Psychology, General and Applied

By Hugo Münsterberg | Go to book overview

PART I. PRINCIPLES OF APPLIED PSYCHOLOGY

CHAPTER XXVII
THE AIM OF PRACTICAL PSYCHOLOGY

The Present Situation of Practical Psychology .--We take a narrow view of scientific knowledge if we claim that it has a right to exist only when it can serve our practical interests and can be applied to the tasks of life. Truth must be respected as valuable in itself. Like beauty, it fulfills an ideal demand, and we ought to devote ourselves to the discovery of truth without asking how far the truth can be used to bake our daily bread. But our view is certainly no less narrow, if we take the opposite stand and are indifferent to the practical usefulness of our scientific results. The admirable eagerness to contribute to and to spread theoretical knowledge has often led to a certain unwillingness to link theoretical psychology with the practical needs of the community. Some have the feeling that psychology loses its dignity when it becomes a handmaid of routine life.

This feeling can be the more easily understood as every community is swarming with pseudo-psychologists who, in a dilettantic manner, apply a self-made popular psychology to the ills of society. There always were quacks, of all shades of sincerity, who tried to cure diseases by mental influences without any understanding of the laws of the mind. The scientists naturally shrunk from contact with the charlatan and the sensation seeker. The popular mind

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Psychology, General and Applied
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Preface vii
  • Contents ix
  • Introduction. the Aims Of Psychology 1
  • Chapter II - The Realm of Psychology 7
  • Book I. Causal Psychology 19
  • Part I. Principles of Causal Psychology 21
  • Part Ii. the Individual Processes 59
  • Part Iii. the Social Group 224
  • Book Ii. Purposive Psychology 283
  • Part I. Principles of Purposive Psychology 285
  • Part Ii. the Individual Experiences 310
  • Part Iii. the Social Experiences 329
  • Book Iii. Applied Psychology 339
  • Part I. Principles of Applied Psychology 341
  • Part Ii. the Psychotechnical Sciences 365
  • Bibliography 471
  • Index 483
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