A new memoir from psychologist Michael Wertheimer will be of interest to AHP readers. The autobiography, Facets of an Academic’s Life: A Memoir, is available now from Springer and is described as follows:
This is the life story of the oldest living member of the famous Wertheimer family, beautifully narrated and richly illustrated from the author’s vast stock of memorabilia and his unfailing memory. It is a memoir, but at the same time a document of the exodus of German-speaking psychologists to the New World, which left the homeland scientifically shattered. This lovingly-written pictorial archive of 80 years of the history of modern psychology, shaped by the momentous events of WWII, belongs on the shelf of every psychologist, theoretical, experimental, and clinical, as it gives us the story of how the scientific heritage in Europe and America merged to form the broad and strong disciplines now in our hands, told by one of its premier historical representatives.
Prof. em. Lothar Spillmann, University of Freiburg, Germany
AHP readers interested in getting their historical work to a broad audience will be interested in the new guidelines for authors interested in publishing historical scholarship in the American Psychologist, the flagship journal of the American Psychological Association. The guidelines, written by Associate Editor Alexandra Rutherford, outline some of the considerations interested authors should keep in mind before submitting work to the journal. The full guidelines can be found online here.
AHP readers following the literature on the history of psychedelic treatments will be interested in a new piece in press, and now online, at History of Psychiatry:
“A dangerous method? Psychedelic therapy at Modum Bad, Norway, 1961–76,” by Petter Grahl Johnstad. Abstract:
After many years of disregard, the use of psychedelic drugs in psychiatric treatment has re-emerged in recent years. The prospect that psychedelics may again be integrated into mainstream psychiatry has aroused interest in long-forgotten research and experience from the previous phase of psychedelic therapy, which lasted from the late 1940s to the 1970s. This article will discuss one large-scale psychedelic therapy programme at Modum Bad Nervesanatorium, a psychiatric clinic which treated 379 inpatients with psychedelic drugs during the years 1961–76. The psychiatrists there initially regarded the psychedelic treatment as efficacious and without serious negative reactions, but reports of long-term harm have since surfaced. This article discusses how insights from Modum Bad might benefit the new generation of psychedelic treatment efforts.
This article explores historical sociology as a complementary source of knowledge for scientific research, considering barriers and facilitators to this work through reflections on one project. This project began as a study of the emergence and reception of the infant disorganized attachment classification, introduced in the 1980s by Ainsworth’s student Mary Main, working with Judith Solomon. Elsewhere I have reported on the findings of collaborative work with attachment researchers, without giving full details of how this came about. Here, I will offer personal reflections arising from the process, and my work in what Hasok Chang has called history as “complementary science.”
The New York Times‘ Overlooked series, which provides obituaries for individuals whose deaths were initially overlooked by the newspaper, has recently turned attention to psychologist Margaret McFarland. McFarland, a consultant to the classic children’s television show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, has come to the fore more than 30 years after her death in a moment where there has been a resurgence of interest in Fred Rogers and his television legacy (including a podcast, documentary, and feature film dedicated to the man and his influence).
As the New York Times writes,
Rogers was ordained as a minister and was invited to appear as Mister Rogers on a show in Canada in the early 1960s. He returned to Pittsburgh in 1966 to start “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” on WQED-TV. The show aired for the first time nationally, on public television stations, in 1968. McFarland became his chief consultant.
She and Rogers met nearly every week to discuss scripts and songs that Rogers had written. Her advice became so valuable to Rogers that he took “extensive handwritten notes” and recorded their meetings on audiocassettes, “which I often overheard him replaying in his office,” recalled Arthur Greenwald, a producer and writer who worked with Rogers.
She would work on the show for 20 years, and spoke regularly with Rogers until around her death in 1988. (Rogers died in 2003.)
The full Overlooked obituary can be read online here.