By John Greenwood
A Conceptual historical past of Psychology is a extensive historic survey that lines conceptual continuities and discontinuities within the heritage of mental idea. the writer connects the background of mental idea with the improvement of the historical past of technological know-how, from the proto-scientific psychology of the seventeenth and 18th centuries to the institutionalized medical psychology of the past due nineteenth century to the current day. The lucid writing variety and transparent association replicate the author's fifteen years' event instructing the direction.
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Extra info for A Conceptual History of Psychology
The practice of phrenology in the early 19th century was frequently pseudoscientific. indd conjunction with other theoretical desiderata such as simplicity, fertility, and the like. 9 12/24/07 5:28:16 PM 10 CHAPTER 1: HISTORY, SCIENCE, AND PSYCHOLOGY Skull with phrenological markings. psychological faculties are manifested as protrusions or indentations of the skull, caused by the over- or underdevelopment of the region of the brain associated with the faculty. Phrenologists were quick to seize on evidence that supported their theoretical localization of psychological faculties to regions of the brain, but explained away negative evidence in a variety of ad hoc ways.
The ancient Greeks originally used the term physiology to reference the study of nature in general; the medical restriction of the term to theories of nature employed to explain the functions of the human body was for centuries tied to the theory of the “four humors” (Hatfield, 1992). However, we can recognize anticipations of our conception of science in the early naturalistic and mathematical speculations of the ancient Greeks, in the increasing emphasis on the empirical evaluation of theories from the 16th century onward, and in the development of scientific societies in the 17th century.
Although some natural scientists and psychologists do seem to have developed their theories in this fashion, as in the case of Galileo and Piaget, later methodologists came to hold that such a method is not necessary and maintained that many successful theories are based upon hunches, lucky guesses, or prior speculation. For example, Otto Loewi (1873–1961) had a peculiar dream. He imagined a tank of water in which two frog hearts were suspended. indd 20 12/24/07 5:28:23 PM SCIENCE AND PSYCHOLOGY 21 stimulated the vagus nerve of one heart, causing it to beat, and lo and behold, the second also began to beat!