The World of Touch

The World of Touch

The World of Touch

The World of Touch

Synopsis

For the first time, David Katz's classic monograph The World of Touch has been translated into English. Regarded as one of the premiere experimental psychologists, Katz vigorously opposed the atomism and "tachistoscopic" mentality typical of the sensory psychology of his day.

In The World of Touch, Katz sought to dispel the invidious distinction between the supposedly higher (e.g., vision, audition) and lower (e.g., touch) senses. To help touch regain its original prominence in the field, Katz demonstrated, through very simple, yet creative experiments, how fascinating the abilities of touch are, and how valuable the tactual stimulus can be in specifying objects, surfaces, substances, and events. In addition, Katz emphasized the importance of higher-order invariants in the perception of objects, and the holistic quality of perception in time as well as space.

Excerpt

The goal of this translation was to put David Katz Der Aufbau der Tastwelt (The World of Touch) into as natural and correct a form of modern American English as possible. To accomplish that objective, Katz long German sentences were sometimes divided into several English sentences, or somewhat condensed into more compact English form, as long as the intended meaning was thereby preserved. Materials inserted into the text for clarification, etc., are set off by brackets. More extended comments on the text are provided before each chapter or division, and in the Editor's Introduction. Katz previous publications in English (e.g., Katz, 1930, 1935) provided useful guides on how to translate particular words and phrases. I deviated from Katz (1935), however, by generally translating Materialstruktur as "texture," rather than "material structure."

Several persons made notable contributions to the present work. Thomas G. R. Bower gave the initial impetus to the project when he suggested that I prepare an English summary of Tastwelt (Krueger, 1970, 1982) for his graduate seminar in perception at Harvard University. Dale S. Cunningham assisted in the preparation of a preliminary version of the translation, and he provided the English translations for the Greek and Latin terms and phrases that Katz used. Helpful comments were provided by the late Francis P. Hardesty on the preliminary version of the translation, and by Morton A. Heller and Leann Stadtlander on the penultimate version. Ms. Stadtlander also prepared the author and subject indexes; the latter was . . .

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