The Book Forum
January 4, 1964

The Great Psychologists from Aristotle to Freud

Author Affiliations

By Robert I. Watson. 572 pp. $7.50. J. B. Lippincott, E Washington Sq, Philadelphia 5, 1963

JAMA. 1964;187(1):70. doi:10.1001/jama.1964.03060140076040

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The educated physician should have more than a nodding acquaintance with the great thought of the past, and thinkers who have contributed to our understanding of the mind are well worth study. A survey of the great psychologists, from Aristotle to Freud, might have been a fascinating and rewarding volume that could greatly enlarge our insights.

Unfortunately, this book leaves much to be desired. When the author is dealing with the very recent past, discussing such men as James, Hall, Titchener, Watson, Wertheimer, and Freud, there is a reasonable effectiveness. However, when the earlier writers are discussed —from Thales and Hippocrates up through the early 19th century, the result is disappointing.

The author treats ancient periods from the viewpoint of modern knowledge, instead of trying to enter into the concepts of the times. In no way does he make vivid the environment and culture of historical eras, nor does he

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