History of Psychology-John Locke and John Mill

Topics: René Descartes, Empiricism, Mind Pages: 3 (782 words) Published: December 19, 2010
A History of Psychology
Psychology as a recognized science is a fairly new revelation, falling into favoritism only within the past century. Philosophy bears the roots of psychology, and philosophers have been pondering the inner workings of the mind and body for many centuries before psychology came in to favor. One of the key philosophers crucial in the development of psychology in to a formal discipline was Descartes. Their writings influenced more modern Western philosophers such as John Locke and John Mill. From this point, psychology grew into the science it is now recognized as. The Philosophers

The 17th century is the cornerstone of philosophy evolving into psychology. René Descartes (1596-1650) is often considered to be the inspiration for and credited to be the father of our modern philosophy, and psychology. He is most famously quoted for “I think, therefore I am” (Descartes, 2006). A human’s ability to reason is the only to find truth. Descartes would also not accept anything to be truth unless there was no discernable reason for doubt. “The only way to get to the certainty of truth is to arrive at oneself, relying on the clear use of one’s own reasoning powers” (Goodwin, 2008, p.33). Disenchanted with the philosophy he was taught, Descartes found nothing in his learning that could not be left to question. He was said to only believe as truth what could not be doubted and Descartes pursued to find the knowledge he could find within himself (Goodwin, 2008). Descartes was a rationalist and dualist, making him firm believer in the mind and body being two completely separate entities. His beliefs on this are debatable in philosophy and psychology and have been so in the centuries following his life. Philosophers and psychologists to this day are still trying to find the connection between the mind and the body. Western Influences

John Locke
John Locke was a 17th century British philosopher who is credited with being the founder of Empiricism, the...

References: Descartes, Rene (2006). A discourse on method/ by Rene Descartes [Kindle DX version]. Retrieved from Amazon.com
Goodwin, C.J. (2008). A history of modern psychology [3rd ed.].
Mill, John S. (2008). On liberty/ by John Stuart Mill [Kindle DX version]. Retrieved from Amazon.com
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