Volume 11, Number 2, Spring
On the Social and Political Implications of Cognitive Psychology
Isaac Prilleltensky, University of Manitoba
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 127-136 ISSN 0271-0137
Psychological theories and practices inform the analysis and problem-solving of human and social predicaments. As such, they often have significant sociopolitical implications. The place of prominence enjoyed by cognitivism in psychology requires that we examine its ideological, social and political repercussions. It is argued that the primacy ascribed to the mind and the individual agent in cognitive psychology, in the best Cartesian tradition, tends to reinforce the need to adjust intrapsychic, as opposed to societal structures in the remediation of personal and social problems. Examples to support this argument are drawn from the areas of cognitive theory, research, education and therapy.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Isaac Prilletensky, Child Guidance Clinic, 700 Elgin Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3E 1B2.
Benny Shanon, The Hebrew University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 137-152 ISSN 0271-0137
The experience of consciousness is analyzed. First, a pre-theoretical characterization of the term “consciousness” is attempted. Second, the phenomenology of human consciousness is described. Specifically, consciousness is defined in terms of several patterns all of which consist of the coupling of pairs of opposites. Resonance between such opposites may be the key charactereristics of human consciousness. Third, the function of consciousness is considered. It is suggested that consciousness is functional in that it offers a medium in which cognition may be conducted in a manner akin to action in the real world. More general theoretical ramifications having to do with the representational view of mind are also discussed.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Benny Shanon, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Mount Scopus, Jerusalem 91905, Israel.
Contemporary Models of Consciousness: Part I
Jean E. Burns, Consciousness Research, San Leandro, California
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 153-172 ISSN 0271-0137
Recent models of consciousness are reviewed which explore the relationship of consciousness to physical laws; many of these also explore the relationship of consciousness to biological findings. Issues investigated by these models are discussed, with the issues framed in a general way in order to provide a comparison between the models. In Part I the issues discussed are: (1) What is the causal relationship between consciousness and the physical (physicalism, dualism, etc.)? and (2) what physical characteristics are associated with the interface between brain/physical world and consciousness?
Requests for reprints should be sent to Jean Burns, Ph.D., Consciousness Research, 1525 153rd Avenue, San Leadro, California 94578.
The Pluralistic Approach to the Nature of Feelings
Thomas Natsoulas, University of California, Davis
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 173-218 ISSN 0271-0137
This article contains an initial statement of the pluralistic approach together with some justification for its adoption by psychologists. Two alternative coneptions of the nature of feelings, William James’s and Edmund Husserl’s, are discussed with the pluralistic approach in mind. Psychologists who would practice the pluralistic approach with respect to the nature of feelings must develop a plural conception of the nature of feelings. A plural conception differs from a singular conception by simultaneously including more than a single account of the relevant phenomena. Rather than wreaking destruction on alternative conceptions, the pluralistic approach is such as welcomes, encourages, and even commissions the formulation of alternative accounts of the phenomena of concern. Rightly or wrongly, the pluralistic psychologist feels closest to an ideal explanatory framework at those points in his or her plural conception where the alternative accounts are mutually contradictory.
Requests for reprints should be sent to T. Nataoulas, Ph.D., Psychology Department, University of California, Davis, California, 95616.
Complementarity and the Relation Between Psychological and Neuropysiological Phenomena
Douglas M. Snyder, Berkeley, California
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 219-224 ISSN 0271-0137
In their recent article, Kirsch and Hyland questioned the relation between psychological and associated neurophysiological phenomena in the introduction of complementarity into psychology. Mishkin’s work on the neurophysiological basis of memory and perception provides an example of the extension of complementarity that I have proposed and that can serve as the basis for empirical testing of this extension. Mishkin’s thesis that memory storage occurs at sensory stations in the cortex allows for the resolution of a fundamental problem in cognitive psychology, namely the reciprocal dependence of perception and memory. Also, Mishkin’s thesis allows that psychological phenomena do not depend on an objective world for their existence.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Douglas M. Snyder, Ph.D., Box 228, Berkeley, California 94701.
The Moon Is Not There When I See It: A Response to Snyder
Mark Garrison, Kentucky State University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 225-232 ISSN 0271-0137
In a series of articles, Snyder has developed the idea of simultaneous situations and that concept’s implications for physics and psychology (1983a. 1983b, 1983c, 1984, 1986, 1988, and 1989). In recent articles (1986, 1989, 1990), he develops the application of the concept to the Einstein, Poldsky, and Rosen Gedankenexperiment that utilized spacelike separated events to solve the problem that arises in Bohr’s complimentarity interpretation of quantum mechanics. In the course of his most recent article (1990), Snyder made several criticisms of Garrison (1988) in order to strenghten Snyder’s argument for a cognitive-interpretive activity in the gedankenexperiment. These criticisms are addressed and Snyder’s Einsteinian realism is contrasted with Garrison’s verificationist stance.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Mark Garrison, Ph.D., Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences, Kentucky State University, Frankfort, Kentucky 40601.
Intuitive Judgments of Change
Book Author: Linda Silka. New York: Springer-Verlag, 1989
Reviewed by Reid Hastie, University of Colarado
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 233-234 ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] “All things make room for others, and nothing remains still” (Heracleitus, Maxim; ca. 500 B.C.; as quoted by Plato, Cratylus, Section 402A.) … or so it seems….
Intuitive Judgments of Change is a thought-provoking essay on the manner in which ordinary people judge whether or not another person or some general condition of the larger social world (e.g., the crime rate) has changed. The text is a successful mixture of relevant anecdotes, survey research findings, and the results of the author’s own experimental research. Her conclusion is that we are quick to see change in social conditions but slow to see change in other individuals.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Reid Hastie, Ph.D., Psychology Department, Center for Research on Judgment and Policy, University of Colarado, Boulder, Colorado 80309-0344.
Critical Theories of Psychological Development
Book Author: John M. Broughton. New York: Plenum, 1987
Reviewed by Geoff Goodman, Northwestern University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 235-238 ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] John Boughton is worried. Children of the modern world are dying younger and younger, at the hands of his own field of study, developmental psychology. He wants to warn you about it so you will join him in stopping the slaughter.
Broughton presents his children’s manifesto in this collection of essays in which Broughton and his colleagues contend that developmental psychology has become little more than religious dogma, replacing the study of history as chief interpreter of human change. The rigorous program of research developmental psychologists have pursued has ignored the whole context of human being and acting: the grand sociohistorical and political matrix that gives our lives their meaning. For Boughton, developmental psychology, finally has no soul.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Geoff Goodman, 710 N. Lake Shore Drive #505, Chicago, Illinois 60611.
Perils of the Night: A Feminist Study of Nineteenth-Century Gothic
Book Author: Eugenia C. Delamotte. New York: Oxford University Press, 1989
Reviewed by Matthew C. Brennan, Indiana State University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 239-242 ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] Before the 1960s, most studies of the Gothic merely made lists of conventions and then illustrated them by drawing on the novels of Horace Walpole, Matthew Lewis, Ann Radcliffe, and Clara Reeve. In contrast, more recent studies have looked behind the secret doors of the Gothic stage, attempting to shed light on the psychological meaning of such conventions as the dark interiors of castles and convents, and the ghost-haunted, misty vistas that surround them. In this vein, G.R. Thompson has defined a Gothic monomyth as part of dark Romanticism; Judith Wilt has traced a continuous Gothic tradition within England, while Elizabeth MacAndrew has traced one from the eighteenth century to the late twentieth; and increasingly critics such as Gilbert and Gubar, Norman Holland, and Ellen Moers have explored the Gothic in terms of women’s psychology and social status.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Matthew C. Brennan, Ph.D., Department of English, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 47809.
Book Author: Hugh Kenner. Berkeley, California: North Point Press, 1989
Reviewed by Steven E. Connelly, Indiana State University
The Journal of Mind and Behavior , Spring 1990, Vol. 11, No. 2, Pages 243-246, ISSN 0271-0137
[Note: First paragraph, no abstract available.] “Our posterity will know us in ways we do not,” writes Hugh Kenner. If our posterity is wise and we are lucky, it will know us through Hugh Kenner, for Mazes demonstrates how very thoroughly, in an age of fragmentation and narrowing specialties, Hugh Kenner knows the twentieth century. Students of literature know Kenner as the foremost authority on the Modernists, an accurate but narrow perception, for Kenner is probably the best general literary critic at work today, and yet he is and has long been much more than a literary critic: no one interested in the mind of the twentieth century can ignore him. A collection of fifty book reviews, essays, radio pieces, and obituaries – the longest a mere eleven pages – Mazes confirms the wide range of Kenner’s expertise.
Requests for reprints should be sent to Steven E. Connelly, Ph.D., Department of English, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 47809.