Verbal Behavior

Verbal Behavior

Verbal Behavior

Verbal Behavior

Excerpt

It has taken a long time to write this book. A classification of verbal responses in an early version of Part II was completed in the summer Of 1934. A few supporting experiments were then carried out with the Verbal Summator, and statistical analyses were made of several literary works, of data from word-association experiments, and of guessing behavior. All this material was used in courses on Literary and Verbal Behavior at the University of Minnesota in the late thirties, at Harvard University in the summer of 1938, and at the University of Chicago in the summer of 1939. A manuscript of the present scope was to have been completed under a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1941, but the war intervened. The Fellowship was resumed in 1944-45 and a version nearly completed. It was the basis of a course on Verbal Behavior at Columbia University in the summer of 1947, stenographic notes of which were circulated by Dr. Ralph Hefferlein in mimeographed form the following year.

In the fall of 1947 material was extracted from the manuscript for the William James Lectures at Harvard University, several hundred mimeographed copies of which have since been circulated. In preparing these lectures it was found that the manuscript had begun to take on the character of a review of the literature and that the central theme was becoming obscure. In completing the manuscript for publication, therefore, summaries of the literature were deleted. Completion of the final manuscript was postponed in favor of a general book on human behavior (Science and Human Behavior) which would provide a ready reference on matters not essentially verbal. The present version is more than twice as long as the James Lectures and contains many changes made to conform with recent progress in the experimental analysis of behavior, human and otherwise. With the exception of the last two chapters, it was written during the spring term of 1955 at Putney, Vermont.

The work has been generously supported by the Society of Fellows of Harvard University (a three-year fellowship), the University of Minnesota (a one-half year sabbatical leave), the Guggenheim Foun dation . . .

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