Control : a history of behavioral psychology by John A. Mills

By John A. Mills

Behaviorism used to be the dominant strength within the production of recent American psychology, and it maintains to undergird the sector to today. then again, a whole figuring out of the complexity of behaviorism has remained elusive. Its dominance inside of American psychology has, sarcastically, blocked our efforts to appreciate its function and its nature. regulate serves as an antidote to this historic myopia, delivering the most Read more...

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Louis in 1904, is the same as the first overt behav­ iorist statement in American philosophy: I can only say that psychology is what the psychologist is interested in qua psychologist. . I am not convinced that psychology should be limited to the study of consciousness as such . . I admire . . the ever-increasing acute­ ness of introspective analysis . . but the positive scientific results are small in quantity when compared with the objective experimental work accom­ plished in the past fifty years.

Finally, the Chicago school’s characteristic work had its origins in the work of an early faculty member, Charles Richmond Henderson, who was more of a social worker than a sociologist and had close working contacts with vari­ ous community agencies. After Henderson’s resignation Burgess took over his courses. With respect to both substance and form there are striking conti­ nuities between Progressivism and sociology. From the beginning, em­ pirical work in sociology was supported by foundations such as the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Memorial.

Spence (1907–1967) will demonstrate that beneath the published writings lay an unarticulated biomechanistic theory. That theory, in turn, has to be set in the context of an even less articulate set of views about human nature and the nature of society. Hull’s views about the nature of scientific theorizing led him to a particularly stark version of instrumentalism, derived at several removes from his forerunners among American social theo­ rists. His lifework is best interpreted as a prolonged metaphor for his beliefs about the workings of society.

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