A Hundred Years of Psychology, 1833-1933

By J. C. Flugel | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XVI
CONCLUSION--THE PRESENT POSITION OF PSYCHOLOGY

THE history of our last period is now completed--and with it our whole story. It is clear that, though it is still only at the beginning of its labours, psychology has now, at the end of the first third of the twentieth century--very definitely arrived. It has made for itself a place, though still a humble one, in the hierarchy of sciences. It has a few really outstanding achievements to its credit and, apart from these, it has made some degree of progress over a wide front. Most important of all perhaps, it has succeeded in introducing the psychological point of view into the consideration of many questions--both practical and theoretical --which had never been contemplated from this point of view before. We have seen in our last chapters some of the consequences that have followed the adoption of the new standpoint in sociology, in education and in industry-- consequences that are obviously of the greatest importance for human efficiency and happiness. The political, theological, ethical or economic points of view have for too long enjoyed exclusive rights in these fields; it is becoming more and more evident that they are in urgent need of supplementation by psychology. If psychology is the science of human behaviour, then it must surely be consulted in all problems in which human behaviour is an important factor of the total situation. And when it is consulted, we usually find that it has valuable advice to give--advice which in the last resort may well be essential to the progress or (as we

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