The Story of Psychology

Morton Hunt

Morton Hunt has been a freelance writer specializing in the behavioral sciences since 1949. His articles have appeared in many national magazines, including
The New Yorker
The New York Times
, and have won him numerous prizes including the Westinghouse A.A.A.S. Award for best science article of the year. He has written twenty-one books, the best known of which are
The World of the Formerly Married
(about the lives and psychology of separated and divorced people),
The Universe Within
(cognitive science), and the earlier edition of this present book. He lives in Gladwyn, Pennsylvania, with his wife, writer and psychotherapist Bernice Hunt.

A L S O    B Y     M O R T O N     H U N T

The Natural History of Love

Her Infinite Variety:
The American Woman as Lover, Mate and Rival

Mental Hospital

The Talking Cure
(with Rena Corman and Louis R. Ormont)

The Thinking Animal

The World of the Formerly Married

The Affair: A Portrait of Extra-Marital Love
in Contemporary America

The Mugging

Sexual Behavior in the 1970s

Prime Time: A Guide to the Pleasures and Opportunities
of the New Middle Age
(with Bernice Hunt)

The Divorce Experience
(with Bernice Hunt)

The Universe Within:
A New Science Explores the Human Mind

Profiles of Social Research:
The Scientific Study of Human Interactions

The Compassionate Beast: What Science Is Discovering
About the Humane Side of Humankind

How Science Takes Stock: The Story of Meta-Analysis

The New Know-Nothings: The Political Foes of the
Scientific Study of Human Nature

To Bernice,
for reasons beyond counting


I here put into thy hands what has been the diversion of some of my idle and heavy hours; if it has the good luck to prove so of any of thine, and thou hast but half so much pleasure in reading as I had in writing it, thou wilt as little think thy money, as I do my pains, ill bestowed.

, “The Epistle to the Reader,”
An Essay Concerning Human Understanding


Prologue: Exploring the Universe Within

A Psychological Experiment in the Seventh Century

Messages from the Gods

The Discovery of the Mind


The Conjecturers

The Glory That Was Greece

The Forerunners: Alcmaeon, Protagoras, Democritus, Hippocrates

The “Midwife of Thought”: Socrates

The Idealist: Plato

The Realist: Aristotle

The Scholars

The Long Sleep

The Commentators: Theophrastus, the Hellenists, the Epicureans, the Skeptics, the Stoics

Roman Borrowers: Lucretius, Seneca, Epictetus, Galen, Plotinus

The Patrist Adapters: the Patrists, Tertullian, Saint Augustine

The Patrist Reconcilers: the Schoolmen, Saint Thomas Aquinas

The Darkness Before Dawn

The Protopsychologists

The Third Visitation

The Rationalists: Descartes, the Cartesians, Spinoza

The Empiricists: Hobbes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, the Empiricist-Associationist School

German Nativism: Leibniz, Kant


The Physicalists

The Magician-Healer: Mesmer

The Skull Reader: Gall

The Mechanists

Specific Nerve Energy: Müller

Just Noticeable Differences: Weber

Neural Physiology: von Helmholtz

Psychophysics: Fechner

First Among Equals: Wundt

As Good a Birth Date as Any

The Making of the First Psychologist

The Curious Goings-on at Konvikt

Wundtian Psychology

Sic Transit

The Psychologist
Malgré Lui:
William James

“This Is No Science”

Adorable Genius

Founding Father

Ideas of the Pre-eminent Psychologizer

Jamesian Paradoxes

Explorer of the Depths: Sigmund Freud

The Truth About Freud

The Would-Be Neuroscientist

The Hypnotherapist

The Invention of Psychoanalysis

Dynamic Psychology: Early Formulations


Dynamic Psychology: Extensions and Revisions

But Is It Scientific?

Decline and Fall—and Revival

The Measurers

“Whenever You Can, Count”: Francis Galton

Galtonian Paradoxes

The Mental Age Approach: Alfred Binet

The Testing Mania

The IQ Controversy

The Behaviorists

A New Answer to Old Questions

Two Discoverers of the Laws of Behaviorism: Thorndike and Pavlov

Mr. Behaviorism: John B. Watson

The Triumph of Behaviorism

Two Great Neobehaviorists: Hull and Skinner

The Impending Paradigm Shift

The Gestaltists

A Visual Illusion Gives Rise to a New Psychology

The Rediscovery of the Mind

The Laws of Gestalten

Out-of-Reach Bananas and Other Problems


Failure and Success


Introduction: The Fissioning of Psychology— and the Fusion of the Psychological Sciences

The Personality Psychologists

“The Secrets of the Hearts of Other Men”

The Fundamental Units of Personality

Measuring Personality

Making Order out of Chaos

Learned Personality

Body, Genes, and Personality

Late Word from the Personality Front

The Developmentalists

“Great Oaks from Little Acorns Grow”

Grand Theory and Nontheory

A Giant, and a Giant Theory

Cognitive Development


Personality Development

Social Development

Development from A to Z

The Social Psychologists

No Man’s Land

A Case of Multiple Fatherhood

Closed Cases: Cognitive Dissonance, the Psychology of Imprisonment, Obedience, the Bystander Effect

Ongoing Inquiries: Conflict Resolution, Attribution, Others

The Value of Social Psychology

The Perception Psychologists

Interesting Questions

Styles of Looking at Looking

Seeing Form

Seeing Movement

Seeing Depth

Two Ways of Looking at Vision

The Emotion and Motivation Psychologists

Fundamental Question

Somatic Theory

ANS and CNS Theory

Cognitive Theory

Patchwork Quilt

The Cognitivists


Revolution No. 2




Is the Mind a Computer? Is a Computer a Mind?

New Model

And the Winner Is—

The Psychotherapists

Growth Industry

Freud’s Offspring: The Dynamic Psychotherapists

The Patient as Laboratory Animal: Behavior Therapy

All in the Mind: Cognitive Therapy

A Miscellany of Therapies

But Does It Really Work?

Users and Misusers of Psychology

Knowledge Is Power

Improving the Human Use of the Human Equipment

Improving the Fit Between Humans and Their Jobs

The Use and Misuse of Testing

Covert Persuasion: Advertising and Propaganda

Psychology in the Courtroom

Beyond the Fringe

Psychology Today

Portrait of a Psychologist

Portrait of a Science


Psychology and Politics

Status Report





Other books

My Hope Next Door by Tammy L. Gray
Better by Atul Gawande
An Unexpected Grace by Kristin von Kreisler
So Much to Learn by Jessie L. Star
The Gypsy Witch by Roberta Kagan
Two For The Lions by Lindsey Davis Copyright 2016 - 2021