John B. Watson : LUSENET : History & Theory of Psychology : One Thread

What were the major influences on Watson in writing his "Behaviorist Manifesto"? What were his philosophical implications?

-- Marlin Newburn (, September 25, 2002


One interesting answer on the influences is provided by Paul G. Creelan in Watsonian Behaviorism and the Calvinist Conscience in the Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences, 1974, 10(1), 95- 118.

An entirely different analysis of the forces behind behaviorism is provided in Samelson, F. (1988). Struggle for scientific authority: The reception of Watson’s behaviorism, 1913–1920. In L. D. Benjamin, Jr. (Ed.), A history of psychology: Original sources and contemporary research (pp. 407–424). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Another fascinating analysis of behaviorism in general is provided in A. A. Roback's A History of American Psychology (1952), which comes complete with a fold-out chart analyzing various dimensions of behaviorism. And some of his bias may be clear in labeling one of the chapters on behaviorism "Psychology out of its mind."

Yet another fine analysis of different philosophical brands of behaviorism is Kenneth Hillner's (1984) History & Systems of Modern Psychology (Gardner Press), which is one of my favorites for teasing out the philosophical underpinnings of various forms of behaviorism, with separate chapters on Watson and Skinner.

-- Hendrika Vande Kemp (, September 27, 2002.

Hi Marlin, look into a biologist by the name of Leob or Loeb. He was at the University of Chicago at the turn of the century. Look this guy up in the encyclopiea. Best, Daivd

-- (, September 29, 2002.

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