Tag Archives: Harlow

Special Issue: History of Evolutionary Psychiatry

The June 2010 issue of History of Psychiatry, dedicated to “A Hundred Years of Evolutionary Psychiatry (1872-1972),” has just been released online. This special issue features a number of articles of interest to historians of psychology, including, among others, an article on Harry Harlow (left) and the nature of love by Marga Vicedo of the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology and an article on the work of Lauretta Bender and the African American psyche by Denis Doyle. Titles, authors and abstracts to these and the other articles in the June issue follow below.

“The evolutionary turn in psychiatry: A historical overview,” by Pieter R. Adriaens and Andreas De Block. The abstract reads:

Ever since Darwin, psychiatrists have been tempted to put evolutionary theory to use in their efforts to understand and explain various aspects of mental disorders. Following a number of pivotal developments in the history of evolutionary thought, including degeneration theory, ethology and the modern synthesis, this introductory paper provides an overview of the many trends and schools in the history of ‘psychiatric Darwinism’ and ‘evolutionary psychiatry’. We conclude with an attempt to distinguish three underlying motives in asking evolutionary questions about mental disorders.

“Schizophrenia, evolution and the borders of biology: On Huxley et al.’s 1964 paper in Nature,” by Raf De Bont. The abstract reads: Continue reading Special Issue: History of Evolutionary Psychiatry

BBC4 Show on Harlow’s Monkeys

Mind Changers, a BBC Radio 4 production which explores the development of psychology in the twentieth century, has just released an episode entitled, Harlow’s Monkeys. Mind Changers, Series 4, has been discussed on AHP previously in relation to the first two episodes of the program which, respectively, discuss the Rosenhan Experiment and the Hawthorne Effect.

As described on the Mind Changers website, in the 30 minute program, host Claudia Hammond,

visits the Primate Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin, where Harlow conducted his experiments, and meets his former assistant, Helen LeRoy, and the current director of the lab, Professor Christopher Coe. At the University of Massachussets, Amherst, she meets Harlow’s last PhD student, now Chair of Psychology, Professor Melinda Novak. She also talks to Roger Fouts, Professor of Psychology at the University of Central Washington, about the perceived cruelty of Harlow’s work, and to Dr John Oates, lecturer in the Centre for Childhood, Development and Learning at the Open University.

Continue reading BBC4 Show on Harlow’s Monkeys

History of Mother-Child Research in JHBS

The most recent issue of the Journal of the History of the Behavorial Sciences contains several articles on the history of mother-child research. In her article, Marga Vicedo, whose historical work on Konrad Lorenz and mother-child research has previously been discussed on AHP, examines the now infamous work of Harry Harlow on mother love. In “Mothers, machines, and morals: Harry Harlow’s work on primate love from lab to legend” Vicedo examines the oft perpetuated results of Harlow’s attachment research with rhesus monkeys.

In her article, “‘Monkeys, babies, idiots'” and ‘primitives’: Nature-nurture debates and philanthropic foundation support for American anthropology in the 1920s and 1930s,” Kersten Jacobson Biehn looks specifically at the history of American cultural anthropology. Jacobson Biehn’s abstract reads, Continue reading History of Mother-Child Research in JHBS