Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 757 pages of information about Harvard Psychological Studies, Volume 1.

The pain-scream is of interest in this consideration of auditory reactions because it increases the range of sounds which we should expect frogs to hear if we grant the probability of them hearing their own voices.

It may be worth while to recall at this point the fact that a whistle from the human lips—­the nearest approach to the pain-scream among the sounds which were used as stimuli in the experiments on respiration—­caused marked inhibition of respiration.  Perhaps this fact may be interpreted in the light of the pain-scream reaction.  I may add that I have never seen a frog give a motor reaction to the pain-scream.  Thinking it would certainly alarm the animals and cause them to make some movement which would serve for reaction-time measurements, I made repeated trials of its effects, but could never detect anything except respiratory changes.

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The modern efforts to bring all sciences into a system or at least to classify them, from Bacon to Spencer, Wundt and Pearson have never, if we abstract here from Hegel, given much attention to those questions of principle which are offered by the science of psychology.  Of course the psychological separation of different mental functions has often given the whole scheme for the system, the classification thus being too often more psychological than logical.  Psychology itself, moreover, has had for the most part a dignified position in the system; even when it has been fully subordinated to the biological sciences, it was on the other hand placed superior to the totality of mental and moral sciences, which then usually have found their unity under the positivistic heading ‘sociology.’  And where the independent position of psychology is acknowledged and the mental and moral sciences are fully accredited, as for instance with Wundt, psychology remains the fundamental science of all mental sciences; the objects with which philology, history, economics, politics, jurisprudence, theology deal are the products of the processes with which psychology deals, and philology, history, theology, etc., are thus related to psychology, as astronomy, geology, zooelogy are related to physics.  There is thus nowhere a depreciation of psychology, and yet it is not in its right place.  Such a position for psychology at the head of all ‘Geisteswissenschaften’ may furnish a very simple classification for it, but it is one which cannot express the difficult character of psychology and the complex relations of the system of mental sciences.  The historical and philological and theological sciences cannot be subordinated to psychology if psychology as science is to be cooerdinated with physics, that is, if it is a science which describes and explains

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