History of Modern Psychology, A

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9780135012710: History of Modern Psychology, A

This history of modern scientific psychology ranges from the publication of Fechner's "Elements of Psychophysics" in the mid-19th century to the present. It focuses on current academic concerns, but also addresses material prior to the founding of psychology as a science. The author explores the implications of the new approach to cognitive science called connectionism, a radical approach to theorizing about cognition. He synthesizes the rapidly growing area of the history of psychology with general history, drawing upon major thinkers from various disciplines.

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From the Inside Flap:

PREFACE

There has not been an edition of A History of Modern Psychology since 1994, while there have been two new editions of A History of Psychology in the same period. I have incorporated into this third edition all the relevant changes from A History of Psychology, without reducing this book's expanded coverage of contemporary psychology.

The most obvious new features of this edition are structural. I have included a new Chapter Two that summarizes the history of psychology from the Renaissance and Scientific Revolution up to the middle of the nineteenth century. In writing these chapters, I have drawn not only from A History of Psychology but from a paper, "Mind as scientific object: An historical-philosophical exploration," written for Mind as Scientific Object (D. Johnson & C. Erneling (Eds.), Oxford University Press, in press), and two articles, "The Renaissance through the Eighteenth Century," and "The Nineteenth Century through Freud," for the APA Encyclopedia of Psychology (Oxford University Press, 2000).

Chapters 3 to 7 on the founding of psychology and the conspiracy of naturalism have been updated, the most notable change being to Chapter 4, The Psychology of the Unconscious, which is now organized temporally rather than topically. The treatment of psychology in the twentieth century has been both updated and re-organized to provide a clearer focus on each of the two strands of modern psychology: scientific psychology and professional psychology. Chapters 8 to 10 tell the story of the scientific study of the mind in the twentieth century up to about 2000. Chapters 11 to 13 tell the story of professional psychology in the same years. This structural change reflects two concerns of mine. First, in my own teaching I have found that shuttling back and forth between very different narrative strands that happen to occur in the same time period confuses students. I think the pictures of both scientific and professional psychology become clearer by telling each story separately. Secondly, as a number of observers have pointed out, scientific and professional psychology are increasingly going their separate ways despite occasional protests, and my separation of the two narratives reflects what I believe is historical reality. Finally, separating the material should make it easier for teachers to emphasize one or the other topic.

As always, I would be happy to hear any comments from professors or students about A History of Modern Psychology, Third Edition. Please email me at tleahey@saturn.vcu.

THOMAS HARDY LEAHEY
Richmond, Virginia

From the Back Cover:

This book is a history of modern psychology, beginning with the publication of Fechner's elements of Psychophysics in the mid-19th century to the present. It approaches the history of psychology from a scientific perspective. Chapter topics include: the psychology of consciousness, the unconscious mind, and adaptation; the conspiracy of naturalism; the golden age and decline of behaviorism; the rise of cognitive science; the birth of applied psychology; the rise of professional psychology; and the psychological society. For individuals interested in the history of psychology—and what it is today.

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Leahey, Thomas Hardy
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