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1989 - Volume 10, Number 2, Spring

Predicational Versus Mediational Modeling and the Directedness of Cognition in Impression Formation
Albert M. Bugaj, University of Wisconsin Center, Richland Center and Joseph F. Rychlak, Loyola University of Chicago
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 135-152, ISSN 0271-0137
A distinction is drawn between a predicational and a mediational model in accounting for human cognition. Predication is a process moving from a wider to a narrower context of meaning. The wider context of meaning is intrinsically oppositional. Mediation involves taking in or inputting factors which are not initially a part of the process but which come to play a directing role in that process. It is the frequency and contiguity of such inputs that direct the mediational process. Two experiments on college students are presented in which the frequency/contiguity factor is removed from consideration in an impression formation task. The aim here is to confront the mediational theorizing of network theory with the predicational theorizing of logical learning theory. It is predicted that the direction of impression formation can be stipulated based upon oppositionality even though frequency and contiguity are removed from consideration. This prediction is cross-validated in both a between-subjects (p < .001) and a within-subjects design (p < .05). A discussion follows concerning the fact that untested assumptions are made by cognitive theorists regarding the nature of association.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Joseph F. Rychlak, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, Loyola University of Chicargo, 6525 N. Sheridan Road, Chicago, Illinois 60626.

The Inclusion in Modern Physical Theory of a Link Between Cognitive-Interpretive Activity and the Structure and Course of the Physical World
Douglas M. Snyder, Berkeley, California
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 153-172, ISSN 0271-0137
A brief review of theory and measurement in Newtonian, relativistic, and quantum physics indicates that there is a role for psychology in physicists’ exploration of the world. This review also provides the basic reasons why psychology has traditionally been considered to be of little significance to physics. It is shown that the structure of the physical world in the theories of special and general relativity is dependent on the cognitive-interpretive activites of its observers and the physicists who study it. Central to the argument is the significance of the reference frame, and its associated temporal coordinate system, in special relativity and the dependence of spacetime curvature in general relativity on special relativistic considerations. Further, the general equivalence of inertial and non-inertial reference frames that is at the heart of the general principle of relativity is shown to indicate that the existence of an inertial reference frame in a gravitational field, and the mass associated with this field, is arbitrary and dependent on the perspective of the observer. It is also shown that in quantum mechanics, the course of the physical world can be linked to a person’s observational activites and that these activites are tied to the observer’s knowledge of the physical world. The precise and reproducible empirical evidence supporting the theories of special and general relativity and quantum mechanics constitutes evidence for a significant link between the cognitive-interpretive activities of observers and physicists and the structure and course of the physical world.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Douglas M. Snyder, Ph.D., P.O. Box 228, Berkeley, California 94701.

Notes on the Action of the Pseudostatement
Lauren Lawrence, The New School for Social Research
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 173-178, ISSN 0271-0137
This paper deals with the defining, the utilization and the mechanisms of a new concept, the pseudostatement, so-called due to the falsity of the dialectic it employs. It is verbal construct which undermines meaning, and thus replaces inhibitive thoughts with permissible ones. Through the exemplification of a specific communication where a pseudostatement is used, this analysis reveals underlying motives with the intent to prove the pseudostatement an overlooked idiom in the language of the unconscious. Viewed as a psychic operation which constitutes a verbal reparation, recognition of the pseudostatement could lead to more subtle insights into the psyche and be helpful in the office of the therapist where language is considered an aspect of inner presentation particular to the subject.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Lauren Lawrence, 31 East 72nd Street, New York, New York 10021

Connectionism and The Dreaming Mind
Gordon G. Globus, University of California, Irvine
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 179-196, ISSN 0271-0137
A connectionist theory of the dreaming mind is developed and contrasted with the dream theories of Crick and Mitchison (1983) and Freud (1900/1953). Connectionist networks dynamics are constrained by input, tuning signals and connection strengths (by environment, intentionality and knowledge respectively). When “perturbed” by input, and given the constraints, such networks self-organize towards self-consistency under the harmony principle (Smolensky, 1986). During the random perturbation of REM sleep the most salient intentional acts from the wake life become reoperative and constrain the networks which self-organize to maximize harmony. The result of this movement toward self-consistency is the dream. Due to the increased noise and decreased inhibition during REM sleep, the networks tend toward abrupt state change, less than optimal harmony, and formation of parasitic attractors, which explain the peculiar dream characteristics of abrupt thematic change, displacement and condensation.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Gordon G. Globus, M.D., Capistrano by the Sea Hospital, P.O. Box 398, Dana Point, California 92629.

Causal Isomorphism and Complementarity: Setting the Record Straight
Irving Kirsch, University of Connecticut and Michael Hyland, Plymouth Polytechnic
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 197-204, ISSN 0271-0137
Snyder (1989) has misrepresented the central characteristic of Bohr’s complimentarity thesis and has similarly misrepresented our ideas of methodological complementarity and causal isomorphism. Bohr’s thesis was based on the idea that mutually exclusive descriptions could be applied to “one and the same object.” Methodological complementarity is an extension of this idea to mentalistic and physiological constructs in psychology. According to the principle of methodological complementarity, mentalistic and physiological constructs are mutually exclusive descriptions of the same underlying event. Snyder is wrong in claiming that causal isomorphism is nothing more than the distinction between type identity and token identity. Causal isomorphism is the assumption that for every instance of a causal relation between two mental events, there is a corresponding causal relation between two physiological events. Causal isomorphism has been logically deduced from Hyland’s (1985) principle of methodological complementarity, not from Bohr’s theory of complementarity in physics.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Kirsch, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, U-20, Room 107, University of Connecticut, 406 Cross Campus Road, Storrs, Connecticut 06268.

Book Reviews

A Memoir. Seeking the Shape of Personality
Book Author: Robert W. White. Marlborough, New Hampshire: Privately Distributed, 1987
Reviewed by Seymour B. Sarason, Yale University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 205-206, ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] When a book is privately distributed, you assume that its contents are either so narrow or restricted as to be of little interest to a wide audience. You could also assume in some instances that the book is so poorly written that no publisher wanted to touch it. Neither assumption makes sense in this case for several reasons. For one thing, Robert White was an important influence in American psychology and any time someone of his stature and accomplishments writes anything, it deserves a wide audience. Second, Robert White is a gifted writer who brings ideas and people’s personalities to life. Third, he lived through the greatest transformations in psychology and so when he reflects on his life and career, many people will be interested in his account. Fourth, what he recounts in this book is more than history, personal and professional, but commentary on where we are and should be going. I am mystified by the fact that this book is privately circulated-it deserves wide circulation.

Requests for reprints should be sent to Seymour B. Sarason, Ph.D., Institute for Social and Policy Studies, Yale University, P.O. Box 16A Yale Station, New Haven, Connecticut 06520-7382.

The Making of an American Psychologist: An Autobiography
Book Author: Seymour B. Sarason. San Francisco: Jossy-Bass, 1988
Reviewed by William F. Stone, University of Maine
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1989, Vol. 10, No. 2, Pages 207-210, ISSN 0271-0137
American psychology is undergoing schism, and this book comes along at an appropriate time to help explain the historical origins of the quarrels between scientists and practitioners that have now split American psychology. Seymour Sarason had a hand in shaping the modern discipline of psychology, and has been a major critic of the direction it took. Nominally a clinical psychologist, he is in fact one of the founders of the American Psychological Society, the science-oriented group that recently broke away from the American Psychological Association.

Requests for reprints should be sent to William F. Stone, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, University of Maine, Orono, Maine 04469.

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