1st Edition

The Routledge Guidebook to James’s Principles of Psychology

By David Leary Copyright 2018
    378 Pages
    by Routledge

    378 Pages
    by Routledge

    The Routledge Guidebook to James’s Principles of Psychology is an engaging and accessible introduction to a monumental text that has influenced the development of both psychological science and philosophical pragmatism in important and lasting ways. Written for readers approaching William James’s classic work for the first time as well as for those without knowledge of its entire scope, this guidebook not only places this work within its historical context, it provides clear explications of its intertwined aspects and arguments, and examines its relevance within today’s psychology and philosophy.

    Offering a close reading of this text, The Routledge Guidebook to James’s Principles of Psychology is divided into three main parts:

    • Background

    • Principles

    • Elaborations.

    It also includes two useful appendices that outline the sources of James’s various chapters and indicate the parallel coverages of two later texts written by James, an abbreviated version of his Principles and a psychological primer for teachers. This is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand this influential work.

    Author’s Preface

    List of abbreviations

    I. Background

    Ch. 1 Life and Work

    Ch. 2 Substance and Style

    Ch. 3 Evidence and Interpretation

    Ch. 4 Psychology and Philosophy

    II. Principles

    Ch. 5 Mind and Body

    Ch. 6 Habit and Thought

    Ch. 7 Perception and Conception

    Ch. 8 Imagination and Memory

    Ch. 9 Cognition and Emotion

    Ch. 10 Consciousness and Subconsciousness

    Ch. 11 Attention and Will

    Ch. 12 Self and Others

    III. Elaborations

    Ch. 13 Belief and Reality

    Ch. 14 Known and Unknown

    Ch. 15 Publication and Beyond

    Ch. 16 Epilogue and Prologue

    Appendix A: Sources and Treatments

    Appendix B: Coverages and Parallels




    David E. Leary is University Professor Emeritus and Dean of Arts and Sciences Emeritus at the University of Richmond, USA.

    "Reflecting a lifetime of research and teaching in modern psychology and sympathetic study of its most eloquent writer, David Leary has produced a thorough and readable guide to William James’s classic text. It is a reference guide and more. Leary explains James’s ideas in the contexts of his own development, in the contexts of the emerging New Psychology of the late nineteenth century, and in their creative relation with later psychology and philosophy. This is magisterial coverage of a masterwork." 

    Paul Croce, Stetson University, USA, and former President of the William James Society

    "David Leary’s ground-breaking book walks readers carefully through James’s masterpiece, without losing the forest for the trees. Leary shows us something that has been elusive in the literature: how the Principles of Psychology, with all its rich details, hangs together as a whole."

    Alexander Klein, California State University, Long Beach, USA