History of Psychology Essay

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History of Psychology Kathleen Riggs PSY/310 October 4, 2012 Alicia Avery History of Psychology In this paper I will be discussing the roots in early philosophy leading into the 19th century that influences the development of modern psychology. I will identify philosophers whom both historically relate to the beginnings of psychology as a formal discipline and philosophers in the western tradition that were primary contributors to the formation of psychology as a discipline, and also the development of the science of psychology during the 19th century. Psychology is a scientific discipline which is the study of human behavior, how people feel, think, and behave (Mattiuzzi, 2006). Psychology as a whole is about how people understand the world and how they react to it, how people learn and how they use that knowledge, and how they relate to others and how they get along in groups (Mattiuzzi, 2006). There are a few philosophers who historically relate to the beginnings of psychology as a formal discipline Hermann Ebbinghaus and Rene Descartes. Hermann Ebbinghaus is known as the first person to study human memory experimentally. Ebbinghaus constantly reminded his readers that questions regarding human nature and behavior are not new and that “psychologist must recognize their deep roots in philosophy; psychology’s history cannot be understood adequately without knowing something of philosophy’s history” (Goodwin, 2008, "A Long Past"). Ebbinghaus’s findings go deep through ancient Greece, through Plato, Aristotle and the writings of others, to medieval church philosophers and then into the Renaissance era. Rene Descartes is the son of a French lawyer who attended the Jesuit College of Henri IV in La Fleche when he was eight years old to study literature, science, mathematics, and grammar ("Rene Descartes”, 2002). At age 16 he

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