A Brief History of Psychology  book cover
6th Edition

A Brief History of Psychology

ISBN 9781138284746
Published June 23, 2020 by Routledge
270 Pages 33 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This brief, inexpensive text offers great flexibility in teaching the history of psychology. Used as a stand-alone text or with readers, this engaging book is noted for its analysis of the scientific and philosophical emergence of the field as well as its coverage of contemporary psychology and emerging areas. Readers appreciate the book's balanced coverage of experimental, applied, and clinical psychology, as well as the clear and succinct presentation of the field's major events and schools of thought. The sixth edition features an expanded pedagogical program with bolded terms, a complete glossary, more illustrations, and web-based instructional materials including PowerPoints, a test bank, discussion questions, and more. Special emphasis has also been placed on the role of the American Psychological Association (APA) in the history of psychology.

Extensively updated throughout, the sixth edition features:

    • A revised final chapter with a current analysis of the state of the field, including the growth of the APA as well as specialized organizations that promote the science and profession of psychology, and the push to influence policies that address global challenges, such as environmental sustainability, intergroup conflict, health disparities, and the population explosion.
    • A discussion of the growth in the number and role of women and ethnic minorities in psychology, and the promotion of diversity across both demographic and intellectual perspectives.
    • Recent developments in the growth of neuroscience, cognitive science, artificial intelligence, and the diversification and internationalization of psychology.
    • Portraits of some major figures in the history of psychology, including psychology’s first Nobel Prize winners.
    • Recent and evolving changes in the practice of psychology, including more emphasis on "evidence-based practice," prescription privileges, and the emergence of the importance of psychological practice in health care.
    • Recent changes in the APA, including new divisions and new elected officials and its emerging focus on advocacy.

Used independently or as a supplement with readers, this brief text is intended for undergraduate and graduate courses on the history of psychology. Due to its brevity and engaging style, the book can be used in introductory courses to introduce students to the field. The enormous index and substantial glossary make this volume a useful desk reference for psychology and related disciplines.

Table of Contents


1. Introduction

PART I: Preexperimental Psychology

2. Early Developments

3. The Lines of Development from Science

4. The Lines of Development from Philosophy

PART II: The Rise of Experimental Psychology

5. Wundt’s Immediate Predecessors

6. Wilhelm Wundt

7. The Contemporary Scene in the Age of Wundt

8. William James and Psychology in the United States

PART III: Psychology in the 20th Century

9. The Age of Schools

10. Structuralism and Functionalism

11. Behaviorism

12. Gestalt Psychology

13. Psychoanalysis

14. The Immediate Postschools Era

15. The Last Half of the 20th Century

PART IV: Psychology’s Promising Past and Enigmatic Future

16. An Evaluation: Psychology’s Promising Past and Enigmatic Future

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Michael Wertheimer has taught and published in the history of psychology for 70 years, including the first five editions of this book. Born in Germany to famed Gestalt theorist Max Wertheimer, he studied at Swarthmore, Johns Hopkins, and Harvard, and is now Professor Emeritus at the University of Colorado, Boulder, USA.

Antonio E. Puente has taught and published in the history of psychology and neuropsychology for over 40 years. Born in Cuba, he studied at the University of Florida and the University of Georgia, USA. He worked with Roger W. Sperry, a winner of the Nobel Prize, and was the 125th president of the American Psychological Association.