Fall 2020 JHBS: Biofeedback, Kokyo’s Study of Double Personality, Revisiting Guthrie’s Even the Rat was White, and More

The Fall 2020 issue of the Journal of the History of Behavioral Sciences is now online. Full details below.

“Seeking double personality: Nakamura Kokyo’s work in abnormal psychology in early 20th century Japan,” Yu?chuan Wu. Abstract:

This paper examines Nakamura Kokyo’s study of a woman with a split personality who lived in his home as a maid from 1917 until her death in 1940. She was his indispensable muse and assistant in his efforts to promote abnormal psychology and psychotherapy. This paper first explores the central position of multiple personality in Nakamura’s theory of the subconscious, which was largely based on the model of dissociation. It then examines how it became a central issue in Nakamura’s disputes with religions including the element of spirit possession, which invoked Western psychical research to modernize their doctrines. While both were concerned with the subconscious and alterations in personality, Nakamura’s psychological view was distinguished from those spiritual understandings by his emphasis on individual memories, particularly those that were traumatic, and hysteria. The remaining sections of the paper will examine Nakamura’s views on memory and hysteria, which conflicted with both the academic mainstream and the established cultural beliefs. This conflict may partly explain the limited success of Nakamura’s academic and social campaigns.

“Learning to stand tall: Idiopathic scoliosis, behavioral electronics, and technologically?assisted patient participation in treatment, c. 1969–1992,” Lucie Gerber. Abstract:

Drawing on the archives of American learning psychologist Neal E. Miller, this article investigates the role of instrumentation in the expansion and diversification of the behavior therapy domain from the late 1960s to the early 1990s. Through the case of Miller’s research on the use of biofeedback to treat idiopathic scoliosis, it argues that the post?World War II adoption of electronic technology by behavioral psychologists contributed to extending their subject matter to include physiological processes and somatic conditions. It also enabled a technologically?instrumented move outside the laboratory through the development of portable ambulatory treatment devices. Using the example of the Posture?Training Device that Miller and his collaborators invented for the behavioral treatment of idiopathic scoliosis, this paper considers how electromechanical psychological instrumentation illustrated a larger and ambiguous strategic shift in behavior therapy from an orientation toward external control to one of self?control.

“Social sciences, modernization, and late colonialism: The Centro de Estudos da Guiné Portuguesa,” Frederico Ágoas. Abstract:

In Portugal, studies of transformations since the mid?1950s in colonial social research have focused on the colonial school in Lisbon or other bodies directly under the supervision of the metropolitan administration. Nonmetropolitan initiatives have been neglected and the social?scientific undertakings of the Centro de Estudos da Guiné Portuguesa (CEGP), in particular, have been only marginally dealt with. This article maps CEGP’s creation in Bissau, in 1945, and its social?scientific activity not only to establish its precedence but also to highlight local colonial enterprise and to specify its imprint upon developments in the metropole. It addresses CEGP’s immediate context and main actors, institutional setting, research activities, publications, and other scientific outlets, to then put forward some concluding remarks regarding the epistemic reach of overseas governmental measures and the practical effects, in metropolitan colonial policies and scientific research, of peripheral imperial bureaucratic knowledge.

Reappraisal Review
“Reappraising Robert Val Guthrie’s Even the rat was White (1976, 2003)”

“Writing history is an act of justice: A reappraisal of Robert V. Guthrie’s Even the rat was White: A historical view of psychology,” Layli Maparyan.

““Set the Record Straight:” Creating social change through storytelling,” Shari E. Miles?Cohen.

“Acknowledging a Legacy of Anti?Black Pseudoscience: A review of Even the Rat Was White,” Bedford E. F. Palmer II.

“The Whiteness of psychology: Thinking about Robert V. Guthrie’s Even the rat was White four decades later,” Martin Summers.

“Robert V. Guthrie and Even the Rat was White: A Retrospective Appreciation of the First Edition,” Andrew S. Winston.

Other Reviews
“The Participant: A Century of Participation in Four Stories. Kelty, Christopher M.,” Eric Gable.

“The last archive. A podcast series. Lepore, Jill,” Christopher D. Green.

“The Republic of Color. Rossi, Michael,” Jane Kromm.

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.