This is an e-text about the historical and philosophical background of Psychology. It was originally written for
the benefit of my students at Shippensburg University, but I hope that it helps anyone with an intellectual interest in the
field. The material is original and copyrighted by myself, and any distribution must be accompanied by my name and the
copyright information. For personal educational use, it is free to one and all. Please direct your comments to
me at email@example.com.
Note: Main chapters are in bold
; shorter sections, readings, maps, and timelines are in regular type.
Part One: The Ancients
Psyche and Eros
Two Poems by Sappho
Timeline: From 600 BC to 200 BC
Map: Ancient Mediterranean
Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle
Plato Selection: Allegory of the Cave
Kiss Hank's Ass, by Rev. Jim Huber (off-site)
Epicureans and Stoics
A Letter from Epicurus
Selections from Epictetus
Timeline: From 1 AD to 400 AD
Map: Roman Empire 116 AD
The Roman Empire
Part Two: The Rebirth
The Middle Ages
A Letter from Heloise to Abelard
Timeline: From 1000 to 1400
Map: Europe 1278
The Beginnings of Modern Philosophy
A Letter from Galileo Galilei
RenÚ Descartes Selection: Meditations
Quotations from John Comenius
Timeline: From 1400 to 1800
Map: Europe 1700
August Comte's Calendar
Benedict Spinoza's Emotions
David Hume and Immanuel Kant
The Rights of Man
The Rights of Woman
Part Three: The 1800's
Timeline: The 1800s
Map: Europe 1815
Early Medicine and Physiology
The Hippocratic Oath
A Brief History of Psychopharmacology
Charles Darwin and Evolution
Charles Darwin Selection: Descent of Man
John, Mary, and the Komodo Dragon
The Romantic Philosophers
The Quotable Friedrich Nietzsche
The Beginnings of Psychology
Sir Francis Galton Selection: Hereditary Talent....
The History of Statistics
Wilhelm Wundt and William James
William James Selection: Consciousness
Part Four: The 1900's
Timeline: The 1900s
Map: Europe 1914
Sigmund Freud and Psychoanalysis
Sigmund Freud Selection: The Unconscious
B. F. Skinner Selection
Walt Whitman There was a Child...
Kurt K÷hler Selection: Gestalt Psychology Today
Carl Rogers Selection: The Organization of Personality
James Joyce Selection: A Portrait...
Romance: A Partial Analysis
Modern Medicine and Physiology
A Brief History of the Lobotomy
The Cognitive Movement
In addition to the primary sources mentioned within the text itself, I am indebted to several secondary sources as well:
Will and Ariel Durant's The Story of Civilization.
B. R. Hergenhahn's An Introduction
to the History of Psychology.
The Encyclopedia Britannica (various editions).
Robert Audi's (editor) The
Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy.
William Sahakian's History of Philosophy.
Colin Mcevedy's Penguin
Atlas of (Ancient/Medieval/Modern) History.
Kinder and Hildemann's Anchor Atlas of
My own Personality Theories e-text.
All errors are, of course, mine, and I would be indebted to any alert readers for corrections, especially of factual material.
Return to my homepage