1902 Encyclopedia > Psychology > Further Reading on Psychology

(Part 90)

(L) Further Reading on Psychology


A. Historical

There are few good works on the history of psychology; the only one in English (R. Blakey, History of the Philosophy of Mind from the Earliest Period to the Present Time, London , 1848) is said to be worthless. F.A. Carus’s Geschichte der Psychologie (Leipsic [Leizig], 1808) is at least useful for reference. A work bearing the same title by H. Siebeck, of which only the first part has yet appeared (consisting of two divisions – (i.) Die Psychologie von Aristoteles, (ii.) Die Psychologie von Aristotoles bis zu Thomas von Aquino, Gotha, 1880 and 1884) is thoroughly and carefully done. Die Philosophie in ihrer Geschichte (I. Psychologie), by the late Professor Harms (Berlin, 1878), is also good. Ribot’s La Psychologie Anglaise contemporaine (2nd ed., Paris, 1875) and La Psychologie Allemande contemporaine (Paris, 1879) are lucid and concise in style, though the latter work in places is superficial and inaccurate.

B. Positive

The most useful and complete work as an introduction, and for the English reader, is Mr Sulley’s well-arranged and well-written Outlines of Psychology (2nd ed., London, 1885). Of more advanced text-books the late Professor Volkmann’s Lehrbuch der Psychologie (2 vols., 3d ed., Köthen, 1885, edited by Cornelius) is a monument worthy the lifelong labours it entailed. Written in the main from a Herbartian standpoint, it is still the work of one who not only had read and thought over all that was worth reading by psychologists of every school but was unusually gifted with the qualities that make a good investigator and a good expositor.

The importance of the Herbartian psychology in English students has been too long overlooked; while it has been too long overlooked; while it has much in common with the English preference for empirical methods, it is in aim, if not attainment, greatly in advance of English writers in exactness and system. Other excellent works of the same school are M.W. H. Drobisch’s Empirische Psychologie (Leipsic [Leipzig], 1842), T. Waitz’s Lehrbuch der Psychologie als Naturwissenschaft (Brunswick, 1849), and Steinthal’s Einleitung in die Psychologie und Sprachwissenschaft (Berlin, 1871).

To the honoured name of Lotze belongs a distinguished place in any enumeration of recent productions in philosophy; his Medicinische Psychologie (Götteingen, 1852) is still valuable; but it is out of print and scarce. A large part of his Mikrokosmos (3 vols., 3rd ed., 1876-80; translated into English, 2 vols., 1885) and one book of his Metaphysik (2d ed., 1884; also translated into English) are, however, devoted to psychology.

The close connexion between the study of mind and the study of the organism has been more and more recognized as the present century has advanced, and the doctrine of evolution in particular has been as fruitful in this study as in other sciences that deal with life. In this respect Mr Herbert Spencer’s Principles of Psychology (2 vols., 2d ed., 1870) and Data of Ethics (1879) occupy a foremost place. Dr Bain’s standard volumes, The Senses and the Intellect (3rd., 1873) and The Emotions and the Will (3d ed., 1875), contain a good deal of "physiological psychology," but no adequate recognition of the importance of the modern theory of development; still, with the exception of Locke, perhaps no English writer has made equally important contributions to the science of mind. It is very questionable whether the time has yet come for a systematic treatment of the connexions of mind and body. Wundt’s Physiologische Psychologie (2 vol., 2nd ed., 1880) is rather a physiology added to a psychology than an attempt at such a systematic treatment. It is, however, a thoroughly able work by one who is both a good psychologist and a good physiologist. (J. W.*)

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The above article was written by: James Ward, M.A., LL.D., D/Sc.; Fellow of Trin. Coll., and Professor of Mental Philosophy, Cambridge; Gifford Lecturer, University of Aberdeen,1895-97; author of Naturalism and Agnosticism.

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