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September 19, 1942

Foundations for a Science of Personality

Author Affiliations

By Andras Angyal, M.D., Ph.D., Resident Director of Research Worcester State Hospital, Worcester, Mass. Cloth. Price, $2.25. Pp. 398, with 12 illustrations. New York: Commonwealth Fund: London: Oxford University Press, 1941.

JAMA. 1942;120(3):246-247. doi:10.1001/jama.1942.02830380078044

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There are innumerable theories of mental functions. Some, as the gestalt theory, have to do with the integration of various thought processes; others, such as psychobiology, have to do with the integration of various fields of knowledge about the mind. Dr. Angyal makes an attempt to fuse as many of these as possible into a single, scientific whole. Unfortunately his approach to the subject is rather more philosophic than scientific. He considers that the organism in its environment is a unitary process, not a fusion of environmental processes and basic internal processes, as some of the older psychologists have postulated. He emphasizes the fact that the organism tends to draw as much out of the environment as possible into the personality and to project the personality on to the life about it. Most of the ideas in the book are not new. Some psychiatrists may be unaware of the holistic

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