Introducing the New HoP

The soon-to-appear February 2010 issue of History of Psychology is the journal’s first issue under the editorship of Wade Pickren. Pickren, also currently president of the Society for the History of Psychology, Division 26 of the American Psychological Association, has been kind enough to provide AHP‘s readers with an overview of his vision for the journal, as well as a sneak peak at the content of the first issue. He writes,

As the new editor of History of Psychology, I want to be careful to keep the high quality that Michael Sokal and James Capshew maintained over the first 12 volumes. At the same time, I will introduce several new features that I think will enhance our readers experience and contribute to our field of scholarship. In this first year, we will have a special issue on the international historiography of psychology, with reviews of historical scholarship from the Czech Republic, Italy, Brazil, Argentina, and Spain. To celebrate the 150th anniversary of Gustav Fechner’s Elemente der Psychophysik, we will have a special section co-edited by David K. Robinson.  A new feature that will appear in each issue is a regular contribution on teaching the history of psychology. The history of psychology scholarly community has much to offer our colleagues who teach the history course, but who do not have specialty training or involvement in the field. Barney Beins, an excellent teacher, will serve as the editor of this section.  We have also expanded our news and notes section to include a feature on archives, brief research notes, as well as expanding the number and range of news and notes. Kelli Vaughn Blount is the editor of this new section, now titled, Sources, Research Reports, and News. I think our readers will really enjoy what Kelli has done with section. This first one has a fascinating account of the development of the Scottish Educational Archives and the work of Godfrey Thomson.

We will also have occasional features, including edited oral histories, which will appear under the rubric of Documenting Psychology’s History. The February issue has an interview with the late Kenneth B. Clark that highlights the efforts of Kenneth and Mamie Phipps Clark in what are now famously called the Doll Studies. We will also have occasional essay book reviews, which we think will help us offer a big picture view of recent historical scholarship. Look for one on William James in an upcoming issue.

As Pickren details, the issue includes “An Interview with Kenneth Bancroft Clark” by Lawrence Nyman and a piece on “Teaching Measurement Through Historical Sources” by Bernard C. Beins, editor of journal’s new Teaching the History of Psychology section. The expanded Sources, Research Notes, and News section, editted by Kelli Vaughn-Blount, incudes several items; under Sources appears an item on “Archival Sources for Sir Godfrey Hilton Thomson” by Ian J. Deary, Martin Lawn, Caroline E. Brett, Allison Pattie; under Research Notes there appears “Historians of Psychology No Longer Invisible in the American Association Publication Manual” by Hendrika Vande Kemp and “A Student’s Quandary: Historian to Archivist and Back Again” by Jennifer L. Bazar; and under News appears “Report on the public symposium, After Freud Left: Centennial Reflections His Visit to the United States, at the New York Academy of Medicine” by Deborah Johnson.

In addition to the content changes Pickren details, the journal has also updated its cover design, the new version of which is pictured at right. Listed below are the three all new research article that are included in the February 2010 issue of HoP, along with informal author commentary on their work.

Michel ter Hark: “The Psychology of Thinking before the Cognitive Revolution: Otto Selz on Problems, Schemas and Creativity”

Michel ter Hark is working on a project about Otto Selz’s contributions to the development of cognitive science, especially how Selz’s ideas are reflected in the work of Karl Popper, Karl Duncker, A. D. de Groot, and the Gestalt psychologists. In this article, Professor ter Hark focuses on Selz’s development of the concept of schemas and their role in creativity. In doing so, he explores Selz’s differences with some of the Gestalt psychologists.

Frank van der Horst and Rene van der Veer: “The Ontogeny of an Idea: John Bowlby and Contemporaries on Mother-child Separation”

The article by Frank van der Horst and Rene van der Veer is one of a series of their publications on the development of Bowlby’s work on attachment. In their project they describe how Bowlby moved from a psychoanalytic framework to an ethological framework. In all their work, they seek to show the historical embeddedness of developmental psychological theory. In this article, the authors argue that Bowlby settled on the importance of the infant’s attachment to its mother as his foundational premise very early in his work. While his premise was at variance with many others of his professional circle, he did draw on ideas and relationships with others in British society.

Leeat Granek: “Grief as Pathology: The Evolution of Grief Theory in Psychology From Freud to the Present”

Leeat Granek utilizes critical social, and feminist perspectives to examine the history of the construct of grief in the twentieth century. This article is part of her project to show how grief was pathologized by the psychological disciplines in the twentieth century.  She questions how and why grief theory moved from Freud’s psychoanalytic, but non-pathological, model to the current conceptualization of grief as a pathology to be treated.

For full information on the new HoP visit the journal page on the Society for the History of Psychology website.

About Jacy Young

Jacy Young is a professor at Quest University Canada. A critical feminist psychologist and historian of psychology, she is committed to critical pedagogy and public engagement with feminist psychology and the history of the discipline.