u02d2 Historical Context for Schools of Thought.docx - u02d2 Historical Context for Schools of Thought Choose one school of thought from the chapters

u02d2 Historical Context for Schools of Thought.docx -...

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u02d2 Historical Context for Schools of Thought Choose one school of thought from the chapters you reviewed for this unit on physiology, experimental psychology, voluntarism, structuralism, functionalism, and Gestalt psychology (not Gestalt therapy). What was happening in the world at that time that contributed to the rise of the school of thought or aligned with its principles and values? How did the emerging school of thought fit with people's way of viewing the world, and their culture, at that time in history? Did the new school of thought modify society in any way? Explain your ideas clearly, and use examples or illustrations to make your points. Include at least two relevant peer-reviewed articles that support your thoughts in your post. Gestalt psychology is a school of thought that looks at the human mind and behavior as a whole. When trying to make sense of the world around us, Gestalt psychology suggests that we do not simply focus on every small component. Instead, our minds tend to perceive objects as part of a greater whole and as elements of more complex systems. This school of psychology played a major role in the modern development of the study of human sensation and perception. A Brief History of Gestalt Psychology Originating in the work of Max Wertheimer, Gestalt psychology formed partially as a response to the structuralism of Wilhelm Wundt. While Wundt was interested in breaking down psychological matters into their smallest possible part, the Gestalt psychologists were instead interested in looking at the totaling mind and behavior. The guiding principle behind the Gestalt movement was that the whole was greater than the sum of its parts.
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The development of this area of psychology was influenced by a number of thinkers, including Immanuel Kant, Ernst Mach, and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The development of Gestalt psychology was influenced in part by Wertheimer's observations one day at a train station. He purchased a toy stroboscope which displayed pictures in a rapid sequence to mimic the appearing movement. He later proposed the concept of the Phi phenomenon in which flashing lights in sequence can lead to what is known as apparent motion. In other words, we perceive movement where there is none. Movies are one example of apparent motion. Through a sequence of still frames, the illusion of movement is created. "The fundamental "formula" of Gestalt theory might be expressed in this way,” Max Wertheimer wrote. "There are wholes, the behavior of which is not determined by that of their individual elements, but where the part-processes are themselves determined by the intrinsic nature of the whole. It is the hope of Gestalt theory to determine the nature of such wholes" (1924). Major Gestalt Psychologists Max Wertheimer Kurt Koffka Wolfgang Kohler Gestalt Laws of Perceptual Organization Have you ever noticed how a series of flashing lights often appears to be moving, such as neon signs or strands of Christmas lights? According to Gestalt psychology, this apparent movement happens because
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  • Fall '09
  • DR.KAREN MILLER

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