Each era that contributed to psychology is important but today I will discuss the effect the Renaissance had on psychology. The Renaissance period was believed to be from 1450 -1600. The meaning to Renaissances is “rebirth” and during this time is when there was an increasingly interest in human beings, which was considered humanism (Hergenhahn, 2009).This period is known as the beginning of modern science and philosophy (Hergenhahn, 2009).There were many things that had set a foundation for the Renaissance and its effect it had on psychology since the 12th Century. One example being that the early psychology reflected on the study of the soul but modern psychology reflected more on the study of functions of the brain (Hergehahn, 2009). None the less, the Renaissance period was very important in providing treatment to the mentally ill so many mental hospitals were built during this period (Hergehahn, 2009). During this time there were several philosophers who predominantly express the indication of humanism. Petrarch Francesco was one of them and he is considered the father of Renaissance and he believed that people religious associations should not get studied but the fact that they are human beings. His view on human potential made a path for many artistic and legendary accomplishments that branded the Renaissance (Hergenhahn, 2009). It was believed that the Renaissance exposed the good and bad of humanity and this is when modern science and philosophy emerged. This was a time when specialists such as Thomas Aquinas began to study the mind (Schuttleworth, 2008). He was an influential scholar that presented his beliefs about the mind and how it was divided into three faculties, organic, sensory and rational (Schuttleworth, 2008). The Renaissance period was also the time when Descartes introduced the mind-body relationship and studied the phenomena of the mind which was another item that was significant to psychology (Hergenhahn, 2009).
Shuttleworth, M. (2008) Psychology in the Middle Ages. Retrieved from http://explorable.com/middle-age-psychology-thomas-aquinas
Hergenhahn, B. R. (2009). An Introduction to the History of Psychology. Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?id=iZwXnfYAo3oC&pg=PA335&lpg=PA335&dq=the+renaissance+period+and+psychology&source=bl&ots=cAiSnclKTj&sig=q3Qq7RCc2u3vM5Tj-dcVp2jQQUQ&hl=en&sa=X&ei=pyGgUdDGJsH-iwKDiYH4CA&ved=0CDQQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=renaissance%20&f=false
One of Thorndike's major offerings to Psychology was his work with animals. He is known for thoroughly researching animals and creating "puzzle boxes" (Reinemeyer, 1999). Thorndike was solely against mentalism so he criticized the ‘‘despised theory.’’ This theory stated that the animal’s reason was evident and the proof was in observing them (Malone, 2009). Thorndike studied learning in animals and he invented the puzzle box to experiment and test the laws of learning (McLeod, 2007). His experiment consisted of cats, dogs, and chicks. He put the cat or dog in his puzzle box or a chick in a simple maze and he timed how long it took for the animals to escape.
When he put the cat in his box and timed them he noticed that after consecutive trials the cats would adopt this behavior and escape faster (McLeod, 2007). He suggested that the learning curves did not rapidly improve, but the amount of time the cat stayed in the box decreased (Reiniemeyer, 1999). The cat did not grasp the concept of the steps it had to take to get free, but the link among the animal's state and the reaction that it gave to set it free was engraved. Those observations made Thorndike realize that certain responses to stimuli become associated with or detached from one another in accordance to his law of effect (Reinimeyer, 1999). His law of effect suggested that behavior that is followed by satisfaction will more than likely get repeated. On the contrary, if uneasiness is followed by the...
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