love that is conditional on an action
experience. With true access to a unconditional positive regard. or situationfor example, on achieving
fuller range of processing Rogers believed that all people, A grades at school or eating the right
foodscan leave children feeling
experience, each of us is more able not just his patients, needed to be
unworthy and unaccepted.
to nd the path that truly suits our able to view themselves in this
authentic selfthis is the fully way, as well as those around them
functioning individual that Rogers and their environment. self-worth and regard for others
urges us to become. We are always Unconditional self-acceptance on achievements or appearance,
growing, and Rogers emphasizes and unconditional acceptance of rather than accepting people
that the direction in which people others are vital, and when these as they are.
movewhen there is freedom to are lacking, people fail to remain Parents may inadvertently
move in any directionis generally open to experience. Rogers teach children that they are
the direction they are best suited maintained that many of worthy of affection only if certain
for, and that is best suited for them. us have very strong, strident, requirements are met, offering
specic conditions that must be them rewards and praise when
Unconditional acceptance met before we will grant approval they eat their vegetables or get
In contrast to the views of many or acceptance. We also base an A grade in physics, but fail
of his predecessors in the eld of to love them openly just for
psychotherapy, Rogers believed themselves. Rogers calls these
that people are, in their essence, requirements conditions of worth,
healthy and good; and that mental believing that the tendency of
and emotional well-being is the humankind to demand that
natural progression for human people and things match our
nature. These beliefs are the No other persons ideas, arbitrary expectations does
foundation of an approach that and none of my own ideas, all of us a great disservice.
regards patients in an entirely are as authoritative Achievements are to be
positive light, one of absolute, as my experience. respected, he says, but they are
unconditional acceptance. Rogers Carl Rogers both separate and secondary
asked that his patients learn to do to acceptance, which is a basic
the same for themselves and for human need, and does not have
others. This perspective, grounded to be earned through deeds
in compassion and the recognition or action. Rogers says that the
of the potential of each and every value of an individual is
realize that each of us is a continual needs. No longer at the mercy of
work-in-progress; that we are in a what he thinks he should be doing,
process of change, as Rogers says nor of what society or parents may
in his seminal work, On Becoming have conditioned him to think he
A Personwe are all in a constant wants, he can much more easily
The subjective human state of becoming. The irony simply exist in the moment and
is that with greater self- be truly aware of what he actually
being has an important
acceptance, and with less wants. And now he can trust
value that no matter unhealthy pressure and constant himself, not because he is
how he may be labeled criticism, we can actually become infallible, but because he can be
and evaluated he is a much more productive. fully open to the consequences of
human person rst of all. each of his actions and correct
Carl Rogers Trusting oneself them if they prove to be less than
To live the good life, as Rogers satisfying, Rogers explains.
sees it, is to learn to trust ourselves. In living the good life we also
As an individual moves toward have a sense of owning our lives
openness, he nds that he and taking responsibility for
simultaneously makes progress in ourselvesthis is another tenet of
his ability to trust himself and his Rogers philosophy and comes from
inherently granted merely by the instincts, and begins to rely more an existential viewpoint. What we
miracle of existence. Acceptance comfortably on his decision-making choose to think or do is down to
must never be thought of as capabilities. With no need to us; there can be no residual
conditional; unconditional positive repress any part of himself, he has resentments when we have truly
regard is key to how we might all a greater ability to tune in to all the identied for ourselves what we
live the good life. parts of himself. This gives him want and need, and taken the steps
As people become more access to a variety of perspectives to create it. At the same time, there
accepting of themselves, they and feelings, and in turn he is is greater accountability and an
also become more patient with better able to evaluate choices that increased tendency to truly invest
themselves. Acceptance alleviates will truly realize his potential. He in our lives. It is not uncommon to
the pressure to do, see, and acquire, is able to see more clearly what hear about a doctor who hates
which builds when we live with the direction his authentic self wishes medicine but practices because his
mistaken idea that these activities to take, and can make choices that parents said that being a doctor
dene our worth. We can begin to are truly in congruence with his was the way to earn respect and

Carl Rogers Carl Rogers was born in Oak Organizations (USO), offering
Park, Illinois, to a strictly therapy to returning army
Protestant family, and apparently personnel during World War II.
had few friends outside the family In 1964, he was awarded
before going to college. Initially, Humanist of the Year by the
Rogers majored in agriculture, American Humanist Association,
but after marrying his childhood and devoted the last ten years
sweetheart, Helen Elliott, in of his life to working for world
1924, he enrolled at a theological peace. He was nominated for
seminary, before withdrawing a Nobel Peace Prize in 1987.
to pursue a course in psychology.
Rogers worked at the universities Key works
of Ohio, Chicago, and Wisconsin,
developing his client-centered 1942 Counseling and
therapy based on humanistic Psychotherapy
psychology. He also spent 1951 Client-centered Therapy
time with the United Service 1961 On Becoming a Person
Teaching a child to ride a bicycle
requires encouragement and support
but ultimately the child must be brave
and trust himself. Rogers likened his
person-centered therapy to this process.

him nd what sort of role he would

really like to take. Rogers describes
the process as supportive, not
reconstructive; the client must
not come to rely on the therapist
for support, but instead needs to
learn how to become sufciently
self-aware and self-trusting to
be independent and able to live
the good life.

Rogers legacy
Rogers was one of the most
inuential psychotherapists of the
20th century, and his new client-
centered, non-directive therapy
marked a turning point in the
approvalboth from them and from healthy and capable of growing development of psychotherapy.
society. In direct contrast, the rates and realizing its potential. This He was instrumental in the
of students who drop out or fail approach was in contrast to the encounter-group philosophy of
university courses are strikingly other main psychological therapies the 1960s, which encouraged
low among those who have have of the timepsychoanalysis and open communication between
received little support but worked behaviorismboth of which individuals. He was responsible
to pay for their own tuition. focus on the pathology of the for the spread of professional
The ways in which people can individual and how to x it. counseling into areas such as
inuence our desires and how we Rogers initially called his education and social work, and was
dene ourselves can be intensely approach client-centered, and then a pioneer in attempting to resolve
complex. Resentment can be changed it to person-centered, and international conict through more
buried deep within us when we it has since been hugely inuential effective communication.
act in accordance with someone in education, parenting, business,
elses wishes rather than our own. and other areas as well as in clinical
If our actions are free of external work. In person-centered therapy,
inuences, we feel more authentic, which Rogers described as non-
more solidly in control of creating directive therapy, the therapist
our own destiny, and more satised takes the role of a facilitator who
with the results. helps the client nd his or her own The process of the
answers, based on the belief that good life means
Person-centered approach the client knows himself best. In launching oneself fully
Rogers philosophy became the person-centered therapy, the client into the stream of life.
cornerstone of a new approach identies his problems and what Carl Rogers
called humanistic psychology, direction the therapy should take.
which he founded in the 1950s For example, the client may not
with Abraham Maslow and Rollo wish to focus on his childhood but
May. It was based on a positive rather deal with issues he is facing
view of humanity as basically at work and the therapist may help


hroughout recorded history, an individual must discover his
IN CONTEXT questions have been posed true purpose in life and pursue it.
about why we are here, Maslow refers to this ultimate state
and what the purpose is of our lives. of being as self-actualization.
Humanist psychology
Underlying these questions is a need
BEFORE to identify what will make us truly Toward self-actualization
1920s Alfred Adler claims satised, and a confusion about Maslow created a highly structured
there is only one motivating how to nd it. Psychoanalysts plan to explain the path of human
force behind all our behavior would claim that the fullment motivation, dening the steps that
and experience: the striving of innate biological drives leads humans need to follow as they
for perfection. toward satisfaction, and move toward self-actualization. His
behaviorists would describe famous Hierarchy of Needs, which
1935 Henry Murray develops the importance of meeting is often drawn as a pyramid,
the Thematic Apperception physiological needs with food, positions the most basic needs at
Test, which measures sleep, and sex, but the new wave the base and each of the other
personality and motivation. of psychotherapeutic thought in essential requirements for a
the early to mid-20th century fullled life in groups on top.
believed that the path to inner Maslows hierarchy is split
1950s Kurt Goldstein denes fulllment was much more complex. into two distinct sections: at the
self-actualization as the One of the main proponents beginning are the four stages that
tendency to actualize, as much of this new approach to the make up the deciency needs and
as possible, the organisms problem was Abraham Maslow, a all of these must be met before a
individual capacities, and psychotherapist who is considered person is able to reach for greater
proclaims that the drive to one of the founders of the humanist intellectual satisfaction through
self-actualize is the only movement in psychology. He the growth needs. The deciency
drive that determines the examined human experience by needs are simple and basic; they
life of an individual. looking at the things that are most include physiological necessities
important to us: love, hope, faith, (such as food, water, and sleep), the
1974 Fritz Perls says that
spirituality, individuality, and need for safety (to be safe and out
every living thing has existence. One of the most crucial of danger), love and belongingness
only one inborn goalto aspects of his theories was that in needs (our need to be close to and
actualize itself as it is. order to reach the most highly accepted by others), and self-esteem
developed state of consciousness requirements (our need to achieve
and realize the greatest potential, in our lives and be recognized).
See also: Alfred Adler 10001 Erich Fromm 12429 Carl Rogers 13037

Rollo May 141 Martin Seligman 20001

The Hierarchy of Needs

Maslows hierarchy
of needs lists the
qualities he observed in
successful individuals
who aimed high but kept
their feet on the ground. Self-transcendence
connecting with
something outside Abraham Maslow
Self-actualization Abraham Maslow was born
Fullling personal potential the eldest of seven children
in Brooklyn, New York.

Aesthetic His parents were Jewish


Order, beauty, symmetry immigrants who had left

Russia for the US to escape

Cognitive the tumultuous political

Knowing, understanding situation there. They had

high expectations of Maslow,


and forced him to study


lawa parental dominance

Achievement, recognition, respect, competence
ie n

that continued until 1928


when Maslow decided to take

Love and Belongingness control of his life and pursue

Acceptance, friendship, intimacy, relationships


psychology instead. In the


same year he disobeyed his

parents by marrying his cousin,
Security, stability, health, shelter, money, employment
Bertha Goodman, with whom
he had two children.
Air, food, drink, sleep, warmth, exercise Maslow moved to the
University of Wisconsin and
worked under Harry Harlow,
the behavioral psychologist
At the higher level, the growth Maslow also proposes that each famous for his work with
needs are cognitive (a need to one of us has an individual purpose primates. Later, at Columbia
know and understand), aesthetic to which we are uniquely suited, University, Maslow found a
(a desire for order and beauty), and and part of the path to fulllment mentor in psychoanalyst
lastly, two requirements that dene is to identify and pursue that and former colleague of
the purpose of life, and lead to purpose. If someone is not doing Freuds, Alfred Adler.
intense spiritual and psychological what they are best suited to do in
fulllment: self-actualization life, it will not matter if all their Key works
and self-transcendence. Self- other needs are fullled, he or she
actualization is the desire for self- will be perpetually restless and 1943 A Theory of Human
fulllment, and self-transcendence unsatised. Each of us must
1954 Motivation and
is the need to move beyond the self, discover our potential, and seek out Personality
and connect to something higher experiences that will allow us to 1962 Toward a Psychology
than ourselvessuch as Godor full itWhat a man can be, of Being
to help others realize their potential. he must be, proclaims Maslow.

VIKTOR FRANKL (19051997)

iennese psychiatrist Viktor painful and possibly devastating
IN CONTEXT Frankl had already begun situations and to move forward;
to specialize in suicide these are the capacity for decision,
prevention and the treatment of and freedom of attitude. Frankl
depression when, in 1942, he and stresses that we are not at the
BEFORE his wife, brother, and parents were mercy of our environment or events,
600500 BCE In India, taken to a concentration camp. He because we dictate how we allow
Gautama Buddha teaches that spent three years there and endured them to shape us. Even suffering
suffering is caused by desire, many horrors and losses before can be seen differently, depending
and can be alleviated by emerging as the only survivor of the on our interpretation of events.
releasing desire. group. In his book Mans Search for Frankl cites the case of one of
Meaning (1946), written after these his patients who suffered because
458 BCE Ancient Greek experiences, Frankl explains that he missed his dead wife. Frankl
dramatist Aeschylus explores humans have two psychological asked how it would have been if
the idea that wisdom comes strengths that allow us to bear the patient had died rst, and he
alone through suffering. replied that his wife would have
found it very difcult. Frankl pointed
out that the patient has spared her
1950s French existentialist this grief, but must now suffer the
philosophers, such as Jean- grief himself. In giving meaning to
Paul Sartre, say our lives do not the suffering it becomes endurable;
have a God-given purpose; we A man who has nothing else suffering ceases to be suffering at
must nd it for ourselves. in this world may still the moment it nds a meaning.
2003 Martin Seligman says know bliss. Meaning is something we
a full life encompasses Viktor Frankl discover rather than invent,
pleasure, engagement (ow), according to Frankl, and we must
and meaning. nd it for ourselves. We nd it
through living, and specically
2007 US psychologist through love, creating things, and
Dan Gilbert explains that the way we choose to see things.
people are unhappy because
of the way they think See also: Rollo May 141 Boris Cyrulnik 15253

about happiness. Martin Seligman 20001



ROLLO MAY (19091994)

n the mid-19th century, enjoy our familiar environments,
IN CONTEXT philosophers such as Martin and favor experiences that keep
Heidegger, Frederick Nietzsche, the mental and physical senses
and Sren Kierkegaard challenged in a state of balance and ease.
Existential psychotherapy
social dogma and demanded that This tendency, however, leads
BEFORE people expand their ways of us to judge and label experiences
1841 Sren Kierkegaard thinking to incorporate a fuller as good or bad, depending
claims that people misinterpret understanding of human experience, only on the levels of pleasure or
Christian ideology and misuse in a movement now known as discomfort they may bring. May
science to falsely defend existentialism. The notions of free says that in doing so, we do
against the anxiety inherent will, personal responsibility, and how ourselves a disservice, since we
in existence. we interpret our experience were are ghting against processes that
all of interest to the existentialists, lead to immense growth and
1942 Swiss physician Ludwig who wanted to ask what it means, development if we can accept
Binswanger combines fundamentally, for a human to exist. them as a natural part of life.
existential philosophy with Psychologist Rollo Mays The May proposes an approach to
psychotherapy in his Basic Meaning of Anxiety (1950) brought life that echoes Buddhist thought,
Forms and the Realization of this human-centered philosophical where we accept all forms of
Human Being-in-the-World. approach into psychology for the rst experience equally, rather than
time, and May is often referred to as shunning or denying those we
1942 Carl Rogers, a pioneer the father of existential psychology. judge to be uncomfortable or
of humanistic psychology, unpleasant. We also need to accept
publishes Counseling and An existential approach our negative feelings, rather than
Psychotherapy. May viewed life as a spectrum avoid or repress them. Suffering
AFTER of human experience, including and sadness are not pathological
1980 Irvin Yalom discusses in suffering as a normal part of life, issues to be xed, he says; they
Existential Psychotherapy the not as a sign of pathology. It is are natural and essential parts of
four ultimate concerns of life: self-evident that as human beings, living a human life, and are also
we tend to seek experiences that important because they lead
death, freedom, existential
allow us to be comfortable. We to psychological growth.
isolation, and meaninglessness.
See also: Sren Kierkegaard 2627 Alfred Adler 100-01 Carl Rogers 13037

Abraham Maslow 13839 Viktor Frankl 140 Boris Cyrulnik 140



Rational Emotive

Behavior Therapy
1927 Alfred Adler says that a

persons behavior springs from
his or her ideas.

1940s The role of perception
in creating reality is
popularized by the Gestalt
Therapy movement.
ALBERT ELLIS (19132007) 1950 Karen Horney suggests
we escape from the tyranny
of the shoulds.
1960s Aaron Beck says that
depression is a result of
unrealistic negative views
about the world.
1980 American psychiatrist
David Burns gives labels to
cognitive distortions such as:
Jumping to Conclusions,
All or Nothing Thinking,
Always Being Right, Over
Generalizing, and

pictetus, an ancient Greek
philosopher, proclaimed in
80 CE, that men are
disturbed not by events, but by the
views which they take of them.
This principle is the foundation of
Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy
(REBT), devised by Dr. Albert Ellis
in 1955, which asserts that
experiences do not cause any
specic emotional reaction; instead
it is the individuals belief system
that produces the reaction.
Practicing as a psychoanalyst in
the 1940s and 50s, Ellis began to
realize that while many of his
patients gained an insight into
See also: Alfred Adler 100101 Karen Horney 110 Erich Fromm 12429 Carl Rogers 130137 Aaron Beck 174177

Martin Seligman 200201

When negative things happen,

we can

react automatically and irrationally take time to consider a response

which reinforces habitual ways and think about new, rational ways
of thinking that may be to respond that may be useful
unhelpful and not benecial to us. and benecial to us.

We become even more convinced that We realize that our negative opinions
our poor opinions of ourselves are unjustied and the world holds
and the world are justied. innite possibilities for us.

themselves and their childhood, especially negative ones, about This is not to say one turns a blind
their symptoms unfortunately events. For example, if a man who eye to negative factors in favor of
remained. It seemed that when one is an irrational thinker loses his job, nave, positive beliefsrational
problem was resolved, the patient to him it is not merely unfortunate, thinking does acknowledge
would put another in its place. but awful. He believes that he is reasonable feelings of sorrow, guilt,
The issue, Ellis decided, lay in the worthless because he was red, and frustration. The rational thinker
way the person was thinking (their and that he will never nd another may lose her job; it may have even
cognition), and it required more job. Ellis describes irrational been her fault that she lost the job,
than insight to change it. beliefs as illogical, extreme, but she knows she is not worthless.
damaging, and self-sabotaging She may be upset with herself, but
Irrational thinking because they cause unhealthy she knows that rationally there is
Ellis began to describe his way emotional consequences. the possibility of another job.
of working as Rational Therapy Rational thinking creates the Rational thinking is balanced and
because he believed that the opposite effect. Ellis denes always allows room for optimism
majority of long-standing emotional rational thinking as helpful to the and possibilities; it creates healthy
problems are almost always due to self. It is based on tolerance and emotional consequences.
irrational thinking. One of the most the ability to bear distress without Elliss notion of irrational
common ways in which irrationality assuming catastrophic negative thinking is inuenced by Karen
occurs, he says, is the tendency to conclusions, and is rooted in a Horneys idea of the tyranny of
draw extreme conclusions, belief in positive human potential. the shouldsa preoccupation
reaction becomes inextricably
linked to the event itself. However,
Ellis aimed to teach people to
recognize how an event may
contribute to a feeling, but it does
not directly cause that feeling. Our
People and things do
emotional response depends on
not upset us. Rather, we the meaning we put on what took
upset ourselves by place, which in turn is governed
believing that they by rational or irrational thinking.
can upset us. As the name implies, Rational
Albert Ellis Emotive Behavior Therapy
examines both the emotional
If someone has been unlucky
response (a cognitive process) and in love they may feel sad and rejected.
the behavior. The links between However, there is a difference between
these two ow in both directions: feeling these emotions and allowing
it is possible to change your them to become a belief system.
thinking through changing your
with the idea that something behavior, and to change your to irrational responses. This
should (magically) be different from behavior through changing your process is known as disputing.
how it is. The struggle to reconcile thinking. Ellis suggests that the For instance, some people hold the
these thoughts with reality is a way to change ones thinking belief that I am the only really
painful and unending one. Rational involves being able to recognize dependable person I know or I am
thinking, on the other hand, focuses and then dispute irrational destined to be always alone in this
on acceptance; it maintains the beliefs, challenging them with world. In therapy, the individual is
balanced sense that sometimes rational thoughts. encouraged to search their personal
things happen that we would prefer history to nd rationalizations for
not to, but they are a part of life. Challenging beliefs these belief systems. Someone who
During REBT, an individual is has been through the break-up of
Conditioned response asked to consider whether they several relationships may have the
We become so used to our responses have several overriding beliefs delusion that it is their destiny to
to people and events that they about themselves and their be alone or that they are somehow
appear to be almost automatic; our position in life as these contribute unlovable. REBT encourages

Albert Ellis Albert Ellis was born in Pittsburgh, considered to have led the shift
Pennsylvania. His father was toward cognitive behavioral
often away on business and his therapy. He is recognized as
mother suffered from bipolar one of the most inuential
disease; Ellis frequently took psychologists in the US. He
care of his three younger siblings. wrote more than 70 books,
Ellis began a career in business continuing to write and teach
and then became an author, until his death at the age of 93.
before his writing on sexuality
led him to start studying clinical Key works
psychology at Columbia University
in 1942. Initially, Ellis practiced 1957 How to Live with a
psychoanalysis and was inuenced Neurotic
by Sigmund Freud, Albert Adler, 1961 A Guide to Rational Living
and Erich Fromm. However, his 1962 Reason and Emotion in
Rational Therapy broke away from Psychotherapy
psychoanalytic theory and is 1998 Optimal Aging
people to allow for the pain of loss choose healthier pathways; and
or loneliness, and to logically how to internalize and habituate
evaluate factors that led to the loss; new, more benecial beliefs. In
but discourages the practice of so doing, the therapist becomes
believing that one or two instances obsoleteonce the client grasps
mean that something will always the idea of becoming self-aware
The best years of your life are
happen, and therefore being happy in decision-making, and choosing
is impossible. deliberately (and often differently),
the ones in which you decide
One of the difculties inherent the therapist is no longer needed.
your problems are your own
in irrational thinking is that it tends You realize that you control
to perpetuate itself, because in An active therapy your own destiny.
thinking, for instance, nothing Albert Elliss theories challenged Albert Ellis
good ever happens to me, there the slow-moving methodology of
is little or no motivation to seek psychoanalysis and created the
opportunities where good things rst form of cognitive behavioral
might happen. The irrational therapy, an approach that is popular
thinker sees the possibilities of today. He was an active and
having a good experience as so directive therapist and in place of
unlikely that he gives up searching long-term, passive psychoanalysis, action, action, he said. REBT
for them. It also makes him blind he put the work and power squarely became one of the most popular
to the good things that do happen. in the hands of the clientan therapies of the 1970s and 80s, and
Many people express the self- approach that pregured Carl was highly inuential on the work
perpetuating belief: Yes, I have Rogers. He also emphasized that of Aaron Beck, who described Ellis
tried, and I know that good things theorizing was not enoughyou as an explorer, revolutionary,
never happen, which rationalizes have to back it up with action, therapist, theorist, and teacher.
and reinforces their belief system.
Irrational thinking is black and
REBT identies the Adversity: An event that
white; it stops an individual from patterns of irrational may cause mental distress.
recognizing the full spectrum of thinking that lead to
possible experiences. If a faulty unhealthy and entrenched
belief system leads us to always beliefs, and describes Ive lost my job!
interpret situations negatively, how to challenge them.
then it prevents the possibility
of alternate positive experiences. Beliefs: The initial
Though it often appears that seeing (irrational) thoughts Consequences: The feelings
is believing, the reality is that about the event. caused by these beliefs.
what we believe is what we see.
Im worthless. Im depressed
Constructivist theory Ill never get and anxious.
REBT is a constructivist theory, another job!
suggesting that although our
preferences are inuenced by
our upbringing and culture, we
construct our own beliefs and Disputation: Taking Effect: Revised and rational
reality. As a therapy, it attempts a rational look at beliefs. beliefs about the event.
to reveal peoples inexible and
absolutist thoughts, feelings, and Ill be able to get
actions; and helps them see how Hang on, Im looking
at this all wrong! another jobits not
they are choosing to disturb that bad.
themselves, as Ellis puts it. It
suggests how to think of and


he role that a person
IN CONTEXT assumes in their family
We learn to react in of origin (the family they
certain ways to the grew up in) tends to be the seed
Family therapy
members of our family. from which the adult will grow.
BEFORE American psychologist Virginia
1942 Carl Rogers publishes Satir recognized the importance
Counseling and Psychotherapy, that the original family plays in
emphasizing the role of respect shaping personality, and looked
and a nonjudgmental approach at differences between a healthy,
in mental health treatment. functioning family and one that
These reactions shape was dysfunctional. She was
AFTER a role that we adopt, especially interested in the roles
1953 US psychiatrist Harry especially when under stress. that people tend to adopt in order
Stack Sullivan publishes to compensate when healthy
The Interpersonal Theory dynamics are lacking between
of Psychiatry, which states family members.
that people are products A healthy family life involves
of their environment. open and reciprocated displays
of affection, and expressions of
1965 Argentinian-born This role may positive regard and love for one
psychiatrist Salvador overwhelm our authentic another. More than any previous
Minuchin brings family self and be taken with us therapist, Satir emphasized the
therapy to prominence at into adulthood. power that compassionate,
the Philadelphia Child nurturing relationships have in
Guidance Clinic. developing well-adjusted psyches.
1980 Italian psychiatrist Mara
Selvini Palazzoli and her Role playing
When family members lack the
colleagues publish articles
The family is the ability to openly express emotion
about their Milan systems
factory where and affection, Satir suggested that
approach to family therapy.
people are made. personality roles tend to emerge
in place of authentic identities. She
noted ve commonly played roles
See also: Carl Rogers 13037 Lev Vygotsky 270 Bruno Bettelheim 271

The Five Family Roles

Five distinct
personality roles,
according to Satir,
are commonly
played out by
individual family
members in order
to cover up difcult
emotional issues.
Distractor Computer Leveler Blamer Placator

that individual family members are believed that in order to cast aside
likely to adopt, especially in times these false identities, whether as Virginia Satir
of stress. These are: the family children or as adults, we must
member who constantly nds accept self-worth as a birthright. Virginia Satir was born on
fault and criticizes (the blamer); Only then will it be possible to start a farm in Wisconsin and
the non-affectionate intellectual moving toward a truly fullling is said to have decided she
(the computer); the person who existence. This begins with a wanted to be a detective of
stirs things up in order to shift the commitment to straightforward, peoples parents at the age
of six. Losing her hearing for
focus away from emotional issues open, and honest communication.
two years due to an illness
(the distractor); the apologetic The need for basic, positive, helped to make her acutely
people-pleaser (the placator); emotional connections lies at the observant of nonverbal
and the open, honest, and direct root of Satirs pioneering work. She communication, and gave her
communicator (the leveler). believed that love and acceptance a sensitive insight into human
Only levelers maintain a are the most potent healing forces behavior. Her father was an
healthy, congruent position, with for any dysfunctional family. By alcoholic, and she was well
their inner feelings matching their fostering close, compassionate aware of the dynamics of
communications with the rest of relationships with her patients, caretaking, blaming, and
the family. Others adopt their she mimicked the dynamic she pleasing that went on around
various roles because low self- was encouraging them to adopt. her during her own childhood.
esteem makes them afraid to Satir trained as a teacher,
show or share their true feelings. but her interest in problems of
Placators are afraid of disapproval; self-esteem in children led her
blamers attack others to hide to take a masters degree in
social work. She set up the rst
feelings of unworthiness;
formal family therapy training
computers rely on their intellect program in the US and the
to stop them acknowledging their By knowing how to heal
Satir Model is still hugely
feelings; and distractersoften the the family, I know how to inuential in personal and
youngest in the familybelieve heal the world. organizational psychology.
they will only be loved if they are Virginia Satir
seen as cute and harmless. Key works
These adopted roles may allow
the family to function, but they can 1964 Conjoint Family Therapy
overwhelm each individuals ability 1972 Peoplemaking
to be his or her authentic self. Satir

TIMOTHY LEARY (19201996)

imothy Leary was an thought we should do is Drop Out,
IN CONTEXT American psychologist by which he meant that we should
who became an iconic detach ourselves from articial
gure of the 1960s counterculture, attachments and become self-reliant
Experimental psychology
coining possibly the most widely in thought and deed. Unfortunately,
BEFORE used catchphrase linked with that Drop Out has been misinterpreted
1890s William James says era: Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out. as urging people to halt productivity,
that the self has four layers: However, the order in which which was never his intention.
the biological, the material, Leary wished us to do these three Next, Leary tells us to Turn
the social, and the spiritual. things is slightly different. He felt On, or delve into our unconscious,
that society was polluted by politics, and nd a sacrament which
1956 Abraham Maslow and made up of sterile, generic returns you to the temple of God,
stresses the importance of communities that do not allow the your own body. This is a command
peak experiences in the depth of meaning needed by true to explore deeper layers of reality, as
route to self-actualization. individuals. The rst thing he well as the many levels of experience
and consciousness. Drugs were one
AFTER way to do this, and Leary, a Harvard
1960s British psychiatrist professor, began experimenting
Humphry Osmond coins the with the hallucinogenic drug LSD.
term psychedelic to describe To Tune In, Leary asks us to
the emotional effects of the return to society with a new vision,
drugs LSD and mescaline. seeking fresh patterns of behavior
1962 In his Good Friday that reect our transformation, and
Experiment, US psychiatrist to teach others our newfound ways.
and theologian Walter Pahnke
tests if psychedelic drugs can The psychedelic movement of the
deepen religious experience. 1960s was heavily inuenced by Learys
call to create a better, more satisfying
1972 US psychologist Robert society by exploring the unconscious to
E. Ornstein argues in The uncover our true emotions and needs.
Psychology of Consciousness
that only personal experience See also: William James 3845 Abraham Maslow 13839
can unlock the unconscious.


sychotherapy often relies of cause and effect. Watzlawick
IN CONTEXT heavily on patients gaining was drawn to the idea of circular
an understanding of causality of human behavior, which
themselves, their history, and their shows people tend to return to the
Brief therapy
behavior. This is based on the same actions again and again.
BEFORE belief that to counter emotional pain Insight, Watzlawick suggested,
1880s Psychodynamic and change behavior, we need to may even cause blindness, both to
therapy, also known as insight- understand where our emotional the real problem and its potential
oriented therapy, emerges. patterns are rooted. Austrian- solution. He supported the brief
It focuses on unconscious American psychologist Paul therapy approach, which targets
processes as manifested in Watzlawick described this process and tackles specic problems more
a persons present behavior. as insight. For example, a man directly in order to achieve quicker
who grieves for an abnormally long results. But he also felt that for any
1938 B.F. Skinner introduces time after his partner leaves him therapy to succeed, it must offer the
radical behaviorism, which might come to realize that he has patient a supportive relationship.
does not accept that thinking, deep issues with abandonment,
perception, or any other kind because his mother left him when
of unobservable emotional he was a child. But a number of
activity can trigger a particular therapists have concluded that
pattern of behavior. insight may be unnecessary to
counter emotional pain, and some,
AFTER including Watzlawick, have claimed Anybody can be happy, but
1958 American psychiatrist that it can make a patient worse. to make oneself unhappy
Leopold Bellak sets up a brief Watzlawick famously stated he needs to be learned.
therapy clinic, where therapy could not think of a single case in Paul Watzlawick
is limited to a maximum of which someone changed as a result
ve sessions. of a deepening understanding of self.
1974 US psychotherapist The belief that understanding past
events helps to shed light on present
Jay Haley publishes
problems is based on a linear view
Uncommon Therapy,
describing Milton Ericksons See also: B.F. Skinner 7885 Elizabeth Loftus 20207 Milton Erickson 336
brief therapy techniques.


R.D. LAING (19271989)

Mental illness is not
biological; it is developed Psychosis is a valid
APPROACH and understandable
Anti-psychiatry through difcult
social interactions. expression of distress.
1908 Swiss psychiatrist
Eugen Bleuler coins the term
schizophrenia to refer to the
splitting of mental functions.
1911 Sigmund Freud proposes Psychiatry wrongly
Mental illness should be
that schizophrenia is purely stigmatizes mental illness
valued as a cathartic and
because it does not
psychological, though it transformative experience.
conform to social norms.
cannot be treated with
1943 French philosopher
Jean-Paul Sartre introduces Madness need not be all
the distinction between the breakdown. It may also be
true self and the false self. break-through.
1956 Gregory Bateson, British
social scientist, denes a

double bind as an emotionally t the end of the 19th in dire circumstances. It was from
distressing dilemma in which century, the notion that this context that R.D. Laing emerged
all the potential resolutions mental illness was as the preeminent icon of a new
lead to negative consequences. different in degreerather than cultural trend.
in kindfrom the psychological
AFTER suffering of normal people began Biology and behavior
1978 CT brain scans reveal to gain acceptance. Sigmund Freud Like Freud, Laing challenged the
physical differences between suggested that neurosis and fundamental values of psychiatry,
chronic schizophrenics and normality are part of the same rejecting its focus on mental illness
non-schizophrenics. scale, and that anyone is capable of as a biological phenomenon and
succumbing to mental disturbance highlighting the signicance of the
See also: Emil Kraepelin 31 Sigmund Freud 9299 David Rosenhan 32829

social, cultural, and familial also hinder the ability to think, and
inuences that shape personal as a result interfere with the natural
experience. Although he never process of true recovery.
denied the grim reality of mental
illness, his views were in stark Approach to schizophrenia
contrast to the accepted medical Laings main work centers on the
basis and practice of psychiatry. understanding and treatment of
Laings work calls into question schizophreniaa serious mental
the validity of psychiatric diagnosis disorder characterized by severe
on the grounds that the accepted disruptions in psychological
process of diagnosing mental functioningand on explaining it R.D. Laing
disorders does not follow the to ordinary people. Schizophrenia,
traditional medical model. Doctors he says, is not inherited, but is Ronald David Laing was born
perform examinations and tests to an understandable reaction to in Glasgow, Scotland. After
studying medicine at Glasgow
diagnose physical illness, whereas unlivable situations. He applies
University, he became a
psychiatric diagnosis is based on social scientist Gregory Batesons psychiatrist in the British
behavior. According to Laing, there theory of the double bind, in Army, developing an interest
is also an inherent problem in which a person is put into situations in working with the mentally
diagnosing mental illness based on where he or she faces conicting distressed. He later trained at
conduct, but treating it biologically expectations, and every action the Tavistock Clinic, London,
with drugs. If a diagnosis is based leads to negative consequences, England. In 1965, Laing and a
on behavior, then so too should be resulting in extreme mental distress. group of colleagues created the
the treatment. He argues that drugs Philadelphia Association and
Illness as breakthrough started a radical psychiatric
Laing was revolutionary in viewing project at Kingsley Hall,
the abnormal behavior and London, where patients and
confused speech of schizophrenics therapists lived together.
as valid expressions of distress. For Laings erratic behavior
and spiritual preoccupations
him, psychotic episodes represent
in later life led to a decline in
attempts to communicate concerns,
his reputation. As he was
and should be seen as cathartic unable to develop a workable
and transformative experiences alternative to conventional
that could lead to important medical treatment, his ideas
personal insights. Laing accepts are not generally accepted by
that these expressions are difcult the psychiatric establishment.
to comprehend, but he explains Yet his contributions to the
that this is merely because they anti-psychiatry movement,
are wrapped in the language of particularly in family therapy,
personal symbolism, which is only have had a lasting impact. He
meaningful from within. Laings died of a heart attack in 1989.
drug-free psychotherapy tries
to make sense of a patients Key works
symbolism by listening in an
1960 The Divided Self
attentive and empathetic spirit.
Shakespeares King Lear is an 1961 The Self and Others
iconic example of a man driven mad This is based on the belief that 1964 Sanity, Madness and
by difcult circumstances. In Laings people are healthy in their natural the Family
view, Lears madness is an attempt to state, and that so-called mental 1967 The Politics of Experience
return to his natural, healthy, state. illness is an attempt to return to it.


APPROACH You can feel ...and
Positive psychology crushed and continue to
inadequate... suffer.
1920s Freud says that early Bad things
trauma negatively impacts happen.
an infants brain and can
override any genetic, social, or
psychological resilience factor. You can ...and move
accept the forward with
195595 A longitudinal study challenge... your life.
by psychologist Emmy Werner
following traumatized children
into adulthood suggests that
one-third of the population

tends toward resilience. hen tragedy strikes, unable to cope, somehow they
some people are are able to deal with painful
1988 John Bowlby asks for
devastated. Unable to circumstances and move on.
a study of resilience.
summon their coping mechanisms, Boris Cyrulnik is interested
AFTER they fall into deep depression or in this difference of reaction. To
2007 The UK government despondency, sometimes losing nd out why some people are so
starts the UK Resilience hope and even the will to carry deeply affected, while others are
Programme in schools. on. They may become entirely seemingly able to bounce back,
preoccupied with the disaster he has devoted his career to the
2012 The American and suffer nightmares, ashbacks, study of psychological resilience.
Psychological Association and anxiety attacks. Other people, Resilience is not a quality
forms a task force on however, react differently. They inherent within a person, Cyrulnik
psychological resilience. seem to manage not only the normal found, but one that builds through a
ups and downs of their lives, but natural process. He says that alone,
also potentially overwhelming a child has no resilience it is an
losses and traumas. Instead interaction, a relationship. We build
of becoming depressed and resilience from developing
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 John Bowlby 27477 Charlotte
Bhler 336 George Kelly 337 Jerome Kagan 339

After disasters such as tsunamis

psychologists have witnessed the
formation of resilient communities,
characterized by the residents
determination to overcome adversity.

has happened, to nd strength in

the experience instead of letting it
defeat them, and to use the strength
to move deantly forward. Given
the right support, children are Boris Cyrulnik
especially capable of complete
recovery from trauma. Cyrulnik has Boris Cyrulnik was born to
shown that the human brain is Jewish parents in Bordeaux,
France, shortly before the
relationships. We are constantly malleable and will recover if
outbreak of World War II. In
knitting ourselves from people allowed. The brain of a traumatized 1944, when the Vichy regime
and situations that we encounter, child shows shrinkage of the controlled unoccupied southern
through the words we exchange ventricles and cortex, but where the France by arrangement with
and the feelings that arise. We child is well supported and loved Germany, his home was raided
might feel that if one stitch is after the trauma, brain scans have and his parents were taken to
dropped, our lives will unravel. In shown the brain to be capable of Auschwitz concentration
fact, if just one stitch holds, we returning to normal within a year. camp. His parents had placed
can start all over again. Cyrulnik stresses the importance him with a foster family for
Positive emotions and humor are of not labeling children who have safety, but within days they
key factors in resilience. Cyrulniks suffered a trauma, thereby sidelining turned him over to the
research has shown that people who them to a seemingly hopeless future. authorities for a small reward.
are better able to cope with lifes Trauma consists of the injury and He escaped while awaiting
difculties or traumas are able to the representation of that injury. transfer to a concentration
camp and worked on farms
nd meaning in hardship, seeing it Enduring humiliating adult
until the age of ten, when he
as a useful and enlightening interpretations of events can be the
was taken into care. He grew
experience, and even to nd ways most traumatic experience. Labels, up in France, without any
to laugh. Resilient people always he says, can be more damaging and relatives. Largely self-taught,
remain able to see how things may damning than the experience. Cyrulnik eventually studied
turn out for the better in future, even medicine at the University of
if the present is painful. Paris. Realizing he wanted to
reevaluate his own life, he
Meeting the challenge began to study psychoanalysis
It had previously been thought that and later neuropsychiatry.
people who show more resilience He has devoted his career
are less emotional in general, but Resilience is a persons to working with traumatized
Cyrulnik believed that the pain is ability to grow in the face children.
no less for resilient people than it is of terrible problems.
for others; it is a matter of how they Boris Cyrulnik Key works
choose to use it. The pain may
1992 The Dawn of Meaning
continue, even over a whole lifetime, 2004 The Whispering
but for these people it raises a of Ghosts
challenge that they decide to meet. 2009 Resilience
The challenge is to overcome what


f people could stop blaming the idea of a Just World and think
IN CONTEXT themselves for things that more rationally about negative
have happened in their lives, experiences. We might suffer from
the rate of depression would bad parenting, job loss, or even a
Personal construct theory
decrease dramatically. This premise devastating tornado, but these
BEFORE is the foundation of Dorothy Rowes things did not happen because we
1940s Gestalt therapy is success in treating the problem. are doomed to misfortune, nor do
founded, introducing the We are generally brought up to we deserve to be treated badly.
notion that perception believe that the world is a fair and To recover from these setbacks,
inuences meaning. rational place; that if we are good, we need to stop personalizing
good things will happen to us. But events, start externalizing them,
1955 George Kelly publishes if things go well when we are good, and realize that sometimes bad
The Psychology of Personal what does that say about us when things just happen.
Constructs, outlining the things go wrong? Our belief in a
theory that everyone has a set Just Worldwhere the good are
of constructs (beliefs) about rewarded and the bad punished
the world and the people in it. makes us blame ourselves for the
bad things that happen to us.
1960 Psychologist and When we are wronged or hurt in
statistician Max Hamilton some way, there is a tendency to ask, To turn natural
constructs the Hamilton Why did this happen to me? People sadness into depression,
Depression Rating Scale look back to see what they did to all you have to do is blame
(HAM-D), a tool used to cause the situation, even in the case yourself for the disaster
measure clinical depression. of a natural disaster. Self-blame, guilt, that has befallen you.
AFTER helplessness, and shame irrationally Dorothy Rowe
arise when bad things happen, and
1980 Psychologist Melvin
these can lead to depression.
Lerner publishes The Belief in
Rowe explained that we create
a Just World: A Fundamental
and choose our beliefs. Once we
Delusion, explaining how we understand this, we can let go of
wrongly believe that people
get what they deserve. See also: Fritz Perls 11217 Carl Rogers 13037 Albert Ellis 14245

Melvin Lerner 24243 George Kelly 337



efore French-Canadian
IN CONTEXT analyst Guy Corneau
published Absent Fathers,
Lost Sons in 1991, psychology had
Masculine psychology
given little attention to emotional
BEFORE communication between men.
1900s Freudian analysts Corneaus book examined the
describe the Oedipus complex, difculties of intimate conversations
which states that sons feel between the male generations. He
naturally competitive with recounts his attempts to make an Communication between fathers and
emotional connection with his sons is often characterized by silences.
their father. While sons long for recognition and
own father: reaching out, seeking
1950s French psychoanalyst approval from their fathers, fathers are
approval, but receiving only silence.
reluctant to give this approval freely.
Jacques Lacan argues that
the son sees the father as Withholding approval
embodying the law. Corneau recognizes that this compromising his own power,
sequence of events is a familiar making it less valuable. From the
AFTER pattern in men, who are often sons point of view, if approval is
1991 In Iron John: A Book unable to shower their sons with given too easily, without some
About Men, American author the praise, affection, or recognition degree of withholding, the father is
Robert Bly says that fathers craved by their offspring. When the then no longer worthy of impressing.
fail to give their sons what son experiences this silence, he It appears that in most forms of
they need to become men, may try harder to impress, or he society there is a belief that men
and suggests that they might withdraw, but the silence cannot be both strong and open.
need to reawaken the remains irrevocably imprinted in Corneau says that this behavior
Wild Man within. his mind, according to Corneau. does a disservice to men. They are
The phenomenon may stem from denied the opportunity to express
1990s American writers
a competitive interplay of male affection toward their sonsand
Douglas Gillette and Robert egos; a man who showers his son the sons are forced to go without
L. Moore publish ve books with praise would somehow be that affection.
exploring Jungian archetypes
and the male psyche. See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Carl Jung 10207 Jacques Lacan 12223

Jerome Bruner and Cecile Alan Turing publishes

Goodman publish Value Computing Machinery
Hermann Ebbinghauss and Need as Organizing and Intelligence, in which Leon Festingers A
nonsense syllables Factors in Perception, he describes the human Theory of Cognitive
experiments show a arguing that motivated brain as an organized Dissonance suggests
method for studying reasoning affects machine that learns there is a human drive for
cognitive processes. perception. through experience. consistency of beliefs.

1885 1947 1950 1957

1932 1949 1956 1958

Frederic Bartlett studies Donald Hebb explains George Armitage Donald Broadbent
reconstructive learning in terms of Miller argues that the publishes Perception and
memory in The War of connections between human brain can only Communication,
the Ghosts. stimuli and neurons. hold seven chunks introducing the
of information information-processing
at once. model of cognition.

he rst half of the 20th psychologya German school of to work from. At the same time,
century was dominated by thought that concentrated on advances in neuroscience led to a
two strands of thinking in perception and perceptual greater understanding of the
psychology: behaviorism (which organizationand was also a functions of the brain and nervous
concentrated on learning theory) precursor of cognitive psychology. system. This allowed psychologists,
and psychoanalysis (which focused notably Donald Hebb, to examine
on the unconscious and development The cognitive revolution mental processes directly, rather
in early childhood). The mental What eventually swung the balance than merely inferring them from
processes that had preoccupied from interest in behavior to the observations of behavior.
psychologists in the previous study of mental processes came from One of the rst to apply the
century, such as perception, outside psychology. Improvements information-processing analogy to
consciousness, and memory, in communications and computer psychology was a student of Frederic
were largely neglected. technology, and possibilities opened Bartletts at Cambridge, Donald
There were inevitably some up by articial intelligencethen Broadbent, who had been inspired
exceptions. Psychologists Frederic a growing eld thanks to advances by the work of computer scientist
Bartlett of the UK and Bluma made during World War IIled to Alan Turing and communications
Zeigarnik of Russia were both a new way of thinking about the expert Colin Cherry in the 1940s
studying the process of memory in brain: as an information processor. and 50s. But the turning point came
the 1920s and 30s, anticipating the The mental processes, referred to in the US, where behaviorism
work of later cognitive psychologists. as cognitive processes or began to be criticized for its
In Germany, Wolfgang Khlers cognition, which behaviorism limitations, leading to a so-called
work on problem-solving and would not or could not examine, cognitive revolution in the late
decision-making drew on Gestalt now had a model for psychologists 1950s. In the vanguard of this

Endel Tulving Aaron Beck outlines Gordon H. Bower Elizabeth Loftuss book
produces a series cognitive behavior reports experiments Eyewitness Testimony
of seminal papers therapy (CBT) in that suggest memory exposes the fallibility
on memory and Depression: Causes retrieval is of eyewitness
retrieval processes. and Treatment. mood-dependent. memory as evidence.

1960S 1967 1978 1996

1967 1971 1992 2001

Ulric Neisser coins Roger Shepard and In Facial Expressions of In The Seven Sins
the term cognitive Jacqueline Metzler Emotion, Paul Ekman of Memory, Daniel
psychology in his publish research suggests that certain facial Schacter details
book of the same title. showing that people are expressions are universal ways our
able to mentally rotate a and therefore biological. memories can
3-D object. be erroneous.

dramatic shift of approach were the Loftus, Daniel Schacter, and behavioral therapy and meditation
Americans George Armitage Miller Gordon H. Bower. There was also a techniques, soon became standard
and Jerome Bruner, who in 1960 reappraisal of Gestalt psychology: treatment for disorders such as
co-founded the Center for Cognitive Roger Shepard reexamined ideas of depression and anxiety, and led to
Studies at Harvard University. perception, and Wolfgang Khlers a movement of positive psychology
work on problem-solving and advocating mental wellbeing rather
A new direction decision-making resurfaced in the than just treating mental illness.
Miller and Bruners ground-breaking theories of Daniel Kahneman and At the beginning of the 21st
work led to a fundamental change Amos Tversky. And, perhaps for the century, cognitive psychology is
of direction in psychology. Areas rst time, cognitive psychologists, still the dominant approach to the
that had been neglected by including Bower and Paul Ekman, subject, and has had an effect on
behaviorists, such as memory, made a scientic study of emotion. neuroscience, education, and
perception, and emotions, became But it wasnt only the theories of economics. It has even inuenced
the central focus. While Bruner behaviorists that were overturned; the naturenurture debate; in the
incorporated the concepts of Freuds psychoanalytic theory and light of recent discoveries in
cognition into existing theories its followers were also criticized for genetics and neuroscience,
of learning and developmental being unscientic. Aaron Beck evolutionary psychologists such
psychology, Millers application of found that cognitive psychology as Steven Pinker have argued
the information-processing model could provide a more effective that our thoughts and actions are
to memory opened up the eld, therapyand that it was more determined by the make-up of our
making memory an important area amenable to objective scrutiny. The brains, and that they are like other
of study for cognitive psychologists, cognitive therapy he advocated, inherited characteristics: subject
including Endel Tulving, Elizabeth later incorporating elements of to the laws of natural selection.


If a chimp tries to solve it pauses and
APPROACH considers the problem,
a problem using trial and
Gestalt psychology error, but fails taking into account
everything around it
1890 Austrian philosopher
Christian von Ehrenfels
introduces the concept
of Gestalt in his book, It then applies this solution until it reaches an
On the Qualities of Form. to similar problems insight that leads
in the future. to a solution.
1912 Max Wertheimer
publishes Experimental
Studies of the Perception
of Movement, a landmark
in Gestalt psychology. This pattern of insight-
learning is active, Instinct is a
AFTER dynamic pattern.
1920s Edward Tolman brings not passive.
together ideas from Gestalt
and behaviorist psychology in
his purposive behaviorism

n the late 19th century, a group Gestalt psychology (not to be
(now cognitive behaviorism). of German psychologists who confused with Gestalt therapy,
1935 Psychology of disagreed with the prevailing a much later development) took
Productive Thinking by Karl schools of thought developed a new, as its starting point the idea that
Dunckera German Gestalt scientic, and distinctly holistic concepts such as perception,
approach, which they called Gestalt. learning, and cognition should be
Wolfgang Khler, who founded the considered as wholes, not studied
experiments in problem-
new movement along with Max by investigating their various parts.
solving and mental
Wertheimer and Kurt Koffka, Khler thought the dominant
restructuring. explained that the word means branch of psychology, behaviorism,
both pattern and, when applied to was too simplistic and overlooked
their theory, organized whole. the dynamic nature of perception.
See also: Ivan Pavlov 6061 Edward Thorndike 6265 Edward
Tolman 7273 Max Wertheimer 335

behavior showed a cognitive trial-

and-error process rather than an
actual one; they were solving the
problem in their minds rst, and
only after an insight (the aha
moment) tried out their solution.
This is contrary to the behaviorist
view that learning is conditioned
by response to a stimulus, and
reinforced by reward. The chimps
learned by perceiving the problem, Wolfgang Khler
Khler studied chimpanzees solving not by receiving rewards.
task-related problems. He realized they This was a demonstration Wolfgang Khler was born in
could actively perceive several possible of Khlers dynamic model of Estonia, but his family returned
solutions before nding the answer to their native Germany soon
behavior, involving organization
through a moment of insight. after his birth. He studied at
within perception, rather than various colleges before
passive learning through response completing a PhD in Berlin.
Pavlov and Thorndike claimed that to rewards. The pattern (Gestalt) In 1909, he and Kurt Koffka
animals learn by trial and error of learning by insightfailure, worked with Max Wertheimer
through simple stimulusresponse pause, perception, insight, and at the Frankfurt Academy on
conditioning, but Khler believed attemptis an active one; but his perception experiments;
they were capable of insight and this is not necessarily apparent to these formed the basis of
intelligence. He was able to put this someone watching the chimps Gestalt psychology.
to the test when he became director separate attempts to solve the In 1913, Khler became
of an anthropoid research center on problem, mainly because it is not director of the Prussian
Tenerife from 191320, where he possible to see the organization of Academy of Sciences research
studied chimpanzees tackling a perception in the chimps mind. station in Tenerife, where he
number of problem-solving tasks. What we call instinct, the became stranded at the start
of World War I, remaining
apparently automatic response to
there until 1920. On his return
Insightful learning solving a problem, is affected by this
to Berlin, he served as director
What Khler observed conrmed his process of insight learning, and is of the Psychological Institute
belief, and also demonstrated that itself an active, dynamic pattern. until 1935, when he emigrated
problem-solving and learning could to the US to escape the Nazi
be explained in terms of Gestalt. regime. He taught at several
When faced with a problem, such as US colleges, and was elected
how to reach food in an inaccessible president of the American
place, the chimpanzees were Psychological Association for
frustrated in their initial attempts, 1959. Ulric Neisser described
but would then pause and apparently Insight has the appearance him as a genuinely creative
take stock of the situation before of a complete solution with thinker as well as a person of
attempting some kind of solution. reference to the whole great dignity and honor.
This often involved using tools layout of the eld.
such as sticks or crates that were Wolfgang Khler Key works
lying around in their play areato
1917 The Mentality of Apes
reach the food. When subsequently 1929 Gestalt Psychology
faced with the same problem, they 1938 The Place of Values in
instantly applied the same solution. a World of Facts
Khler concluded that the chimps


hile researching for her experiment in which participants
IN CONTEXT doctorate in Berlin, were given simple puzzles or tasks
Russian psychologist to do. They were interrupted during
Bluma Zeigarnik was told by her about half these tasks. Later, when
Memory studies
professor, Kurt Lewin, that he had asked how well they could remember
BEFORE noticed waiters could recall details the activities, it became clear that
1885 Hermann Ebbinghaus of orders that were still not paid for they were twice as likely to recall
publishes his pioneering book, better than details of orders they details of the interrupted tasks,
Memory: A Contribution to had completed. This led Zeigarnik whether these were ultimately
Experimental Psychology. to wonder whether unnished tasks completed or not. Zeigarnik
have a different status in memory, reasoned that this could be due to
1890 William James in The and are remembered better, than the task lacking closure, leading
Principles of Psychology makes nished ones. She devised an to the memory being stored
the distinction between differently, and more effectively.
primary (short-term) and This phenomenon, which
secondary (long-term) memory. became known as the Zeigarnik
effect, had important implications.
AFTER Zeigarnik proposed that students,
1956 George Armitage Millers especially children, retained more
The Magical Number Seven, if they had frequent breaks while
Plus or Minus Two revives studying. But little notice was
interest in the study of memory. taken of her ideas until memory
1966 Jerome Bruner stresses once again became a key subject
the importance of organization for research in the 1950s. Since
and categorization in the then, Zeigarniks theory has been
learning process. accepted as a major step in the
The Zeigarnik effect can be
demonstrated by the fact that a waiter understanding of memory, and
1972 Endel Tulving is more likely to remember details of has found practical application
distinguishes between an order that has not yet been paid for, not only in education but also in
episodic memory (of specic than one that has been completed. advertising and the media.
events) and semantic memory
(of factual information unrelated See also: Hermann Ebbinghaus 4849 Jerome Bruner 16465 George
to an event or situation). Armitage Miller 16873 Endel Tulving 18691 Daniel Schacter 20809

DONALD HEBB (19041985)

n the 1920s, a number of assemblies and phase sequences
IN CONTEXT psychologists turned to are being formed. In his book, The
neuroscience for answers Organization of Behavior (1949), he
to questions about learning and gave the example of a baby hearing
memory. Prominent among these footsteps, which stimulates a
BEFORE was Karl Lashley, who led the way number of neurons in its brain;
1890 William James puts in examining the role played by if the experience is repeated, a
forward a theory about neural neural connections, but it was his cell assembly forms. Subsequently,
networks in the brain. student, the Canadian psychologist when the baby hears footsteps
Donald Hebb, who formulated a an assembly is excited; while this
1911 Edward Thorndikes theory to explain what actually is still active he sees a face and
Law of Effect proposes that happens during the process of feels hands picking him up, which
connections between stimulus associative learning. excites other assembliesso the
and response are stamped in, Hebb argued that nerve cells footsteps assembly becomes
creating a neural link, or become associated when they are connected with the face assembly
association. simultaneously and repeatedly and with the being-picked-up
1917 Wolfgang Khlers study active; the synapses, or links, that assembly. After this has happened,
connect them become stronger. when the baby hears footsteps only,
of chimps shows that learning
Repeated experiences lead to the all three assemblies are excited.
by insight is longer-lasting
formation of cell assemblies, or In adults, however, learning tends
than learning by trial and error. groups of connected neurons, in the to involve the rearrangement
1929 Karl Lashley publishes braina theory often summed up of existing cell assemblies and
Brain Mechanisms and as cells that re together, wire phase sequences, rather than the
Intelligence. together. Similarly, separate cell formation of new ones.
assemblies can also become linked, Hebbs theory of cell assembly
AFTER forming a phase sequence, which was a cornerstone of modern
1970s George Armitage Miller we recognize as a thought process. neuroscience, and his explanation
coins the term cognitive This associative process, Hebb of neural learning, which became
neuroscience. found, is especially noticeable in known as Hebbian learning,
childhood learning, when new cell remains the accepted model.
1980s Neuroscientists devise
imaging techniques, allowing
See also: Edward Thorndike 6265 Karl Lashley 76 Wolfgang Khler 16061
them to map brain functions. George Armitage Miller 16873 Daniel Schacter 20809


Instructing someone is not
APPROACH We learn things by just telling them something
Cognitive development active experience. but encouraging them
to participate.
1920s Lev Vygotsky develops
his theory that cognitive
development is a both a
We acquire knowledge through the use of reasoning, by
social and a cultural process.
constructing meaning from the information.
1936 Jean Piaget publishes
his developmental theories
in his book, Origins of
Intelligence in the Child. This is a form of information processing.
1960s The teaching program
Man: A Course of Study
(MACOS), based on Bruners Knowing is a process, not a product.
theories, is adopted in
schools in the US, the
UK, and Australia.

he eld of developmental widened the meaning of the word
1977 Albert Bandura psychology was dominated experience to encompass cultural
publishes Social Learning throughout much of the and social experience. Children,
Theory, which looks at 20th century by Jean Piaget, who he said, learn mainly through
development through a explained how a childs thinking interaction with other people.
mixture of behavioral develops and matures in stages, At this point in the 1960s, the
as a result of a natural curiosity cognitive revolution was gaining
and cognitive aspects.
to explore the environment. Lev momentum; mental processes were
Vygotskys theory, which appeared increasingly being explained by
in English shortly after Piagets, the analogy of the brain as an
also claimed that a child nds information processor. Jerome
meaning through experience, but Bruner was a key gure in this new
See also: Jean Piaget 26269 Lev Vygotsky 270 Albert Bandura 28691

Ideas are rst presented in a

simple and intuitive way.

They are continuously

revisited and
reconstructed in an Jerome Bruner
increasingly formal way...
The son of Polish immigrants
in New York City, Jerome
Seymour Bruner was born
...and are nally blind, but regained his sight
connected to other after cataract operations at
A spiral curriculum would work knowledge for the age of two. His father died
best in schools, Bruner suggested. This comprehensive mastery of cancer when Bruner was 12,
involves a constant revisiting of ideas, and his grief stricken mother
of the subject.
building incrementally until the child
moved the family frequently
reaches a high level of understanding.
during his subsequent school
years. He studied psychology
approach, having previously development, but to instruct at Duke University, then at
studied the ways that our needs someone... is not a matter of getting Harvard, where he attained a
and motivations inuence him to commit results to mind. PhD in 1941 alongside Gordon
perceptionand concluding that Rather, it is to teach him to Allport and Karl Lashley.
we see what we need to see. He participate in the process. When Bruner served in the US
became interested in how cognition we acquire knowledge, we need to armys Ofce for Strategic
Studies (an intelligence unit)
develops, and so began to study actively participate and reason,
during World War II, then
cognitive processes in children. rather than passively absorb
returned to Harvard, where he
information, because this is what collaborated with Leo Postman
The mind as processor gives knowledge meaning. In terms and George Armitage Miller. In
Bruner began his investigations of cognitive psychology, reasoning 1960, he cofounded the Center
by applying cognitive models to is seen as processing information, for Cognitive Studies with
Piaget and Vygotskys ideas, so the acquisition of knowledge Miller at Harvard, remaining
shifting the emphasis in the study should be seen as a process, not until it closed in 1972. He spent
of cognitive development from the a product or end result. We need the next ten years teaching at
construction of meaning to the encouragement and guidance in Oxford University in England,
processing of information: the that process, and for Bruner, that before returning to the US.
means by which we acquire and is the role of a teacher. Bruner continued to teach
store knowledge. Like Piaget, he In The Process of Education into his nineties.
believes that acquiring knowledge (1960), Bruner presented the idea
is an experiential process; but like that children should be active Key works
Vygotsky, sees this as a social participants in the process of
1960 The Process of Education
occupation, not a solitary one. He education. The book became a 1966 Studies in Cognitive
maintains that learning cannot be landmark text, altering educational Growth
conducted unassisted: some form of policy in the US at governmental 1990 Acts of Meaning
instruction is essential to a childs and schoolteacher level.


If we hold strong beliefs that are undermined
BRANCH by evidence to the contrary
Cognitive psychology
Learning theory
1933 Gestalt psychologist Kurt we nd ourselves in an uncomfortable state of
cognitive dissonance.
Lewin leaves the Berlin School
of Experimental Psychology
and emigrates to the US.
1963 Stanley Milgram If we accept the contradiction, this
publishes his experiments on causes further inconsistency between our
willingness to obey authority past and present beliefs.
gures, even when orders
conict with ones conscience.
1971 Philip Zimbardos
Stanford prison study shows
how people adapt to the roles
they are assigned. So instead we may nd ways to make the new
evidence consistent with our beliefs.
1972 US social psychologist
Daryl Bem proposes the
alternative self-perception
theory of attitude change.
1980s Elliot Aronson defends
Festingers theory, conducting A man with conviction is a hard man
experiments into initiation rites. to change.
See also: Kurt Lewin 21823 Solomon Asch 22427 Elliot Aronson 24445 Stanley Milgram 24653

Philip Zimbardo 25455 Stanley Schachter 338

y the end of World War II, cognitive dissonance. He reasoned their prediction and consequent
social pscychology had that the only way to overcome this cognitive dissonance would cause
become an important eld discomfort is to somehow make the cult members to abandon their
of research, spearheaded in the US belief and the evidence consistent. beliefs, the opposite occurred. As
by Kurt Lewin, the founder of the the day of reckoning drew near,
Research Center for Group Dynamics Unshakeable conviction another message came through,
at the Massachusetts Institute of After reading a report in a local declaring that, due to the groups
Technology in 1945. newspaper in 1954, Festinger dedication, the world was to be
On the staff at the center was saw an opportunity to study the spared. Cult members became even
one of Lewins former students, Leon reaction to just such a cognitive more fervent believers. Festinger
Festinger. Originally attracted by dissonance. A cult claimed to have had anticipated this; to accept the
Lewins work in Gestalt psychology, received messages from aliens contradictory evidence would set
he later took an interest in social warning of a ood that would end up an even greater dissonance
psychology. In the course of his the world on December 21; only between past belief and present
research, Festinger observed that true believers would be rescued by denial, he argued. This effect was
people continually seek to bring ying saucers. Festinger and some compounded if a great deal
order to their world, and a key part of his colleagues at the University (reputation, jobs, and money) had
of that order is consistency. To of Minnesota gained access to the been invested in the original belief.
achieve this, they develop routines group, interviewing them before Festinger concluded that
and habits, such as establishing the designated apocalyptic date cognitive dissonance, or at least
regular mealtimes and choosing and again afterward, when the the avoidance of it, makes a man
favorite seats on their daily events had failed to transpire. of strong conviction unlikely to
commute to work. When these The now-famous Oak Park change his opinion in the face of
routines are disrupted, people feel study of this group, written up by contradiction; he is immune to
very uneasy. The same is true, he Festinger, Henry Riecken, and evidence and rational argument. As
found, of habitual thought patterns Stanley Schachter in When Festinger explains: Tell him you
or beliefs. If a very strong opinion is Prophecy Fails, describes the disagree and he turns away. Show
met with contradictory evidence, it reaction of the cult members. him facts or gures and he questions
creates an uncomfortable internal Where common sense might lead your sources. Appeal to logic and
inconsistency; Festinger called this us to expect that the failure of he fails to see your point.

Leon Festinger Leon Festinger was born in cult predicting the end of the
Brooklyn, New York, to a Russian world. He moved to Stanford
immigrant family. He graduated University in 1955, continuing
from City College of New York in his work in social psychology,
1939, then studied at the University but in the 1960s he turned to
of Iowa under Kurt Lewin, nishing research into perception. He
his PhD in Child Psychology in later focused on history and
1942. After spending the later archaeology at the New School
years of World War II in military for Social Research in New York.
training, he rejoined Lewin in 1945 He died of liver cancer, aged 69.
at the Research Center for Group
Dynamics at the Massachusetts Key works
Institute of Technology (MIT).
It was during his appointment 1956 When Prophecy Fails
as professor at the University of 1962 A Theory of Cognitive
Minnesota that Festinger made Dissonance
his famous Oak Park study of a 1983 The Human Legacy

APPROACH Before information is
Memory studies stored in long-term memory,
it is processed by
BEFORE working memory.
1885 Hermann Ebbinghaus
publishes his pioneering book
Memory: A Contribution to
Experimental Psychology.
1890 William James makes Working memory has a
the distinction between limited capacityabout
primary (short-term) and seven (plus or minus two) elements.
secondary (long-term) memory
in The Principles of Psychology.
1950 Mathematician Alan
Turings test suggests that a
computer can be considered If individual bits of information
a thinking machine. are organized into chunks
(meaningful patterns) of information
AFTER they are easier to store.
1972 Endel Tulving makes the
distinction between semantic
and episodic memory.
2001 Daniel Schacter proposes
a list of the different ways we Working memory
misremember in The Seven can then hold seven (plus
Sins of Memory. or minus two) of these larger
chunks of information.

eorge Armitage Miller and introduction, Miller had a advances in computer science
once famously complained: serious intent, and the article was had brought the idea of articial
My problem is that I have to become a landmark of cognitive intelligence closer to reality, and
been persecuted by an integer. psychology and the study of working while mathematicians, such as Alan
For seven years this number has memory (the ability to remember Turing, were comparing computer
followed me around. So begins his and use pieces of information for processing with the human brain,
now famous article The Magical a limited amount of time). cognitive psychologists were
Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Millers paper was published in engaged in the converse: they
Some Limits on our Capacity for The Psychological Review in 1956, looked to the computer as a
Processing Information. He goes on: when behaviorism was being possible model for explaining the
There is some pattern governing superseded by the new cognitive workings of the human brain. Mental
its appearances. Either there really psychology. This fresh approach processes were being described in
is something unusual about the which Miller wholeheartedly terms of information processing.
number or I am suffering from embracedfocused on the study of Millers main interest was in the
delusions of persecution. Despite mental processes, such as memory eld of psycholinguistics, stemming
the whimsical nature of his title and attention. At the same time, from his work during World War II on
See also: Hermann Ebbinghaus 4849 Bluma Zeigarnik 162 Donald Broadbent 17885 Endel Tulving 18691

Gordon H. Bower 19495 Daniel Schacter 20809 Noam Chomsky 29497 Frederic Bartlett 33536

by the recurrence and possible accurately assigning numbers to

signicance of the number seven; each of them, but above seven
sometimes a little larger and (give or take one or two), the
sometimes a little smaller than results deteriorated dramatically.
usual, but never changing so much In another experiment, by
as to be unrecognizable. Kaufman, Lord, et al, in 1949,
The persistence with
The rst instance of the researchers ashed varying numbers
which this number magical number came from of colored dots on to a screen in
plagues me is far more experiments to determine the front of participants. When there
than a random accident. span of absolute judgmenthow were fewer than seven dots,
George Armitage Miller accurately we can distinguish a participants could accurately
number of different stimuli. In one number them; when there were
experiment cited in Millers paper, more than seven, participants were
the physicist and acoustic only able to estimate the number
specialist Irwin Pollack played a of dots. This suggests that the
number of different musical tones span of attention is limited to
to participants, who were then around six, and caused Miller to
speech perception, which formed the asked to assign a number to each wonder whether the same basic
basis for his doctoral thesis. This tone. When up to around seven process might be involved in both
led him to take an interest in the different tones were played, the the span of absolute judgment
growing eld of communications, subjects had no difculty in and the span of attention.
which in turn introduced him
to information theory. He was
particularly inspired by Claude
Shannon, a leading gure in
communications, who was
investigating effective ways of
turning messages into electronic
signals. Shannons communication
model, which involved translating
ideas into codes made up of bits,
underpins all digital communication.
Miller was inspired to look at mental
processes in a similar way, and to
establish the ground rules for the
modern eld of psycholinguistics
in his 1951 book, Language and

Seven categories
Miller took Shannons method of
measuring information and his idea
of channel capacity (the amount
of information that can be processed
by a system) and applied it to the An experiment into the span of attention presented
model of short-term memory as an participants with random patterns of dots ashed on a
information processor. This was screen for a fraction of a second. Participants instantly
when he began to be persecuted recognized the number if there were fewer than seven.
The tones and dots in these took this idea of channel capacity
experiments are what Miller calls a stage further, applying it to the
unidimensional stimuli (objects model of short-term memory.
that differ from one another in only William James rst proposed the
one respect); but what interested notion of short-term memory, and
Miller is the amount of information it had long been an accepted part The process of memorizing
in speech and language we can of the model of the brain as an
may be simply the
effectively process, and items such information processor, coming
as words are multidimensional between the sensory input of
formation of chunks
stimuli. He looks to later studies by information and long-term memory.
until there are few enough
Pollack in which the simple tones Hermann Ebbinghaus and Wilhelm chunks so that we can
were replaced by tones that varied Wundt had even suggested that recall all the items.
in six ways (such as pitch, duration, short-term memory had a capacity George Armitage Miller
volume, and location). Surprisingly, limited to around seven items
despite the apparently larger amount (seven, again). Miller believed that
of information, the results still what he called working memory
pointed to a differential limit of had a capacity that corresponded
seven, plus or minus two. The to the limits of absolute judgment
difference is that as more variables and span of attention.
are added, accuracy slightly that by the same principle,
decreases. Miller claims this allows Bits and chunks working memory organizes bits
us to make relatively crude In terms of our ability to process of information into chunks, to
judgments of several things information, if working memory is overcome the informational
simultaneously. It may explain how limited to about seven elements, bottleneck caused by our limited
we are able to recognize and there is a potential bottleneck spans of absolute judgment and
distinguish such complex things as restricting the amount that can be short-term memory. A chunk is not,
spoken words and peoples faces, put into long-term memory. But however, just an arbitrary grouping,
without having to process the Miller suggested that there was but an encoding of bits into a
individual sounds or features. more to the correspondence than meaningful unit; for example, a
Miller sees the human mind as just the number seven, no matter string of 21 letters represents 21
a communication system: as the how magical it appeared. The bits of information, but if this can
input information increases, the multidimensional stimuli of be broken down into a sequence
amount transmitted to the brain previous experiments could be of three-letter words, it becomes
also increases initially, before seen as composed of several bits seven chunks. Chunking is
leveling off at an individuals of related information, but treated dependent on our ability to nd
channel capacity. Miller then as a single item. Miller believed patterns and relationships in the


Super cali fragi listic expi ali docious

Millers theory of chunking says that by building

up or breaking down long streams of numbers or letters
into memorable chunks, we increase the amount of
information we can hold in working memory.
Binary code is a way of recoding
information into ever-more tightly
packed parcels (through multibase
arithmetic). Miller claims our chunking
process operates in a similar way.

powerful weapon for increasing the

amount of information we can deal
with. It effectively stretches the
informational bottleneck.

The study of memory

Miller himself moved away from
the subject of memory in his later George Armitage Miller
research, but his theory prompted
others to examine it in more detail. George Armitage Miller was
Donald Broadbent argued that the born in Charleston, WV. After
graduating from the University
real gure for working memory is
of Alabama in 1941 with an
probably less than seven, and this MA in speech pathology, he
bits of information. To someone was later conrmed in experiments earned a PhD at Harvard in
who does not speak the same by Nelson Cowan, who found it to psychology, working in Stanley
language, the seven words might be around four chunks, depending Smith Stevens Psychoacoustic
be meaningless, and would not on the length and complexity of the Laboratory, with Jerome
constitute seven chunks, but 21 bits. chunks, and the age of the subject. Bruner and Gordon Allport.
Millers theory was backed up In the conclusion to his paper, During World War II the
by earlier experiments by other Miller is dismissive of the laboratory was asked to help
psychologists. In 1954, Sidney signicance of the number with military tasks such as
Smith conducted experiments in that originally prompted it. He radio jamming.
memorizing a sequence of binary concludes by saying: Perhaps there In 1951, Miller left Harvard
digitsa meaningless string of is something deep and profound for Massachusetts Institute
ones and zeroes to anyone behind all these sevens but I of Technology (MIT), then
returned to Harvard in 1955,
unfamiliar with the binary system. suspect that it is only a pernicious,
where he worked closely with
Smith broke the series down into Pythagorean coincidence.
Noam Chomsky. In 1960, he
chunks, at rst into pairs of digits, cofounded the Harvard Center
and then in groups of three, four, for Cognitive Studies. He later
and ve, and then recoded them worked as a professor of
by translating the binary chunks psychology at Rockefeller
into decimal numbers: 01 became University, New York, and
1, 10 became 2, and so on. He found Princeton University. In 1991,
that by using this system it was The kind of he was awarded the National
possible to memorize and accurately linguistic recoding Medal of Science.
reproduce a string of 40 digits or that people do
more, as long as the number of seems to me to be Key works
chunks was limited to the span the very lifeblood of
of working memory. the thought processes. 1951 Language and
As an aid to memorizing large George Armitage Miller Communication
1956 The Magical Number
amounts of information, chunking
Seven, Plus or Minus Two
and recoding is an obvious boon, 1960 Plans and the Structure
but it is more than a mnemonic of Behavior (with Eugene
trick. Miller pointed out that this Galanter and Karl Pribram)
form of recoding is an extremely

Cognitive therapy

1890s Sigmund Freud
proposes an analytic approach
to psychotherapy.

1940s and 1950s Fritz Perls,
with Laura Perls and Paul
Goodman, develops Gestalt

therapya cognitive approach
to psychotherapy.
1955 Albert Ellis introduces
Rational Emotive Behavior

AARON BECK (1921 )

Therapy (REBT), breaking with
the tradition of analysis.
1975 Martin Seligman denes
learned helplessness in
Helplessness: On Depression,
Development, and Death.
1980s A blend of Becks ideas
and the behavior therapies of
Joseph Wolpe give rise to new
cognitive behavioral therapies.

fter psychology had
become established as
a distinct eld of study,
around the turn of the 20th century,
two main schools, or approaches,
emerged. These were experimental
psychology, which was dominated
by the behaviorism originating
from Ivan Pavlovs experiments,
and which was enthusiastically
championed in the US; and clinical
psychology, which was largely
based on the psychoanalytical
approach of Sigmund Freud and
his followers. The two had little in
common. Behaviorists rejected the
introspective, philosophical
approach of earlier psychologists,
and strove to put the subject on a
See also: Joseph Wolpe 8687 Sigmund Freud 9299 Fritz Perls 11217

Albert Ellis 14245 Martin Seligman 20001 Paul Salkovskis 21213

Psychoanalytic therapy Cognitive therapy

places an emphasis on places an emphasis on
delving into the patients examining peoples
unconscious to solve perceptions of their
current disorders. experiences.

Aaron Beck
The evidence for the
success of psychoanalytic There is strong
empirical evidence for Born in Providence, Rhode
therapy is based on Island, Aaron Temkin Beck
personal accounts rather the success of cognitive
therapy. was the son of Russian Jewish
than facts or research. immigrants. Athletic and
outgoing as a young child, he
became far more studious and
introspective after suffering a
serious illness at the age of
The key to effective treatment lies not in the unconscious, eight. He also acquired a fear
but in the examination of how a disorder manifests itself of all things medical and,
in a patients perceptions. determined to overcome this,
decided to train as a doctor,
graduating from Yale in 1946.
Beck then worked at Rhode
Island Hospital, before
Theres more to the surface than meets the eye. qualifying as a psychiatrist in
1953. Disillusioned with the
psychoanalytical approach
to clinical psychology, he
more scientic, evidence-based to all of them. Some psychologists instigated cognitive therapy
footing. The psychoanalysts were beginning to question the and later established the
explored those very introspections, validity of this kind of therapy, and Beck Institute for Cognitive
with theories, rather than proof, Aaron Beck was among them. Therapy and Research in
to support their case. When Beck qualied as a Philadelphia, now run by his
psychiatrist in 1953, experimental daughter, Dr. Judith Beck.
Cognitive revolution psychology was focused on the
By the mid-20th century, both study of mental processesit Key works
approaches to psychology were was the dawn of the cognitive
being critically examined. But revolution. However, the practical 1972 Depression: Causes and
although behaviorism was being approach of cognitive psychologists
1975 Cognitive Therapy and
overtaken by cognitive psychology remained much the same as that of
the Emotional Disorders
in experimental work, the clinical the behaviorists. If anything, they 1980 Depression: Clinical,
sphere was offering no alternative were frequently even more rigorous Experimental, and Theoretical
to the psychoanalytical model. in establishing evidence for their 1999 Prisoners of Hate: The
Psychotherapy had evolved into theories. Beck was no exception Cognitive Basis of Anger,
many forms, but the basic idea of to this. He had trained in and Hostility, and Violence
psychoanalysis and exploration practiced psychoanalysis, but grew
of the unconscious was common skeptical of its effectiveness as a
Psychoanalytic Institute on the and evaluate how realistic or
grounds that his desire to conduct distorted their perceptions were
scientic studies signaled that hed was the rst step in overcoming
been improperly analyzed. Those depression. This ew in the face of
who found fault with the idea of conventional psychoanalysis, which
analysis did so, some analysts sought and examined underlying
I concluded that argued, because of insufcient drives, emotions, and repressions.
psychoanalysis was a analysis of themselves. Becks cognitive therapy saw
faith-based therapy. Beck was suspicious of both this as unnecessary or even
Aaron Beck the circularity of these arguments, counterproductive. The patients
and the link with the therapists perception could be taken at face
own personality. Coupled with his value because, as he was fond of
personal experience as a practicing putting it, theres more to the
psychoanalyst, this led him to surface than meets the eye.
examine thoroughly every aspect of What Beck meant by this was
therapy, looking for ways in which that the immediate manifestations
therapy. He could nd no reliable it could be improved. He carried out of depressionthe negative
studies of the success rates of a series of experiments designed to automatic thoughtsprovide all
psychoanalysisonly anecdotal evaluate the basis and treatment of the information needed for therapy.
evidence of case reports. In his depression, one of the most common If these thoughts are examined
experience, only a minority of reasons for seeking psychotherapy, and compared with an objective,
patients showed improvement and found that far from conrming rational view of the same situation,
under analysis, and the general the idea that this condition could the patient can recognize how
consensus among therapists was be treated by examination of his perception is distorted. For
that some got better, some got unconscious emotions and drives, example, a patient who has been
worse, and some stayed about the his results pointed to a very offered a promotion at work might
same, in almost equal numbers. different interpretation. express negative thoughts such as
Of particular concern was the Ill nd the new job too difcult,
resistance of many psychoanalysts Changing perceptions and fail, a perception of the
to objective scientic examination. In describing their depression,
Compared with experimental Becks patients often expressed
psychology, or with medicine, negative ideas about themselves,
psychoanalysis seemed largely their future, and society in general,
faith-based, with widely different which came to them involuntarily.
results between individual These automatic thoughts, as Beck
practitioners. Reputation was called them, led him to conclude
frequently based solely on the that the way the patients perceived
charisma of a particular analyst. their experiencestheir cognition
Beck concluded that the of themwas not just a symptom
psychoanalytic mystique was of their depression, but also the key
overwhelming It was a little bit to nding an effective therapy.
like the evangelical movement. This idea, which came to him in
Many psychoanalysts regarded the 1960s, chimed with concurrent
criticism of their theories as a developments in experimental
personal attack, and Beck soon psychology, which had established
discovered that any questioning the dominance of cognitive
of the validity of psychoanalysis psychology by studying mental
A distorting mirror creates a view
was likely to be countered with processes such as perception. of the world that can seem terrifying
universal denouncement. At one When Beck applied a cognitive and ugly. Similarly, depression tends
time, he was turned down for model to treatment, he found that to cast a negative perspective on life,
membership of the American helping his patients to recognize making sufferers feel more hopeless.

Some people For others, who view their

would view this situation in a more negative light,
glass as half full. the glass is half empty.

By correcting erroneous
beliefs, we can lower
excessive reactions.
Aaron Beck
How people assess the same
situation varies with temperament.
Becks cognitive therapy can help
patients question their perceptions,
leading to a more positive outlook.

situation that leads to anxiety and pains to demonstrate that it was his treatments, as did many other
unhappiness. A more rational way the therapy that was successful, psychotherapists in the 1980s. This
of looking at the promotion would and not the therapist. has resulted in the varied forms of
be to see it as a reward, or even a Beck was not the only, or cognitive behavioral therapy that
challenge. It is not the situation even the rst, psychologist to are used by psychologists today.
that is causing the depression, nd traditional psychoanalysis Becks pioneering work marked
but the patients perception of it. unsatisfactory, but his use of a a turning point for psychotherapy,
Cognitive therapy could help him to cognitive model was innovatory. and his inuence is considerable.
recognize how distorted it is, and He had been inuenced in his As well as bringing a cognitive
nd a more realistic and positive reaction against psychoanalysis approach into clinical psychology,
way of thinking about the situation. by the work of Albert Ellis, who Beck subjected it to scientic
had developed Rational Emotive scrutiny, exposing the weaknesses
Empirical evidence Behavior Therapy (REBT) in the of psychoanalysis. In the process,
Becks cognitive therapy worked. mid-1950s, and he was no doubt he introduced several methods for
for a large number of his patients. aware of the work of behaviorists assessing the nature and severity
What is more, he was able to elsewhere in the world, including of depression that are still used:
demonstrate that it worked, as the South Africans Joseph Wolpe the Beck Depression Inventory
he applied scientic methods and Arnold A. Lazarus. Although (BDI), the Beck Hopelessness Scale,
to ensure that he had empirical different in approach, their the Beck Scale for Suicidal Ideation
evidence for his ndings. He therapies shared with Becks a (BSS), and the Beck Anxiety
designed special assessments thoroughly scientic methodology Inventory (BAI).
for his patients, so that he could and a rejection of the importance
monitor their progress closely. of unconscious causes of mental
The results showed that cognitive and emotional disorders.
therapy was making his patients Once the success of cognitive
feel better, and feel better more therapy had been established, it
quickly, than was the case under was used increasingly for treating
traditional psychoanalysis. Becks depression, and later Beck found Dont trust me,
insistence on providing evidence that it could also be helpful for other test me.
for any claims he made for his conditions, such as personality Aaron Beck
therapy opened it up to objective disorders and even schizophrenia.
scrutiny. Above all, he was most Always open to new ideasas long
anxious to avoid acquiring the as it could be shown that they were
guru-like status of many successful effectiveBeck also incorporated
psychoanalysts, and was at great elements of behavior therapy into

n Britain prior to World War II, psychology and the kind of
IN CONTEXT psychology as an academic problems it addresses, which led
discipline lagged behind him to look at some of the problems
Europe and the US. Britains encountered by pilots in a different
Attention theory
psychologists had tended to follow way. He thought these problems
BEFORE in the footsteps of the behaviorist might have psychological causes
1640s Ren Descartes says and psychotherapeutic schools of and answers, rather than simply
the human body is a kind of thought that had evolved elsewhere. mechanical ones, so after leaving
machine with a mind, or soul. In the few university psychology the RAF, he went to Cambridge
departments that existed, the University to study psychology.
1940s British psychologist approach followed that of the Broadbents mentor at Cambridge,
and APU director Kenneth natural sciences: the emphasis was Frederic Bartlett, was a kindred
Craik prepares ow diagrams on practical applications rather spirit: a thoroughgoing scientist,
comparing human and articial than theoretical speculations. and Englands rst professor of
information processing. It was in this unpromising experimental psychology. Bartlett
academic environment that Donald believed that the most important
Broadbent, who went on to become theoretical discoveries are often
1959 George Armitage Millers one of the most inuential of the made while attempting to nd
studies suggest that short-term early cognitive psychologists, found solutions to practical problems. This
memory can hold a maximum himself when he left the Royal Air idea appealed to Broadbent, and
of seven pieces of information. Force after the war and decided to prompted him to continue working
1964 British psychologist study psychology. However, the under Bartlett at the new Applied
Anne Treisman suggests that practical approach proved ideal Psychology Unit (APU) after it
less important information is for Broadbent, who was able to opened in 1944. It was during his
not eliminated at the lter make perfect use of his wartime time there that Broadbent was to
stage but attenuated (like experience as an aeronautical do his most groundbreaking work.
turning down the volume) engineer and pilot. He chose to ignore the then-
so it can still be shadowed dominant behaviorist approach to
by the mind.
Practical psychology psychology and to concentrate on
Broadbent had enlisted in the RAF the practical problems he had come
when he was 17, and he was sent across in his time in the RAF. For
to the US as part of his training. example, pilots sometimes confused
Here he rst became aware of similar-looking controls; in some

Information from the senses is briey held in the

short-term memory store

so that only one piece of information is

selected for attention. then passed through a lter
See also: Ren Descartes 2021 George Armitage Miller 16873

Daniel Schacter 20809 Frederic Bartlett 33536

Donald Broadbent
Born in Birmingham, England,
Donald Broadbent considered
himself to be Welsh, since he
spent his teenage years
in Wales after his parents
divorce. He won a scholarship
to the prestigious Winchester
A World War II plane incorporates a Broadbent was inuenced in his College, then joined the Royal
dazzling display of informational data; thinking about how we process Air Force aged 17, where he
Broadbent was interested in discovering information by another product of trained as a pilot and studied
how pilots prioritized information and
wartime research: the development aeronautical engineering.
what design changes would aid this.
of computers and the idea of After leaving the RAF in
articial intelligence. The rst 1947, he studied psychology
planes, the lever for pulling up the director of the APU, Kenneth under Frederic Bartlett at
wheels was identical to the one for Craik, had left the unit important Cambridge, then joined the
pulling up the aps, and the two manuscripts and ow diagrams newly founded Applied
were situated together under the comparing human and articial Psychology Unit (APU),
becoming its director in 1958.
seat; this led to frequent accidents. information processing, which
Married twice, he was a shy,
Broadbent thought these incidents Broadbent clearly studied.
famously generous man whose
could be avoided if the capacities At the same time, code breakers puritanical streak led him
and limitations of the pilots were such as the mathematician Alan to believe that his work was
taken into consideration during Turing had been tackling the notion a privilege and should always
the design process, rather than of information processing, and in be of real use. In 1974, he
surfacing at the point of use. the postwar period he applied this was awarded the CBE and
Broadbent was interested in to the idea of a thinking machine. appointed a fellow of Wolfson
using psychology not only to design The comparison of a machine to College, Oxford, where he
better equipment, but also to reach the workings of the brain was a remained until his retirement
a better understanding of what powerful analogy, but it was in 1991. He died two years
affected the pilots capabilities. Broadbent who turned the idea later of a heart attack, aged 66.
They clearly had to cope with large around, considering the human
amounts of incoming information, brain as a kind of information- Key works
and then had to select the relevant processing machine. This, in
1958 Perception and
data they needed to make good essence, is what distinguishes
decisions. It seemed to him that cognitive psychology from 1971 Decision and Stress
mistakes were often made when behaviorism: it is the study of 1993 The Simulation of Human
there were too many sources of mental processes, rather than their Intelligence
incoming information. manifestation in behavior.
To study how our attention works, use to lter out the irrelevant
Broadbent needed to design information from the masses of
experiments that would back up data we receive through our senses
his hunches. His background in all the time. Following the air trafc
engineering meant that he would control model, he chose to present
not be satised until he had aural (sound-based) information
evidence on which to base a theory,
Our mind can be conceived through headphones to the subjects
and he also wanted that research
as a radio receiving many of his experiment. The system was
to have a practical application. channels at once. set up so that he could relay two
The APU was dedicated to applied Donald Broadbent different streams of information at
psychology, which for Broadbent the same timeone to the left ear
referred not only to therapeutic and one to the rightand then test
applications, but also to applications the subjects on their retention of
that beneted society as a whole; that information.
he was always very conscious that As Broadbent had suspected, the
his research was publicly funded. subjects were unable to reproduce
could only effectively deal with one all the information from both
One voice at a time message at a time. What interested channels of input. His feeling that
One of Broadbents most important him was the mental process that we can only listen to one voice at
experiments was suggested by his must take place in order for them to once had been conrmed, but still
experience with air trafc control. select the most important message the question remained as to exactly
Ground crew often had to deal with from the various sources of incoming how the subject had chosen to retain
several streams of incoming information. He felt that there must some of the incoming information
information simultaneously, sent be some kind of mechanism in the and effectively disregard the rest.
from planes arriving and departing, brain that processes the information Thinking back to his initial
which was relayed to the operators and makes that selection. training as an engineer, Broadbent
by radio and received through The experiment that Broadbent suggested a mechanical model to
headphones. The air trafc devised, now known as the dichotic explain what he felt was happening
controllers then had to make quick listening experiment, was one of in the brain. He believed that when
decisions based on that information, the rst in the eld of selective there are multiple sources of input,
and Broadbent had noticed that they attentionthe process our brains they may reach a bottleneck if the
brain is unable to continue to process
all the incoming information; at this
point, there must be some kind of
lter that lets through only one
channel of input. The analogy he
uses to explain this is typically
practical: he describes a Y-shaped
tube, into which two ows of ping
pong balls are channeled. At the
junction of the two branches of the
tube, there is a ap that acts to
block one ow of balls or the other;
this allows balls from the unblocked
channel into the stem of the tube.

Air trafc controllers have to deal

with a multitude of simultaneous
signals. By re-creating this problem in
listening experiments, Broadbent was
able to identify attention processes.
A question still remained, however:
at what stage does this lter come
into operation? In a series of
Our short-term Information from all
experiments that were variations memories are like the senses is fed in...
on his original dichotic listening a Y-shaped tube.
tasks, Broadbent established that
information is received by the
senses and then passed on in
its entirety to some kind of store,
which he called the short-term
memory store. It is at this stage, he
believes, that the ltering occurs. ...which creates a
His description of how and when bottleneck where
information is selected for attention information must be
is known as the Broadbent Filter
Model, and it demonstrated a
completely new approach to
experimental psychology, not only
in combining the theoretical with
the practical, but also in considering
the workings of the brain as a form ...so that only one stream
of information processing. of information is
The cocktail party problem
Broadbent was not the only person
to address the problem of selective
attention. Another British scientist,
Colin Cherry, also investigated the many conversations to give our important implications when
subject during the 1950s. Working attention to, and which to ignore? applied to air trafc control, for
in communication rather than And how is it possible to be example, where decisions could
psychology, Cherry posed what he distracted from our focused be made on possibly irrelevant or
called the cocktail party problem: attention on conversation A inaccurate information, rather than
how, at a party where lots of people by conversations B or C? being prioritized according to
are talking, do we select which of To help answer these questions, meaning and importance.
Broadbent turned his attention to Broadbent and Cherry worked
the nature of the lter in his model. together on many dichotic listening
Precisely what information does experiments to test the ltering
it lter out, and what does it allow process. They realized that ltering
through? Following another process is also affected by expectation. In
of rigorous experimenting, he found one experiment, participants were
One of the two voices is that the selection is made not on asked to listen to different sets of
selected for response without the content of the information (what numbers presented simultaneously
reference to its correctness, is being said), but on the physical to each ear. In some cases they
and the other is ignored. characteristics of any message, were instructed which ear (the
Donald Broadbent such as clarity or tone of voice. information channel) they would
This suggests that even though be asked about rst; in others no
information is stored, albeit very instructions were given. The
briey, in short-term memory, it results showed that when people
is only after ltering that it is know which ear is receiving the
processed for meaning and actually stream of information they will
understood. This nding had be asked for rst, they switch
attention to that ear, and the comprehension, and memory. problem, and in particular one
information that enters the other The timing was signicant, as phenomenon Cherry had identied
ear is not always accurately it coincided with a divergence of concerning the nature of information
retrieved from memory. In all cases opinion about the importance that is selected for attention. When
the information that people chose of behaviorism in the US, and the an overheard conversation includes
or were asked to remember rst book slowly became known information that has some kind of
seemed to be processed more as one of the landmarks in the special signicance for a person
accurately than the later material; development of the new cognitive such as a personal namethe
it was thought this might be due to psychology. As a result, Broadbent attention is switched toward that
parts of the information being lost was recognized, by his peers if conversation, and away from the
from the short-term memory store not the public, as the rst major one previously attended to.
before the participant tried to psychologist Britain had produced, Further dichotic listening
retrieve it. In 1957, Broadbent and was rewarded the same year experiments at the APU bore out
wrote: We can listen to only one by being appointed director of the Cherrys ndings: attention is
voice at once, and the rst words APU to succeed Bartlett. ltered by physical characteristics
we hear are the best recalled. Not one to rest on his laurels, but also by meaning, using feedback
however, Broadbent saw his new from memory stores, prior experience,
Modifying the model appointment as an opportunity to and expectations. The sound of a
In 1958, Broadbent published the continue his work on attention, siren, for instance, would divert
results of his research in a book, widening the scope of his research attention on to that stream of sound.
Perception and Communication, and rening the theory. From the This suggests that information is in
which effectively outlined a starting point of his lter model, some way understood before being
framework for studying attention, he returned to the cocktail party selected for attention.


People at a cocktail
party may be listening
to one conversation,
but then become aware
of (and switch attention
to) another, if it includes
personally signicant

The test of a psychological

theory, as well as its moral
justication, lies in its
application to concrete
practical considerations.
Donald Broadbent

Complex industrial processes could

be transformed in efciency, Broadbent
thought, through the application of
psychology. He was committed to
producing genuinely useful research.

Broadbent realized that his lter and their causes. In each case the shape the development of cognitive
model needed modication, but results of his experiments led to science. His work also established
was pleased rather than dismayed renements of his theories. In 1971, applied psychology as an important
to have to make the changes. As a he published a second book, approach for problem-solving,
scientist, he felt that all scientic Decision and Stress, which detailed increasing its impact well beyond
theories are temporary, derived an extended version of his lter the connes of the laboratory. A key
from the evidence available at the theory. Like its predecessor, this gure in the founding of cognitive
time, and so susceptible to change book became a classic textbook of psychology, his research into
in the light of new evidence; this is cognitive psychology. attention laid the groundwork for a
how science progresses. new eld of enquiry that continues
The work of the APU centered The cognitive approach to yield rich results today.
around Broadbents research into Broadbents books did not reach
attention, but this allowed for a the general public, but were widely
constantly widening range of read by scientists from other
applications. Broadbent worked disciplines. His comparison of the
tirelessly to ensure that his work workings of the human brain with
was practically useful, examining electronic machines became more
the effects of noise, heat, and stress and more relevant as interest in His psychology was intended
on attention in work environments, computing increased. His model for society and its problems,
and he constantly reviewed his of the various stages of human not merely for the dwellers
ideas as he worked. In the process, information processingacquisition, in ivory towers.
he gained government support for storage, retrieval, and useechoed Fergus Craik and
his ideas, and the respect of many the work on articial intelligence Alan Baddely
industries whose practices were at that time.
improved by his work. This led to Broadbent was instrumental in
yet more research into areas such setting up a Joint Council Initiative
as differences of attention between on Cognitive Science and Human-
individuals, and lapses of attention Computer Interaction, which helped

Episodic memory is made up of events and
APPROACH experiences that are stored in long-term memory.
Memory studies
1878 Hermann Ebbinghaus
conducts the rst scientic
study of human memory. Memories of our
It is distinct from semantic experiences are associated
1927 Bluma Zeigarnik memory, which is our
describes how interrupted with particular times and
long-term memory store for places and can be triggered
tasks are better remembered facts and knowledge. by these cues.
than uninterrupted ones.
1960s Jerome Bruner stresses
the importance of organization
and categorization in the
learning process. Associated sensory cues such as a particular
AFTER song or scent can also help us recall seemingly
1979 Elizabeth Loftus looks at complete memories of past events.
distortions of memory in her
book Eyewitness Testimony.
1981 Gordon H. Bower makes
the link between events and Only humans can travel back in time to
emotions in memory. reect on their experiences in this way
2001 Daniel Schacter
publishes The Seven Sins of
Memory: How the Mind
Forgets and Remembers. as if times arrow is bent into a loop.

emory was one of the studies, notably by Bluma Zeigarnik area of study. Forced to abandon
rst elds of study for and Frederic Bartlett in the 1920s the study of visual perception due
psychologists in the and 30s, memory was largely ignored to a lack of facilities, Tulving turned
19th century, as it was closely as a topic until the cognitive his attention to memory. The
connected with the concept of revolution took place following funding decit also shaped his
consciousness, which had formed World War II. Cognitive psychologists approach to the subject, designing
the bridge between philosophy and began to explore the idea of the experiments that used no more
psychology. Hermann Ebbinghaus brain as an information processor, than a pen, some paper, and a
in particular devoted much of his and this provided a model for the supply of index cards.
research to the scientic study of storage of memory: it was seen as
memory and learning, but the next a process, whereby some items The free-recall method
generation of psychologists turned passed from short-term or working Learning about the subject as he
their attention to a behaviorist memory into long-term memory. went along, Tulving worked in a
study of learning, and conditioning By the time Endel Tulving rather unorthodox way, which
replaced memory as the focus of nished his doctorate in 1957, occasionally earned him criticism
research. Apart from a few isolated memory was once more a central from his peers, and was to make
See also: Hermann Ebbinghaus 4849 Bluma Zeigarnik 162 George Armitage Miller 16873 Gordon H. Bower
19495 Elizabeth Loftus 20207 Daniel Schacter 20809 Roger Brown 237 Frederic Bartlett 335

publishing his results difcult. His the better they organize the In the course of his research,
maverick instincts did, however, information, the better they are Tulving was struck by the fact
lead to some truly innovative able to remember it. His subjects that there seemed to be different
research. One hurriedly designed, were also able to recall a word kinds of memory. The distinction
ad hoc demonstration to a class of when given a cue in the form of between long-term memory and
students in the early 1960s was to the category (such as animals) short-term memory had already
provide him with the model for in which they had mentally led been established, but Tulving felt
many later experiments. He read that word. Tulving concluded that there was more than one kind of
out a random list of 20 everyday although all the words memorized long-term memory. He saw a
words to the students, and then from the list were actually available difference between memories
asked them to write down as many for remembering, the ones that that are knowledge-based (facts
as they could recall, in any order. were organized by subject were and data), and those that are
As he expected, most of them more readily accessible to memory, experience-based (events and
managed to remember around especially when the appropriate conversations). He proposed a
half of the list. He then asked them cue was given. division of long-term memory into
about the words that they had not two distinct types: semantic
remembered, giving hints such as Memory types memory, the store of facts; and
Wasnt there a color on the list?, Where previous psychologists episodic memory, the repository
after which the student could often had concentrated on the process of our personal history and events.
provide the correct answer. of storing information, and the Tulvings experiments had
Tulving developed a series of failings of that process, Tulving demonstrated that organization of
experiments on this free recall made a distinction between two semantic information, such as lists
method, during which he noticed different processesstorage and of words, helps efcient recollection,
that people tend to group words retrieval of informationand and the same appeared to be true
together into meaningful categories; showed how the two were linked. of episodic memory. But where



In Tulvings free recall experiments, people were asked

to remember as many words as possible from a random list.
Forgotten words were often recalled using category cues.
They were stored in memory but temporarily inaccessible.
memorable eventsuch as the 9/11
terrorist attacksoccurs, are an
extreme example of this.
Tulving described recollection
from episodic memory as mental
time travel, involving us in a
Remembering is revisiting of the past to access
mental time travel. the memory. In his later work he
Endel Tulving pointed out that episodic memory
is unique in featuring a subjective
sense of time. Specic to humans,
it involves not merely awareness of
what has been, but also of what
may come about. This unique
ability allows us to reect on our
lives, worry about future events,
Emotional events such as weddings
give rise to episodic memories. These and make plans. It is what enables
are stored in such a way that the humankind to take full advantage
person remembering relives the event, of its awareness of its continued
in a form of time travel. existence in time and has allowed
us to transform the natural world
semantic memories are organized provide a retrieval cue for the into one of numerous civilizations
into meaningful categories of subject semantic memory Beijing, the and cultures. Through this facility,
matter, episodic memories are mention of 40th birthday might times arrow is bent into a loop.
organized by relation to the specic act as a cue for the retrieval of
time or circumstances in which what had been said over that Encoding information
they were originally stored. For dinner. The more strongly these Tulving realized that organization
example, a particular conversation autobiographical memories are is the key to efcient recall for both
may have taken place during a associated with the time and semantic and episodic memory, and
birthday dinner, and the memory circumstances of their occurrence, that the brain somehow organizes
of what was said would be stored the greater their accessibility is information so that specic facts
in association with that occasion. likely to be. Flashbulb memories, and events are pigeonholed with
Just as the category of city might which are stored when a highly related items. Recalling that specic

Endel Tulving Born the son of a judge in Tartu, University of Toronto, where
Estonia, Endel Tulving was he graduated in psychology in
educated at a private school for 1953, and took his MA degree in
boys, and although a model 1954. He then moved to Harvard
student, he was more interested where he gained a PhD for his
in sports than academic subjects. thesis on visual perception.
When Russia invaded in 1944, In 1956, Tulving returned to the
he and his brother escaped to University of Toronto, where he
Germany to nish their studies continues to teach to this day.
and did not see their parents again
until the death of Stalin 25 years Key works
later. After World War II, Tulving
worked as a translator for the 1972 Organization of Memory
American army and briey 1983 Elements of Episodic
attended medical school before Memory
emigrating to Canada in 1949. He 1999 Memory, Consciousness,
was accepted as a student at the and the Brain
information is then made easier Different types of memory are
by direction to the appropriate physically distinct, according to
pigeonholethe brain knows Tulving, because each behaves and Semantic memory
functions in a signicantly stores facts and
where to look for the memory it
different way. knowledge.
wants and can narrow down the
search. The implication, he
believed, is that the brain encodes
each memory for storage in long-term
memory, so that specic memories
can be located for recollection by a Episodic memory
stores events and
more general retrieval cue. The
cues that prompt episodic memory
are usually sensory. A specic sound,
such as a piece of music, or a scent
can trigger a complete memory.
Tulvingss theory of the Procedural memory
encoding specicity principle stores methods and
was especially applicable to techniques.
episodic memory. Memories of
specic past events are encoded
according to the time of their
occurrence, along with other recollection, even though the are active during encoding and
memories of the same time. He information is stored and available retrieval of memory, and establish
found that the most effective cue in long-term memory. that episodic memory is associated
for retrieving any specic episodic Unlike previous theories of with the medial temporal lobe and,
memory is the one which overlaps memory, Tulvings encoding principle specically, the hippocampus.
with it most, since this is stored made a distinction between memory Partly due to his unorthodox
together with the memory to be that is available and that which is and untutored approach, Tulving
retrieved. Retrieval cues are accessible. When someone is unable made innovative insights that
necessary to access episodic to recall a piece of information, it proved inspirational to other
memory, but not always sufcient, does not mean that it is forgotten psychologists, including some of
because sometimes the relationship in the sense that it has faded or his former students such as Daniel
is not close enough to allow simply disappeared from long-term Schacter. Tulvings focus on storage
memory; it may still be stored, and and retrieval provided a new way of
therefore be availablethe problem thinking about memory, but it was
is one of retrieval. perhaps his distinction between
semantic and episodic memory that
Scanning for memory was his breakthrough contribution.
Tulvings research into the storage It allowed subsequent psychologists
Relating what we know and retrieval of memory opened up to increase the complexity of the
about the behavior of memory a whole new area for psychological model to include such concepts as
to the underlying neural study. The publication of his procedural memory (remembering
structures is not ndings in the 1970s coincided how to do something), and the
at all obvious. Thats with a new determination by many difference between explicit memory
real science. cognitive psychologists to nd (of which we are consciously aware)
Endel Tulving conrmation of their theories in and implicit memory (of which we
neuroscience, using brain-imaging have no conscious awareness,
techniques that had just become but which nonetheless continues
available. In conjunction with to affect us). These topics remain
neuroscientists, Tulving was able of great interest to cognitive
to map the areas of the brain that psychologists today.


ow the mind makes use
IN CONTEXT of information gathered
from the external world
has been a major concern for
philosophers and psychologists
BEFORE throughout history. Exactly how
1637 Ren Descartes in his do we use the information gained
treatise Discourse on the through our senses? In the early
Method suggests that though 1970s, cognitive and mathematical
our senses can be deceived, psychologist Roger Shepard
we are thinking beings with proposed new theories of how An optical illusion creates confusion
the brain processes sense data. in the viewer, demonstrating that we are
innate knowledge. not just perceiving, but also attempting
Shepard argued that our brains
1920s Gestalt theorists study to t the sensory data to what we
not only process sense data, but also
already understand in the minds eye.
visual perception, nding that make inferences from it, based on an
people tend to view objects internal model of the physical world
comprising composite parts where we can visualize objects in world and mental visualization.
as a unied whole. three dimensions. The experiment Perception, Shepard said, is
he used to prove this, in which externally guided hallucination,
1958 Donald Broadbents book
subjects tried to ascertain whether and he described the processes
Perception and Communication
two tableseach drawn from a of dreaming and hallucination as
introduces a truly cognitive different anglewere the same, internally simulated perception.
approach to the psychology showed that we are able to perform Shepards research introduced
of perception. what Shepard called mental revolutionary techniques for
AFTER rotation: turning one of the tables identifying the hidden structure
1986 American experimental in our minds eye for comparison. of mental representations and
psychologist Michael Kubovy Shepard used a series of optical processes. His work in visual and
publishes The Psychology (and aural) illusions to demonstrate auditory perception, mental imagery,
that our brains interpret sense data and representation has inuenced
of Perspective and
using both knowledge of the external generations of psychologists.
Renaissance Art.
See also: Ren Descartes 2021 Wolfgang Khler 16061
Jerome Bruner 16465 Donald Broadbent 17885 Max Wertheimer 335


ntil very recently, our Israeli-American Daniel Kahneman,
IN CONTEXT perception of risk and with Amos Tversky, reexamined
the way that we make theories of how we make decisions
our decisions was considered to when faced with uncertainty, in
Prospect theory be more a matter of probability Judgment under Uncertainty:
BEFORE and statistics than psychology. Heuristics and Biases (1974). They
1738 The Dutch-Swiss However, cognitive psychology, found the general belief that people
mathematician Daniel with its emphasis on mental made decisions based on statistics
Bernoulli proposes the processes, brought the concepts and probability was not true in
expected utility hypothesis of perception and judgment to practice. Instead, people base their
to explain decision-making the eld of problem-solving, with decisions on rule of thumbon
preferences in situations some surprising results. specic examples or small samples.
Consequently, judgments can
involving risk.
frequently be wrong, because they
1917 Wolfgang Khler publishes are based on information that
The Mentality of Apeshis comes easily to mind, rather than
study of problem-solving that has actual probability.
in chimpanzees. Kahneman and Tversky noticed
After observing a long this experience-based method of
1940s Edward Tolmans run of red on the roulette problem-solving has a pattern: we
studies on animal behavior wheel, most people tend to overestimate the likelihood
open up a new area of erroneously believe that of things with low probability (such
research into motivation black is now due. as a plane crash), and underestimate
and decision-making. Daniel Kahneman & those with a higher probability (such
Amos Tversky as crashing while driving drunk).
These ndings formed the basis
1980 US economist Richard
of Kahneman and Tverskys prospect
Thaler publishes the rst theory, proposed in 1979, and led to
paper on the subject of the collaborative eld of psychology
behavioral economics: known as behavioral economics.
Toward a Positive Theory
of Consumer Choice. See also: Edward Tolman 7273 Wolfgang Khler 16061



When we are in a When we are in an
happy mood, we tend unhappy mood, we tend
Memory studies to store in memory the to store in memory the
BEFORE positive things negative things
1927 Bluma Zeigarnik that happen... that happen...
describes the Zeigarnik
effect of interrupted tasks
being better remembered
than uninterrupted ones.
1956 George Armitage ...because we pay more attention
Millers The Magical Number to the information that agrees with
7, Plus or Minus 2 provides a our mood.
cognitive model for storage
in short-term memory.
1972 Endel Tulving makes a
distinction between semantic
and episodic memory.
Events and emotion are stored
AFTER in memory together.
1977 Roger Brown coins the
term ashbulb memory for
autobiographical memory
connected with highly
emotional events.
2001 Daniel Schacter When we are happy, When we are unhappy,
publishes The Seven Sins of we nd it easier to we nd it easier to
Memory, which categorizes recall memories from recall memories from
the ways that memory can fail. a happy time. an unhappy time.
See also: Bluma Zeigarnik 162 George Armitage Miller 16873 Endel Tulving 18691 Paul Ekman 19697

Daniel Schacter 20809 Roger Brown 237

he 1950s saw a revival of that we form an association between
interest in the study of our emotional state and what is
memory. Increasingly going on around us, and the emotion
sophisticated models of short- and and the information are stored in
long-term memory were developed, memory together. It is then easier to
in order to explain how information recall facts that we learned when
is selected, organized, stored, and we were in the same mood as we
retrieved. The ways in which are when recollecting them.
memories could be forgotten or Bower also discovered that
distorted were also identied. emotion plays a part in the type of
information that the brain stores.
Memory and mood When we are happy, he observed
By the 1970s, the focus in learning that we tend to noticeand
theory and memory had moved to therefore rememberpositive
An idyllic vacation, according to
investigating why some memories things; when we are sad, negative Bower, is more easily recalled when we
are better stored or more easily things attract our attention and are are in a happy mood. Bad memories of
retrieved than others. One of the committed to memory more easily. the trip are likely to be forgotten, or
foremost psychologists in the eld, For example, Bower found that only remembered when we are unhappy.
Gordon H. Bower, had noticed that unhappy people recalled details of
emotion appeared to impact on a sad story better than those who Bowers ndings led him to study
memory. Bower carried out studies were happy when they read it. He people in various emotional states,
in which people learned lists of called this mood-congruent retrospectively observing their
words while in different moods, and processing, and concluded that videotaped interactions with others.
later had to recall them, again when episodic memoryof events, not Memory and judgement of past
in varying emotional states. He just words or factsis especially behavior varied with current mood.
uncovered what he called mood- linked to emotions. The events and This research helped Bower to
dependent retrieval: whatever a emotions are stored together, and rene his ideas about emotion and
person has learned when unhappy we remember best the events that memory, and inspired further
is easier to recall when they are match our mood, both when they psychological examination of the
again unhappy. Bower concluded occurred, and when recalling them. role emotions play in our lives.

Gordon H. Bower Stanford University, California,

where he taught until his
Gordon H. Bower was brought retirement in 2005. His research
up in Scio, Ohio. At high school, there helped to develop the eld
he was more interested in of cognitive science, and in 2005
baseball and playing jazz than Bower was awarded the US People who are happy
studying, until a teacher National Medal of Science for during the initial experience
introduced him to the works of his contributions to cognitive
Sigmund Freud. He went on to and mathematical psychology.
learn the happy events better;
graduate in psychology at Case angry people learn anger-
Western Reserve University, Key works provoking events better.
Cleveland, switching to Yale Gordon H. Bower
for his PhD in learning theory, 1966, 1975 Theories of Learning
which he completed in 1959. (with Ernest Hilgard)
From Yale, Bower moved on 1981 Mood and Memory
to the internationally acclaimed 1991 Psychology of Learning
psychology department of and Motivation (Volume 27)

PAUL EKMAN (1934 )

motions, and more When Ekman began his research
IN CONTEXT especially emotional in the 1970s, it was assumed that
disorders, played a large we learn to physically express
part in psychotherapy from its emotions according to a set of
Psychology of emotions
beginnings, but they were seen social conventions, which differ
BEFORE more as symptoms to be treated from culture to culture. Ekman
1960s The study of isolated than as something to be examined traveled widely to all corners of the
tribal communities by in their own right. One of the rst world, rst photographing people in
American anthropologist to realize that emotions deserved the developed countries, such as
Margaret Mead suggests as much attention as thought Japan and Brazil, and then people
that facial expressions are processes, drives, and behavior in far-ung, cut-off places without
culture-specic. was Paul Ekman, who came to access to radio or television, such
the subject through his research as the jungles of Papua New
1960s American psychologist into nonverbal behavior and Guinea. He found tribespeople
Silvan Tomkins (Ekmans facial expressions. could interpret facial expressions as
mentor) proposes his Affect
Theory of Emotions, distinct
from the basic Freudian drives
of sex, fear, and the will to live. Emotions can
Emotions can and override some of our
1970s Gordon H. Bower often do start before
uncovers and denes the most fundamental
our conscious mind is drives (disgust can
links between emotional aware of them. override hunger).
states and memory.
2000s The ndings of
Ekmans work on facial
expressions and deception
are incorporated into security It is therefore Emotions are
procedures used by public difcult to control powerful and difcult
transport systems. what we become to hold back, like a
emotional about. runaway train.
See also: William James 3845 Gordon H. Bower 19495 Nico Frijda 32425 Charlotte Bhler 336 Ren Diatkine
338 Stanley Schachter 338

The Six Basic Emotions

Anger Disgust Fear Happiness Sadness Surprise

well as anyone in more globally- mind has time to register the Ekman that a better understanding
aware countries, which suggests causes of that emotion. Ekman of emotions would help to overcome
that facial expressions are universal inferred not only that our faces can some mental disorders. We may be
products of human evolution. reveal our inner emotional state, unable to control our emotions, but
but that the emotions responsible we may be able to make changes to
Basic emotions for these involuntary expressions are the things that trigger them and
Ekman came up with six basic more powerful than psychologists the behavior they lead to.
emotionsanger, disgust, fear, had previously thought. Running parallel to his work
happiness, sadness, and surprise In Emotions Revealed, Ekman on emotions, Ekman pioneered
and because of their ubiquity, states that emotions can be more research into deception and the
concluded they must be important powerful than the Freudian drives ways we try to hide our feelings.
to psychological make-up. He noted of sex, hunger, and even the will to He identied small tell-tale signs,
that facial expressions linked to live. For example, embarassment or which he called microexpressions,
these emotions are involuntary fear can override libido, preventing detectable when someone is either
we react automatically to things a satisfactory sex life. Extreme consciously or unconsciously
that trigger these emotional unhappiness can override the will concealing something. This has
responsesand that this reaction to live. The power of the runaway proved useful in devising security
often happens before our conscious train of emotions convinced measures to counter terrorism.

Paul Ekman Paul Ekman was born and spent nonverbal behavior and facial
his early childhood in Newark, expressions. This work led to his
New Jersey. At the outbreak of studies of the concealment of
World War II, his family moved emotions in facial expressions,
west to Washington, then Oregon, which in turn took Ekman deep
and eventually southern California. into the then-unexplored eld of
Aged just 15, Ekman took up a the psychology of emotions. He
place at the University of Chicago, was appointed Professor of
where he became interested in Psychology at UCSF in 1972,
Freud and psychotherapy, and and remained there until his
went on to study for his doctorate retirement in 2004.
in clinical psychology at Adelphi
University, New York. After a brief Key works
spell working for the US Army,
he moved to the University of 1985 Telling Lies
California, San Francisco (UCSF), 2003 Emotions Revealed
where he began his research into 2008 Emotional Awareness


uring the cognitive Carl Rogers were beginning to
IN CONTEXT revolution, there was a think about what constituted a
growing movement in good and happy life, rather than
clinical psychology away from merely alleviating the misery of
Positive psychology
seeing patients solely in terms depression and anxiety. From this
BEFORE of their disorders, toward a more grew a movement of positive
1943 Abraham Maslows A holistic, humanistic approach. psychology, which concentrated
Theory of Human Motivation Psychologists such as Erich on nding ways to achieve this
lays the foundations for a Fromm, Abraham Maslow, and good and happy life.
humanistic psychology.
1951 Carl Rogers publishes
When we engage in an activity that we enjoy and that gives
Client-Centered Therapy, a
enough challenge to our skills
humanistic approach to
1960s Aaron Beck introduces we become absorbed in that activity and reach
cognitive therapy as an a state of ow in which
alternative to psychoanalysis.
1990s Martin Seligman
switches from learned
helplessness and depression we are we feel a we feel a we have a
to positive psychology. totally sense of sense of feeling of
focused. serenity. timelessness. inner clarity.
1997 Cskszentmihlyi works
on The GoodWork Project with
William Damon and Howard Above all, we are not conscious of ourselves or the
Gardner, publishing Good Work: world around us.
When Excellence and Ethics
Meet and Good Business:
Leadership, Flow, and the
Making of Meaning in 2002. Flow is similar to a state of ecstasy.
See also: Erich Fromm 12429 Carl Rogers 13037 Abraham Maslow 13839 Aaron Beck 17477

Martin Seligman 20001 Jon Kabat-Zinn 210

Cskszentmihlyi found that all reality, totally separated from the

these people described a similar cares and worries of ordinary life.
sensation when they were totally Flow, Cskszentmihlyi felt, is key
engaged in an activity they enjoyed to optimal enjoyment of any activity,
and could do well. They all reported and consequently to a fullling life.
achieving a state of mind with no But how can ow be achieved?
sense of self, in which things came Cskszentmihlyi studied cases of
to them automaticallya feeling people who regularly reached this
of ow. It starts, he said, with ecstatic state, and realized that
A good jazz musician will pass into a narrowing of attention on a it always occurred when the
an almost trancelike state when he is clearly dened goal. We feel challenge of an activity matched a
playing. Engulfed by the ecstatic feeling involved, concentrated, absorbed. persons skills; the task was doable,
of ow, he becomes totally absorbed
We know what must be done, and but also extended their capabilities
by his music and performance.
we get immediate feedback as to and demanded total concentration.
Central to the new psychology was how well we are doing. A musician Only a reasonable balance of ability
the concept of ow, devised by knows instantly if the notes he and difculty could lead to ow. If
Mihly Cskszentmihlyi in the plays sound as they should; a someones skills were not up to the
1970s, and fully explained in his tennis player knows the ball he task, this led to anxiety, and if the
book Flow: The Psychology of hits will reach its destination. task was too easily done, it led to
Optimal Experience in 1990. The boredom or apathy.
idea came to him from interviewing State of ecstasy Cskszentmihlyis concept of
people who appeared to get a lot People experiencing ow also ow was eagerly picked up by other
out of life, either in their work or describe feelings of timelessness, advocates of positive psychology,
their leisure activitiesnot only clarity, and serenity, which led and became an integral part of
creative professionals such as Cskszentmihlyi to liken it to a this new, optimistic approach.
artists and musicians, but people state of ecstasy (in its truest sense, Cskszentmihlyi himself saw ow
from all walks of life, including from the Greek ekstasis, meaning as a vital element in activity of all
surgeons and business leaders, and being outside oneself). A major kinds, and thought it especially
those who found satisfaction in part of the enjoyment of ow is the important in making work more
pursuits such as sports and games. sense of being outside everyday rewarding and meaningful.

Mihly Mihly Cskszentmihlyi was Cskszentmihlyi remained

Cskszentmihlyi born in Fiume, Italy (now Rijeka, at the University of Chicago,
Croatia), where his father was teaching and developing his
posted as a Hungarian diplomat. ideas on ow, from 1969 to
The family became exiles in Rome 2000, when he was appointed
when Hungary was taken over by Professor of Psychology and
the Communists in 1948. Management at Claremont
As a teenager, Cskszentmihlyi Graduate University, California.
attended a talk given by Carl Jung
in Switzerland, which inspired him Key works
to study psychology. A scholarship
brought him to the University of 1975 Beyond Boredom and
Chicago; he graduated in 1959, Anxiety
and received his PhD in 1965. 1990 Flow: The Psychology
While still a student, he married of Optimal Experience
the writer Isabella Selenga, and in 1994 The Evolving Self
1968 became a US citizen. 1996 Creativity


IN CONTEXT There are three kinds of happy life.

Positive psychology
1950s Carl Rogers develops
the concept and practice of The Good The Meaningful The Pleasant
client-centered therapy. Lifepursuing Lifeacting Lifesocializing
personal growth and in the service of and seeking
1954 Abraham Maslow uses achieving ow. something greater pleasure.
the term positive psychology than yourself.
for the rst time, in his book
Motivation and Personality.
1960s Aaron Beck exposes
the weaknesses of traditional
psychoanalytical therapy, and
proposes cognitive therapy. These bring lasting Social relationships
happiness, but this do not guarantee
AFTER happiness cannot be high happiness,
1990 Mihly Cskszentmihlyi achieved without but it does not appear
publishes Flow: The Psychology social relationships. to occur without them.
of Optimal Experience, based
on his research into the links
between meaningful, engaging
activity and happiness.

hile experimental cognitive therapies still focused
1994 Jon Kabat-Zinns psychology after World largely on alleviating unhappy
Wherever You Go, There You War II became deeply conditions rather than on creating
Are introduces the idea of concerned with the cognitive and promoting happier ones.
mindfulness meditation to processes of the brain, clinical Martin Seligman, whose theory of
cope with stress, anxiety, psychology continued to examine learned helplessness (the spiral of
pain, and illness. ways to treat disorders such as acquiring pessimistic attitudes in
depression and anxiety. The new illnesses such as depression) had
See also: Erich Fromm 12429 Carl Rogers 13037 Abraham Maslow 13839

Aaron Beck 17477 Mihly Cskszentmihlyi 19899 Jon Kabat-Zinn 210

much pleasure as possible,

appeared to bring happiness,
though Seligman found this was
often short-lived. Less obviously,
the good life, or being successfully
engaged in relationships, work,
Good social relationships
and play, gave a deeper, more
are, like food and lasting happiness. Similarly, the
thermoregulation, meaningful life, or acting in the
universally important service of others or something
to human mood. bigger than oneself, led to great Martin Seligman
Martin Seligman satisfaction and fullment.
Seligman also observed that Born in Albany, New York,
good and meaningful lifestyles Martin Seligman took his
rst degree in philosophy at
both involve activities that his
Princeton University in 1964.
colleague Mihly Cskszentmihlyi He then turned his attention
had described as generating ow, to psychology, gaining a
or deep mental engagement. The doctorate from the University
led to more successful treatments pleasant life clearly does not involve of Pennsylvania in 1967. He
in the 1980s, believed that what ow, but Seligman did nd that all taught at Cornell University,
psychology offered was good, but the extremely happy people he New York, for three years,
it could offer more. He felt that studied were also very sociable, before returning in 1970 to
therapy should be as concerned and in a relationship. He concluded Pennsylvania, where he has
with strength as with weakness; that social relationships do not been Professor of Psychology
as interested in building the best guarantee high happiness, but it since 1976.
things in life as repairing the does not appear to occur without Seligmans research into
worst. Having studied philosophy, them. A good and meaningful life depression during the 1970s
he likened the task of his positive may bring eudaemonia, but having led to a theory of learned
helplessness, and a method
psychology to that of Aristotle a pleasant life as well will intensify
of countering the pervasive
seeking eudaemoniathe happy whatever happiness you achieve.
pessimism associated with it.
life. Like his philosophical But after an incident with his
forebears, Seligman found this was daughter that highlighed his
not a matter of relieving or removing own innate negativity, he was
things that make us unhappy, but persuaded that focusing on
of encouraging those things that positive strengths, rather than
might make us happyand rst he negative weaknesses, was key
had to discover what they were. to happiness. Regarded as one
of the founding fathers of
Happy lives modern positive psychology,
Seligman noticed that extremely Seligman instigated the
happy, fullled people tend to get Positive Psychology Center at
on with others, and enjoy company. the University of Pennsylvania.
They seemed to lead what he called
Key works
the pleasant life, one of the three
Enjoying social events and the
distinct types of happy life that company of others may not offer deep 1975 Helplessness
he identied, the others being the intellectual or emotional satisfaction, 1991 Learned Optimism
good life and the meaningful life. but Seligman observed that it was an 2002 Authentic Happiness
The pleasant life, or seeking as essential part of being truly happy.

oward the end of the
IN CONTEXT 19th century, Sigmund
Freud claimed that the
mind has a way of defending itself
against unacceptable or painful
BEFORE thoughts and impulses, by using an
Human remembering
1896 Sigmund Freud proposes unconscious mechanism that he
called repression to keep them
does not work like
the notion of repressed memory. a videotape recorder
hidden from awareness. Freud later
1932 Frederic Bartlett claims modied his thinking to a more or a movie camera.
that memory is subject to general theory of repressed desires Elizabeth Loftus
elaboration, omission, and and emotions. However, the idea
distortion in Remembering. that the memory of a traumatic
1947 Gordon Allport and Leo event could be repressed and stored
beyond conscious recall became
Postman conduct experiments
accepted by many psychologists.
that demonstrate various types
The rise of various forms of
of nondeliberate misreporting. psychotherapy in the 20th century particular was an attractive area
AFTER focused attention on repression, and for research, and repressed and
1988 The self-help book for the possibility of retrieving repressed recovered memory was about to
sexual abuse survivors, The memories became associated with become a hot topic, as a number
Courage to Heal, by Ellen Bass psychoanalysis so strongly that even of high-prole child abuse cases
and Laura Davis, is inuential Hollywood dramas began to explore reached the courts in the 1980s.
in popularizing recovered the link. Memory in general was a
memory therapy in the 1990s. popular subject among experimental Suggestible memory
psychologists too, particularly as During the course of her research,
2001 In The Seven Sins of behaviorism began to wane after Loftus grew skeptical about the idea
Memory, Daniel Schacter World War II, and the cognitive of recovering repressed memories.
describes the seven different revolution was suggesting new Previous research by Frederic
ways in which our memories models for how the brain processed Bartlett, Gordon Allport, and Leo
can malfunction. information into memory. By the Postman had already shown that
time Elizabeth Loftus began her even in the normal working of the
studies, long-term memory in human brain, our ability to retrieve

Elizabeth Loftus Born Elizabeth Fishman in Los and adjunct professor of law. She
Angeles in 1944, Loftus received was appointed distinguished
her rst degree at the University of professor at the University of
California with the intention of California in 2002, and was the
becoming a high school math highest-ranked woman in a
teacher. While at UCLA, however, scientically quantied ranking
she started classes in psychology, of the 20th centurys most
and in 1970 received a PhD in important psychologists.
psychology at Stanford University.
It was here that she rst became Key works
interested in the subject of long-
term memory, and met and married 1979 Eyewitness Testimony
fellow psychology student Geoffrey 1991 Witness for the Defense
Loftus, whom she later divorced. (with Katherine Ketcham)
She taught at the University of 1994 The Myth of Repressed
Washington, Seattle, for 29 years, Memory (with Katherine
becoming professor of psychology Ketcham)
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Bluma Zeigarnik 162 George Armitage Miller 16873 Endel Tulving 18691

Gordon H. Bower 19495 Daniel Schacter 20809 Roger Brown 237 Frederic Bartlett 33536

information from memory can be seen. Loftus found that the phrasing later versions of the experiment,
unreliable; Loftus believed that this of questions had a signicant participants were verbally given
must also be true of the recollection inuence on how people reported false information about some
of events that are so traumatic events. For example, when asked details of the accident (such as
that they are repressedperhaps to estimate the speed of the cars road signs around the scene), and
even more so, given the emotive involved, the answers varied these appeared as recollections in
nature of the events. widely, depending on whether many of the participants reports.
Loftus began her research into the questioner had used the
the fallibility of recollection in the words bumped, collided, or Legal implications
early 1970s, with a series of simple smashed, to describe the It became clear to Loftus that
experiments designed to test the collision. They were also asked if recollection can be distorted by
veracity of eyewitness testimony. there was any broken glass after suggestions and leading questions,
Participants were shown lm clips the accident, and the answers made after the event in question.
of trafc accidents and then asked again correlated to the wording Misinformation can be planted
questions about what they had of the question of speed. In into the recollection of an observer.

We believe that our

recollection of a traumatic
event is accurate, but

it may have been it may have been

shaped by a it may have been it may have been altered by our
leading question suggested to us by altered by subsequent current emotions
or false information. someone we trust. experiences. or ideas.

But because of its emotional

importance we appear to
remember it vividly.

What we believe with

all our hearts is not
necessarily the truth.
false, and had evolved because
Eileen had witnessed her father
commit other cruel actions, and
one brutal image overlapped
A another. Loftus successfully argued
in court that a combination of
suggestion during hypnosis, existing
frightening memories, and Eileens
rage and grief had created a
completely false repressed memory.
The case of Paul Ingram (which
B Loftus was not involved in) also
pointed toward the possibility of
implanting false memories. Arrested
in 1988 for sexually abusing his
daughters, Ingram initially denied
the charges, but after several
C months of questioning confessed to
them along with a number of other
cases of rape and even murder. A
psychologist involved in the case,
In a 1974 experiment Loftus showed a group of people Richard Ofshe, grew suspicious
a lm of cars colliding, then asked them how fast the cars
bumped, collided, or smashed into each other. Her and suggested to Ingram he was
choice of verb determined their estimate of car speeds. guilty of another sexual offence
but this time, one that was provably
fabricated. Ingram again initially
The title of her 1979 book describing totally false. Among the many denied the allegation, but later
her experiments, Eyewitness cases in which she was involved, made a detailed confession.
Testimony, shows that Loftus was that of George Franklin perfectly
well aware of the implications of illustrates the different aspects of Lost in the mall
this misinformation effect, not what came to be known as false The evidence for the implantation of
only for the psychological theory memory syndrome. Franklin was false memories was still anecdotal,
of memory, but also for the legal convicted in 1990 for the murder however, and far from conclusive;
process. Anticipating the of a child who was best friends Loftus suffered harsh criticism for
controversy that was to follow, with his daughter, Eileen. Her what were then considered to be
she wrote that the unreliability of eyewitness testimony, 20 years controversial opinions. So she
eyewitness identication evidence after the murder, was crucial to the decided to collect irrefutable
poses one of the most serious conviction. Loftus found numerous evidence through an experiment
problems in the administration of discrepancies in Eileens evidence, that aimed to deliberately implant
criminal justice and civil litigation. and proved her memories to be false memories. This was her 1995
incorrect and unreliable in several Lost in the Mall experiment.
False memory syndrome respects, but the jury nonetheless Loftus presented each of the
Loftus was soon to be increasingly found Franklin guilty. participants with four stories from
involved in forensic psychology, In 1995, the conviction was their own childhood that had
as an expert witness in the spate overturned because the court had apparently been remembered
of child abuse cases of the 1980s. been deprived of crucial evidence: and supplied by members of the
What she realized then was that the fact that Eileen had recovered participants family. In fact, only
memories could not only be the memory during hypnotherapy. three of the four stories were true;
distorted by subsequent suggestion Loftus believed that Eileens memory the fourth, about getting lost in a
and incorrect details introduced by of seeing her father commit the shopping mall, was concocted for
misinformation, but may even be murder was sincerely believed, but the experiment. Plausible details,
such as a description of the mall, disturbing dream is more vividly
were worked out in collaboration recalled and even mistaken for
with the relatives. Interviewed reality. It was this idea that
about these stories one week later prompted her to say, what we
and then again two weeks later, the believe with all our hearts is not
participants were asked to rate how necessarily the truth.
In real life, as well as in
well they remembered the events in However, in 1986, psychologists
the four stories. At both interviews, John Yuille and Judith Cutshall
experiments, people can
25% of the participants claimed to did manage to conduct a study of
come to believe things that
have some memory of the mall memory following a traumatic never really happened.
incident. After the experiment, situation. They found that witnesses Elizabeth Loftus
participants were debriefed and to an actual incident of gun shooting
told that one of the stories was had remarkably accurate memories,
falsedid they know which it was? even six months after the event, and
Of the 24 participants, 19 correctly resisted attempts by the researchers
chose the mall as the false memory; to distort their memories though
but ve participants had grown to misleading questions.
sincerely believe in a false memory used to recover memory, including
of a mildly traumatic event. Questionable therapy psychotherapeutic techniques such
Loftus had provided an insight Loftus points out that her ndings as regression, dream work, and
into how false memories might form do not deny that crimes such as hypnosis. Consequently, it raised
in real, everyday settings. For ethical abuse may have taken place, nor can the possibility that false memories
reasons Loftus could not devise an she prove that repressed memories can be implanted during the
experiment to test whether a truly do not exist; she merely stresses the therapeutic process by suggestion,
traumatic false memory (such as unreliability of recovered memory, and in the 1990s several US
child abuse) would be even more and insists that courts must seek patients who claimed they were
vividly recalled and sincerely evidence beyond this. Her work victims of false memory syndrome
believed, but she suggested that it has also called into question the successfully sued their therapists.
would, in the same way that a more validity of the various methods Unsurprisingly, this apparent attack
on the very idea of repressed
Despite the unreliability of
eyewitness testimony, Loftus found memory earned an adverse reaction
that jurors tend to give more weight from some psychotherapists, and
to it than any other form of evidence split opinion among psychologists
when reaching a verdict. working in the eld of memory.
Reaction from the legal world was
also divided, but after the hysteria
surrounding a series of child abuse
scandals in the 1990s had died
down, guidelines incorporating
Loftuss theories on the reliability
of eyewitness testimony were
Do you swear to tell adopted by many legal systems.
the truth, the whole truth, Today, Loftus is acknowledged
or whatever it is you as an authority on the subject of
think you remember? false memory. Her theories have
Elizabeth Loftus become accepted by mainstream
psychology and have inspired
further research into the fallibility
of memory in general, notably
by Steven Schacter in his book,
The Seven Sins of Memory.



orgetting, Daniel Schacter The rst three Schacter calls sins
IN CONTEXT believes, is an essential of omission, or forgetting, and the
function of human memory, last four are sins of commission,
allowing it to work efciently. Some or remembering. Each sin can
Memory studies
of the experiences we go through lead to a particular type of error
BEFORE and the information we learn may in recollecting information.
1885 Hermann Ebbinghaus need to be remembered, but much The rst of the sins, transience,
describes the forgetting is irrelevant and would take up involves the deterioration of memory,
curve in Memory. valuable storage space in our especially of episodic memory (the
memory, so is deleted, to use an memory of events), over time. This
1932 Frederic Bartlett lists analogy with computers that is is due to two factors: we can recall
seven ways in which a story often made in cognitive psychology. more of a recent event than one in
may be misremembered in Sometimes, however, the process the distant past; and each time we
his book Remembering. of selection fails. What should have remember the event (retrieve the
1956 George Armitage Miller been tagged as useful information memory), it is reprocessed in the
publishes his paper The and stored for future use is removed brain, altering it slightly.
Magical Number Seven, from memory and therefore forgotten;
orconverselytrivial or unwanted
Plus or Minus Two.
information that should have been
1972 Endel Tulving makes the removed is kept in our memory.
distinction between semantic Storage is not the only area of
and episodic memory. memory functioning with potential
problems. The process of retrieval We dont want a
AFTER can cause confusion of information, memory that is going
1995 Elizabeth Loftus studies giving us distorted recollections. to store every bit of every
retroactive memory in The Schacter lists seven ways in which experience. We would
Formation of False Memories. memory can let us down: transience, be overwhelmed with
2005 US psychologist Susan absent-mindedness, blocking, clutter of useless trivia.
Clancy studies apparent misattribution, suggestibility, bias, Daniel Schacter
memories of alien abduction. and persistence. In a reference to
the Seven Deadly Sins, and with a
nod to George Armitage Millers
magical number seven, he calls
these the seven sins of memory.
See also: Hermann Ebbinghaus 4849 Bluma Zeigarnik 162 George Armitage Miller 16873 Endel Tulving 18691

Gordon H. Bower 19495 Elizabeth Loftus 20207 Frederic Bartlett 33536

Absent-mindedness, the sin that

manifests itself in mislaid keys and
The Seven Sins of Memory
missed appointments, is not so
much an error of recollection but
of selection for storage. Sometimes transience.
we do not pay enough attention at Sometimes we forget
the time we do things (such as important things
when we put down keys), so the because of
information is treated by the brain
as trivial and not stored for later
use. In contrast to this is the sin of
blocking, where a stored memory blocking.
cannot be retrieved, often because
another memory is getting in its
way. An example of this is the
tip-of-the-tongue syndrome, And sometimes our
memories become misattribution.
where we can nearlybut not
confused through
quitegrasp a word from memory
that we know very well.
Sins of commission
The sins of commission are
slightly more complex, but no less
common. In misattribution, the bias.
information is recalled correctly,
And sometimes we
but the source of that information
remember things we want
is wrongly recalled. It is similar in to forget through
its effect to suggestibility, where persistence.
recollections are inuenced by the
way in which they are recalled, for
example, in response to a leading
question. The sin of bias also Daniel Schacter whose work on episodic versus
involves the distortion of recollection: semantic memory was causing
this is when a persons opinions Daniel Schacter was born in lively debate at the time. In
and feelings at the time of recalling New York in 1952. A high-school 1981, he established a unit for
an event color its remembrance. course sparked his interest in memory disorders at Toronto,
Finally, the sin of persistence is psychology, which he went on to with Tulving and Morris
an example of the memory working study at the University of North Moscovitch. Ten years later, he
too well. This is when disturbing or Carolina. After graduation, he became Professor of Psychology
upsetting information that has worked for two years in at Harvard, where he set up the
been stored in memory becomes the perception and memory Schacter Memory Laboratory.
intrusively and persistently recalled, laboratory of Durham Veterans
Hospital, observing and testing Key works
from minor embarrassments to
patients with organic memory
extremely distressing memories. disorders. He then began 1982 Stranger Behind the
However, the sins arent aws, postgraduate studies at Toronto Engram
Schacter insists, but the costs we University, Canada, under the 1996 Searching for Memory
pay for a complex system that works supervision of Endel Tulving, 2001 The Seven Sins of Memory
exceptionally well most of the time.


ollowing World War II, there Based Stress Reduction (MBSR),
IN CONTEXT was an increased interest which integrates meditation into
in Eastern philosophies the framework of cognitive therapy.
throughout Europe and the US,
Mindfulness meditation
bringing ideas such as meditation Practicing mindfulness
BEFORE into mainstream culture. The Central to Kabat-Zinns approach
c.500 BCE Siddhartha medical benets of meditation is mindfulness. In this form of
Gautama (the Buddha) attracted the interest of American meditation, the object is to observe
includes right mindfulness biologist and psychologist Jon Kabat- thoughts and mental processes (as
as the seventh step of the Zinn, who went on to pioneer an well as body or physical processes)
Eightfold Path to end suffering. approach known as Mindfulness- in a detached, decentered, and
nonjudgemental way; to stay in the
1960s Vietnamese Buddhist body, and to watch whats going on
monk Thich Nhat Hanh in the mind, learning neither to reject
popularizes mindful things nor to pursue things, but
meditation in the US. just to let them be and let them go.
In mindfulness meditation, we
learn to observe thought processes
1990s Mindfulness-Based calmly, without identifying with
Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) them, and realize that our minds
is developed by Zindel Segal, have a life of their own. A thought
Mark Williams, and John of failure, for instance, is seen as
Teasdale for the treatment simply an event in the mind, not as
of depression, and is based a springboard to the conclusion I
on Kabat-Zinns MBSR. am a failure. With practice we can
1993 Dialectical Behavior learn to see mind and body as one
Buddhist meditation has encouraged
Therapy uses mindfulness the practice of mindfulness for more than
thing: a wholeness. Each of us is
without meditation for people 2,000 years, but its mental and physical more than just a body, says Kabat-
health benets were not clinically tested Zinn, and more than the thoughts
too disturbed to achieve the
and proven until the early 1990s. that go through our minds.
necessary state of mind.
See also: Joseph Wolpe 8687 Fritz Perls 11217 Erich Fromm 12429

Aaron Beck 17477 Neal Miller 337 John D. Teasdale 339




he debate over how much futile. The third fear is that if our
IN CONTEXT of our behavior is innate behavior is determined by genes,
(inborn) and how much can we can abdicate responsibility for
be attributed to our environment our misdemeanors, and blame them
Evolutionary psychology
dates back thousands of years. Some on our genetic make-up. The nal
BEFORE cognitive psychologists have claimed fear, Pinker says, is the most
1859 Biologist Charles Darwin that not only do we inherit certain fundamental. This is the fear that
says that emotion, perception, psychological characteristics they if we accept that we are shaped by
and cognition are evolutionary are also subject to the same sort of evolutionary psychology, our ner
adaptations. natural selection as our physical feelingsour perceptions, motives,
characteristics. They point out that and emotionswill be reduced to
1960s Noam Chomsky claims the mind is a product of the brain, mere processes of our genetic
that the capacity for language and the brain is shaped by genetics. evolution, and so biology will
is an innate ability. This new eld of evolutionary debunk all that we hold sacred.
1969 John Bowlby argues that psychology has met with strong
the attachment of newborn opposition, but one of its champions
babies to their mothers is is the Canadian psychologist Steven
Pinker, who has identied four fears
genetically programmed.
that lie behind our reluctance to
1976 In The Selsh Gene, accept evolutionary psychology
British biologist Richard despite the empirical evidence. The The Blank Slate
Dawkins states that behavioral rst fear is one of inequality: if the promised to make racism,
tendencies evolve through mind is a blank slate when we sexism, and class prejudice
interaction with others over a are born, we are all born equal. But factually untenable.
long period of time. if we inherit mental traits, some Steven Pinker
people have a natural advantage.
AFTER The second fear is that if certain
2000 In The Mating Mind, imperfections are innate, they are
American evolutionary not susceptible to change, so social
psychologist Geoffrey Miller reform to help the disadvantaged is
says that human intelligence
is shaped by sexual selection. See also: Francis Galton 2829 Konrad Lorenz 77 Roger Brown 237

John Bowlby 27477 Noam Chomsky 29497



he second half of the 20th trauma, Salkovskis explained
IN CONTEXT century saw a profound the problem in terms of cognitive
change in clinical psychology, and offered a cognitive
psychology. Psychoanalysis was and behavioral treatment.
Cognitive behavioral
seen by many psychologists as less
than scientic, and by the 1960s it Obsessive thoughts
BEFORE was replaced as the treatment for Salkovskis suggests that obsessive-
1950s Joseph Wolpe applies some disorders by behaviorist compulsive disorder has its basis in
behaviorist ideas to clinical therapies, or the newer cognitive the sort of unwelcome and intrusive
psychology in techniques such therapy developed by Aaron Beck. thoughts that we all have from time
as systematic desensitization. Combinations of these approaches, to timethe idea that something
under the umbrella term cognitive terrible is about to happen, or that
1952 Behavior and personality behavioral therapy (CBT), evolved in we will suffer or cause some awful
theorist Hans J. Eysenck the 1980s, pioneered in Britain by misfortune. Most of the time, we
causes controversy with Paul Salkovskis. CBT, he found, was can put these thoughts out of our
claims that psychotherapy has especially successful in treating minds and carry on with life, but
no benecial effect. obsessive-compulsive disorder sometimes they are more difcult
(OCD); where psychoanalysis had to shake off. At the extreme end of
1955 Albert Ellis offers an
failed to nd a root cause for the the scale, the thoughts become
alternative to traditional
disorder in repression or past obsessive and bring with them a
psychotherapy with his
feeling of dread and responsibility.
Rational Emotive Behavior People predisposed to these kinds
Therapy (REBT). of obsessive thoughts nd it
1960s Aaron Beck questions difcult to make a rational
whether psychoanalytical appraisal of their importance,
therapy is effective; he goes on and overestimate not only any
to develop cognitive therapy. risk of harm, but also the amount
of control they have to prevent it.
2000s Cognitive behavioral
Compulsive activities such as
therapy becomes a standard repeated hand washing may be an
treatment for anxiety, panic attempt to control intrusive thoughts.
attacks, and other disorders. Shakespeares Lady Macbeth is driven
by guilt to continually wash her hands.
See also: Joseph Wolpe 8687 Fritz Perls 11217 Albert Ellis 14245

Aaron Beck 17477

We all have unwelcome intrusive thoughts.

But some people have trouble shaking them off, and the
thoughts become over-important and obsessional.

Paul Salkovskis
A graduate of the Institute
of Psychiatry, London in 1979,
They overestimate the threat They feel responsible Paul Salkovskis took up a post
posed by these thoughts. for any harm implied by at the University of Oxford
these intrusive thoughts. in 1985 to research panic
disorders. His interest in the
application of cognitive theory
to anxiety disorders led to
his appointment as a Senior
Fellow and later as Professor
They therefore feel compelled to take action to counter of Cognitive Psychology.
the threats and control the thoughts. While at Oxford, the
emphasis of his work moved
to the treatment of obsessive-
compulsive disorder using
cognitive behavioral therapy.
In 2000, he became Professor
Compulsive behavior rituals are of Clinical Psychology and
attempts to control intrusive thoughts. Applied Science at the
Institute of Psychiatry,
and Clinical Director in the
Centre for Anxiety Disorders
Obsessive thoughts of catching and helped through cognitive therapy to and Trauma. Since 2010,
passing on a deadly disease, for recognize the obsessional thoughts Salkovskis has been based
example, may result in compulsive for what they are, making a more at the University of Bath,
cleaning or hand washing. There is rational appraisal of the risk and, where he is establishing a
also a feeling of a responsibility to crucially, of how much responsibility specialist CBT research and
act, even if the action is out of he or she has for taking preventative treatment center.
proportion to the risk. The resulting action. This cognitive approach
compulsive actions can become helps reduce the distress. Alongside Key works
ritual behavior patterns, carried out this, behavioral therapy techniques,
repeatedly in an attempt to gain such as desensitization (gradual 1998 Panic Disorder
control over a perceived threat. exposure to the perceived threat) 1999 Understanding and
Treating Obsessive-
Cognitive behavioral therapy help the patient to control his
Compulsive Disorder
combines cognitive and behavioral or her compulsive behavior. 2000 Causing Harm
techniques to address both the Salkovskis uses CBT techniques and Allowing Harm
cause and the symptoms of OCD to successfully treat anxiety, (with A. Wroe)
to great effect. First, the patient is panic attacks, and phobias.

Gordon Allport
John Dewey Kurt Lewin establishes publishes On the
publishes The his eld theory, Nature of Prejudice,
Need for Social claiming that behavior which establishes the Serge Moscovici
Psychology, is determined by the theoretical foundations introduces the
describing man as a life space (totality) of a for the study of concept of social
social animal. persons situation. prejudice. representations.

1917 1940S 1954 1961

1935 1951 1959 1963

Muzafer Sherif carries Solomon Aschs Erving Goffman publishes Stanley Milgrams
out the autokinetic conformity experiments The Presentation of Self in Behavioral Study of
effect experiments, suggest that people will Everyday Life, which Obedience illustrates
demonstrating the override their own claims that social that people will ignore
tendency for groups judgement in order interaction is a their own moral values
to conform. to conform. performance. to obey authority.

s psychology became inuenced by the psychology of individual and his environment,
established as a scientic their individual members. Social as well as the nature of that
discipline, its scope was psychologists, as they were called, environment. In his studies of small
at rst limited to the examination also studied the relationships groups, he laid the foundations for
of the mind and its workings, before between individuals within these later examinations of group
broadening to include the study of groups and between different dynamics and how groups and
behavior. For much of the rst half groups. This introduced a new their members bring about change.
of the 20th century, this meant set of topics to psychology, Behaviorism fell out of favor
the emphasis was very much on including group dynamics, after World War II, and Lewins
a study of the mind and behavior of attitudes, and prejudice, as well ideas about the effect of the
individuals and their responses to as social conict, conformity, social environment provided an
their environment, though it obedience, and social change. alternative that was enthusiastically
became increasing clear to taken up by the next generation.
some psychologists that the Social environment The concept of attributionthe
environment includes other people. Among the rst to make a way we see and interpret the
The eld of social psychology systematic study of the psychology behavior of othersbecame an
emerged in the 1930s, when of social groups was German area of specic research, and from
psychologists began to explore the American Kurt Lewin, considered that came theories of conformity
interactions of individuals within the father of social psychology. and cultural norms such as
groups and society as a whole. Lewin took a fresh look at the those of Solomon Asch. Erving
They examined the effect of social dominant behaviorist approach, Goffmans best-known theory
organizations on the individual, and examining how behavior results that we act out certain behaviors to
the way that social structures are from the interaction between the suit the impression we want to give

Elliot Aronson develops

the jigsaw classroom Melvin Lerner suggests
William Glasser technique to reduce Janet Taylor Spence and his just world theory,
publishes Reality ethnic rivalry and Robert Helmreich which claims that many
Therapy, which forms encourage cooperation in devise the Attitudes of us tend to believe
the basis of his later newly desegregated toward Women that people get what
Choice Theory. classrooms. Scale (AWS). they deserve.

1965 1971 1972 1978

1968 1971 1977 1994

Robert Zajonc conducts Philip Zimbardo runs the Roger Brown and James Ignacio Martn-Bar
experiments on the Stanford Prison Kulik publish Flashbulb calls for Liberation
mere exposure effect. Experiment. Memories, about our Psychology, for poor
special biological and war-torn countries.
memory mechanism.

to othersalso came out of this processes such as memory and The 1960s saw the rise of the civil
new emphasis on the importance emotion were highlighted by Roger rights movement and feminism,
of social interaction. Brown and Robert Zajonc, and both of which challenged the status
Research in the 1960s shed light these ndings were exploited quo. Issues surrounding prejudice,
on the darker aspects of behavior; widely by the mass media and cultural norms, and beliefs came
Melvin Lerner showed how victims advertising, which began to play to the fore, and the work of social
are sometimes blamed for what an increasingly important role in psychologists such as Janet Taylor
happens to them, and Elliot Aronson modern society. Mass media and Spence did much to alter attitudes
explained that apparently aberrant advertising in turn had a growing toward women, while others
behavior could be the result of effect on social structures, used Lewins process of social
circumstances rather than insanity. prompting theories of social transformation to bring
More controversially, especially at a constructivism by psychologists about organizational changes.
time when the atrocities of World such as Serge Moscovici. Theories and models pioneered
War II were still fresh in peoples As a result, social psychology by social psychologists are now
minds, experiments by Stanley has rapidly become more used by business, industry, and
Milgram and Philip Zimbardo applicable to many different all kinds of social organizations,
showed just how far the need to obey situations. It has inuenced other and more recently have been
and conform affects our behavior. areas of psychologyin particular adopted as a means of achieving
psychotherapy, through William social and political reform in
Applying psychology Glassers reality therapy. It has societies suffering from
The advent of cognitive psychology also impacted on other disciplines, oppression, most notably in
brought a new inuence on social including sociology, anthropology, the Liberation Psychology
psychology. The effects of cognitive and even politics and economics. espoused by Ignacio Martn-Bar.

KURT LEWIN (18901947)

he behaviorists believed
IN CONTEXT that behavior is dictated by
the environment alone, but
in the 1920s Kurt Lewin made the
Field theory
claim that behavior is a result of
BEFORE both the individual and the A person who has learned
Early 1900s Sigmund Freud environment. His revolutionary
to see how much his own
and other psychotherapists ideas developed and evolved into
the study of group dynamics that is
fate depends upon the fate
argue that human behavior of his entire group will be
is a result of past experience. invaluable to organizations today.
In his investigation of human eager to take over a fair share
1910s Wolfgang Khler, behavior, Lewin developed eld of responsibility for its welfare.
among other Gestalt theory, which explores the forces Kurt Lewin
psychologists, argues that and factors that inuence any given
people must be understood situation. Lewins eld refers to
holistically, according to all the psychological environment of
of their elements and their the individual or the collective
interactions with the group at a particular point in time,
surrounding environment. and he identied two opposing
forces present in any given eld: successfully, a person or organization
AFTER helpful forces, which drive people leader must take into account the
1958 In The Dynamics of toward achieving their goals, and various inuences at play both
Planned Change, Ronald hindering forces, which inhibit within the minds of individuals
Lippitt, Jeanne Watson, and movement toward these goals. and within their environment.
Bruce Westley create a seven- In explaining his change model,
step change theory that Lewins change model Lewin emphasizes that the entire
focuses on the role of the Field theory provided the basis for situation, including all the relevant
change agent rather than on Lewins model of change, which personal and environmental details,
the evolution of change itself. offers an invaluable guide for must be taken into account, as
successful transformation, both focusing on isolated facts can lead
for individuals and organizations. to a skewed perception of the
The model shows that in order circumstances. Not only must you
to carry out the process of change have a thorough and holistic

In order for a change of behavior As a change occurs, more

to take place, details about both the key qualities and values
individual and the environment of a system are revealed.
must be taken into account.

You cannot understand Therefore the change process

a system until you try itself offers important information
to change it. about a system.
See also: Sigmund Freud 9299 Wolfgang Khler 16061 Leon Festinger 16667 Max Wertheimer 335

Elton Mayo 335

Successful organizational change

is engendered by making a unique
diagnosis of the people and situational
forces involved, and understanding
the interplay between them.

understanding of a situation in
order to change it, but that
understanding actually deepens
throughout the change process, and
therefore you cannot understand a
system until you try to change it.
Lewins model describes a three-
step process for achieving personal
or organizational transformation.
The rst stagewhich he called
unfreezinginvolves recognizing
that change is necessary, and
dismantling old beliefs and
practices. Change occurs in the unlearning, difcult relearning, zone and undergo the challenge
second stage, and is often and the restructuring of thoughts, of learning new skills or accepting
accompanied by confusion and feelings, attitudes, and perceptions. a new set of beliefs. This natural
distress as the old mindset or resistance can be overcome if the
system breaks down. The third and Unfreezing beliefs individual is helped to accept that
nal stage, freezing, occurs when The unfreezing stage is perhaps the change is necessary, valid,
a new mindset is crystallized and the most complex stage of the and will lead to the best outcome,
there is an accompanying sense of process, as people are naturally and if support is given to engender
comfort and stability within the inclined to resist changes to their a feeling of psychological safety.
new framework. The process is established mindsets and routines. Lewin demonstrated the
difcult because it involves painful It requires careful preparation; positive effect of creating an
many change efforts within environment of psychological
organizations fail simply because safety during the unfreezing stage
employees are not adequately (and of allowing active participation
prepared, making them more in the change process) in his
resistant to change and less likely efforts to convince American
to function effectively under the housewives to serve animal organs
We all need each new system. Preparation might as food at home during World
other. This type of include creating an exciting vision War II. Historically, offal had only
interdependence is the for change that employees can been eaten by low-income families,
greatest challenge to rally around, communicating it but the American government
the maturity of individual effectively, developing a sense of wanted to ensure that nutritious
and group functioning. urgency and necessity for change, food was not going to waste during
Kurt Lewin providing employees with support, a time of food shortages, especially
and allowing them to participate as kidneys, livers, and hearts
actively in the process. are all high-protein foods. The US
On an individual level, people Department of Agriculture called
may react to this stage defensively, upon Lewin to help convince
not wanting to leave their comfort housewives to include these
in the discussion group he had belief has been proven wrong or
created an environment in which ineffective, we are naturally
women felt psychologically safe inclined to replace the old value
enough to express their concerns system with a new one, lling the
and opinions. Through exploring uncomfortable void left by the
their beliefs as well as the realities of unfreezing process. We do this in a
Learning is more effective the food shortages, he helped them combination of ways: relying on our
when it is an active rather change their opinions about which instinctive feelings, studying role
than a passive process. meats were edible and guided them models, and looking more generally
Kurt Lewin toward a new belief: that offal is to the vast array of information
acceptable to buy and serve at home. available. We hope in this way to
expose ourselves to a new piece
Making the change of information that will solve the
During Lewins second stagethe problem. Once this insight is
actual change processpeople are achieved, we have accepted and
confronted with the daunting and established a new mindset.
meats in their family meals. During confusing task of implementing a In the case of the American
interviews with housewives, Lewin new system. They must give up housewives during World War II,
realized that there were both helpful familiar routines and practices and Lewin provided the women with
and hindering forces at play. The master new skills (which itself can new information by educating them
helpful forces, or incentives, toward arouse feelings of uncertainty or a about the good taste and nutritional
changing the housewives view of fear of failure). In an organization, value of offal (thereby replacing their
organ meat was its high nutritional the new system will be dened by old belief that it was an inferior
value. The hindering forces, or the leadership, and often relates to meat), and convincing them that
barriers, to change centered around technology, structure, procedures, given the reality of wartime food
the womens view that the meat or culture. It is important at this shortages, there was absolutely no
was inappropriate for them and stage to provide sufcient support shame in serving it to their families
their families, and to a lesser degree, for employees and ensure the (thereby replacing their pre-wartime
that it would not taste good. elimination of obstacles. belief that they would be viewed as
Lewin set up a study using two At the level of personal change, social inferiors for eating it).
groups of housewives to explore the people cannot be given a new belief
best ways of initiating change. The system, but must nd and accept The freezing stage
rst group was told repeatedly that one for themselves. When an old After change has been implemented
eating offal was benecial for them, within an organization, it must
while the other group took part in a become part of the companys
small group discussion focusing on culture (or frozen) in order for it to
how the food shortage problem be successful in the long term. The
could be eased if women like new thought processes, practices,
themselves could be convinced to and behaviors adopted during the
take part in a program of using transition must become routine.
secondary cuts of meat such as Management can help to ensure
livers, kidneys, and hearts. When changes become more rmly
around one-third of the women who established by publicizing the ways
had participated in the discussion in which change has beneted the
group later served offal for dinner, company, and by nurturing positive
Lewin concluded that increasing
the level of peoples involvement
Learning to use new technologies
also increases the likelihood of in place of old ones is made easier by
changing their attitudes and an increase in driving forcessuch as
behaviors. Lecturing to the rst the ability to contact friends and family
group had proved ineffective, but worldwide, instantly and inexpensively.
During World War II, housewives chicken or steak, or if other women
were encouraged to change many of are criticizing her choice of meat,
their beliefs, from the types of food she may decide to abandon offal
and clothing that were acceptable
to their capability to do mens jobs.
and look for other ways to feed her
family, starting the unfreezing and
change processes all over again.
ensure compliance to the new Lewins pioneering experimental
priorities) by offering them a $65 work into social systems has led
bonus if the US Department of him to be widely recognized as the
Transportation rated the company founder of social psychology. He
among the top ve airlines. The use was the rst psychologist to study
of Lewins change model marked group dynamics and organizational
Continentals evolution from being development in a methodical way.
the poorest-performing airline to He applied rigorous social science
being named Airline of the Year. to effect useful social transformation,
At the individual level, the and his work has been inuential
freezing stage marks a time when across the elds of experimental
new beliefs and practices are tested and social psychology.
through trial and error; this either
feelings toward the change among reinforces the changes or starts a
employees, perhaps by delivering new change cycle. For example,
rewards for implementing the new after a week of serving offal to her
skills or processes. For example, family, a wartime housewife might
in the 1990s, Continental Airlines assess whether her family seems to
was forced to le for bankruptcy. enjoy the meat, whether they seem There is nothing
In order to stay in business, the healthy, and whether other families so practical as
management implemented a major seem to be judging her positively or a good theory.
change: they shifted the company negatively based on her meal choices. Kurt Lewin
focus from saving costs to putting If the answers to these questions
out a quality product that met high are positive, she will continue to
customer standards. They decided serve offal at dinnertime. If, however,
to reward employees for adopting her children do not appear to be as
the new policies and practices (to healthy as they were when eating

Kurt Lewin German-American psychologist resign and seek refuge in the

Kurt Lewin was born in 1890 into US. He began working at Cornell
a middle-class Jewish family in University, then moved to the
Mogilno, Poland (then Prussia). In University of Iowa where he
1905, his family moved to Berlin, became a professor. In 1944, he
where he studied medicine at became director of the Center
the University of Freiburg before for Group Dynamics at the
transferring to the University of Massachusetts Institute of
Munich to study biology. During Technology, but died of a heart
World War I, he served in the attack just three years later.
German army, but returned to
Berlin to complete his PhD after Key works
being injured. He worked at the
Psychological Institute, Berlin, 1935 A Dynamic Theory of
from 1921 to 1933, when Personality
restrictions on the Jewish 1948 Resolving Social Conicts
population compelled him to 1951 Field Theory in Social


1880s Hippolyte Bernheim,
a French physician, uses
hypnosis to demonstrate the

concept of suggestibility.
1935 Muzafer Sherifs
conformism experiment

leads Asch to develop the
Asch Paradigm.
1963 Stanley Milgrams

obedience experiments show
that people conform for an
authority gure despite
experiencing a moral conict.
SOLOMON ASCH (19071996) 1976 Serge Moscovici argues
that a consistent minority can
be inuential.
1979 Knud S. Larsen, a
Danish psychologist, shows
that conformity may be tied
to cultural climate.

ocial psychologist Solomon
Asch challenged our idea of
ourselves as autonomous
beings when he devised an
experiment to demonstrate our urge
to conform. His famous experiment
showed that when people are
confronted with a majority opinion,
the tendency to conform may be
stronger than their commitment to
what they perceive to be true. He
detailed his ndings in his 1955
paper Opinions and Social Pressure,
which also discusses the social
inuences that shape a persons
beliefs, judgments, and practices.
Asch wanted to investigate the
effects of group pressure on
individual decision-making, and
See also: Serge Moscovici 23839 Stanley Milgram 24653
Philip Zimbardo 25455 Max Wertheimer 335 Muzafer Sherif 337

A group exerts profound A certain amount of

social effects on its conformity serves
members. important social functions.

People feel compelled to

conform in order to t in. Solomon Asch
Solomon Elliott Asch was a
pioneer in the eld of social
psychology. He was born into
a Jewish family in Warsaw
They will pretend or even (then part of the Russian
convince themselves that they agree Empire) in 1907. At the age
with the majority. of 13 he emigrated to the US
and studied psychology. He
received a PhD in 1932 from
Columbia University, where
he was inuenced by Max
Their tendency to conform Asch became a professor
can be stronger than their values at Swarthmore College in
or basic perceptions. 1947, and worked closely with
Wolfgang Khler. He held
visiting posts at Massachussets
Institute of Technology (MIT)
and Harvard, where he
how and to what extent peoples demonstrated the principles of
supervised Stanley Milgrams
attitudes were inuenced by social conformity, Asch contended Ph.D., before moving to the
forces around them. thatbecause there was no right University of Pennsylvania.
Turkish psychologist Muzafer or wrong answer to the taskno His many awards include the
Sherif set out to answer similar denitive conclusions could be Distinguished Scientic
questions in 1935, using a visual drawn. Conformity, he believed, Contribution Award from the
illusion called the autokinetic effect, could only be measured in terms American Psychological
whereby a stationary spot of light of an individuals tendency to Association. He died aged 88.
seen in a dark room appears to agree with group members who
move. He told the subjects of his unanimously give the wrong answer Key works
study that he was going to move the on a task that has an unambiguous
light and asked them how far they solution. The simple perceptual task 1951 Effects of Group Pressure
thought it had shifted. Tested in that became known as the Asch Upon the Modication and
groups, the participants estimates Paradigm was designed to offer this. Distortion of Judgment
1952 Social Psychology
converged into a group norm,
1955 Opinions and Social
revealing that they used others The Asch Paradigm Pressure
estimates as a frame of reference in The experiment was conducted 1956 Studies of Independence
an ambiguous situation. Although with 123 male subjects, each of and Conformity
Sherif believed that he had whom was put individually into a
group of ve to seven confederates Initially, Asch thought that only a
(people who were aware of the real few of the subjects would comply
aims of the experiment but were with the confederates answers.
introduced as fellow participants). After all, the task was simple and
The group was shown one card the answers obvious; during the
with a line on it, followed by pilot study in which there was no
another card with three lines pressure to yield to an erroneous
All the yielding subjects
labeled A, B, and C, and asked group, only three errors were made
underestimated the frequency
which one of those three lines out of 720 total trials. The results with which they conformed.
was the same length as the line of the actual study were surprising. Solomon Asch
on the rst card. When surrounded by a group of
The room was always organized people all giving the same
so that the subject would give incorrect answer, subjects gave
either the last or the penultimate incorrect answers on almost a
answer. Over the course of 18 third (32 percent) of the questions;
trials, confederates were instructed 75 percent of them provided an
to provide the correct answers incorrect response for at least one conformed on all critical trials,
for the rst six, but then to give question. One person complied and 13 of the 50 participants
identical but incorrect answers with the group giving a wrong (26 percent) never conformed.
for another 12. This was to test answer on 11 out of 12 trials. The results proved that the
whether or not the subject would Because the task was both simple subjects themselves were highly
answer correctly or whether he and unambiguous, these gures consistent. Those who broke
would match his response to that indicate a high degree of away from the group opinion and
of the confederates when all gave conformity by the subjects. provided an independent answer
the sameincorrectanswer. However, not a single participant did not succumb to the majority
even over many trials, while
In the Asch Paradigm experiment, participants were those who chose to comply with
given a visual test. They had to decide which of the three the majority seemed unable to
lines on the second card was the same length as the one on break this pattern.
the rst card. Each question was called a trial and there
were 18 trials in all. Explanations
To get a deeper understanding
of his results, Asch interviewed
his subjects to nd out why they
offered incorrect answers. Some
said they wanted to go along
with what they believed to be
the experimenters wishes and
avoid upsetting the overall
experiment. A few actually
wondered if they were perhaps
suffering from eye strain or were
seated at a misleading angle.
Some denied that they were
aware of having given incorrect
answers. Eventually, some
admitted to knowing their
answers were incorrect, adding
that they did not want to stand
out or appear different and foolish:
A B C they wanted to t in.
Asch also spoke to the subjects Asch discovered that if he allowed
who had maintained correct and the participants to give their
independent responses, and found answers privately, by writing
that they had not been unresponsive them down on a piece of paper,
to the majority, but had been able conformity noticeably decreased,
to recover from the doubt that they and this held true even if the
A member of a
felt in order to give an honest confederates were still giving
account of what they saw. their answers aloud.
tribe of cannibals accepts
Asch performed variations on
cannibalism as altogether
the experiment to test what Cultural norms tting and proper.
difference the size of the majority Some psychologists hypothesized Solomon Asch
group made to levels of conformity. that Aschs ndings reected the
He found that just one confederate cultural climate of 1950s Americ