Pace Institute Epochs History Discussion

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Pace Institute Epochs History Discussion

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Can you help me understand this Psychology question?


Messias (2014) outlined five epochs in the history of psychology.  Consider the progression of these epochs and the factors that marked the  end of one epoch and the beginning of the next. Which epoch do you  believe to be the most significantly different from the one immediately  prior? Why? How does this difference advance the field of psychology?  Explain.


History of psychiatry can provide us with a map of the evolution of the practice and identify its major figures. A historiometric approach was taken to available history of psychiatry texts and a historical dictionary. Reliability was tested against data from the journal History of Psychiatry. Those cited in all historical accounts are characterized as major figures, while those cited in at least 60% of the sources are considered significant figures. An index of eminence is calculated for each significant figure. The Cronbach’s alpha was .89. Seventy-four significant figures were identified, of which eighteen are considered major figures. Among these, Freud, Pinel, and Kraepelin have the highest eminence – respectively. Pinel, Freud, and Kraepelin represent key moments in three epochs in the history of psychiatry: the asylum era, the first biological psychiatry, and the psychoanalytical period, respectively. The most recent historical periods are not well represented yet in histories of psychiatry. Go to: Introduction The study of history of psychiatry can not only demonstrate how far we’ve come in the care of those with mental disorders, but also how we got to the present state of the field as well as who was responsible for some of its main contributions. As such, the history of psychiatry has been studied under many different lights and has been marked by significant disagreement on its overall arch. At times, some historical accounts tell the story of a benign progress towards a more humane and sound way to care for those with mental disorders – see the classic books by Gregory Zilboorg (Zilboorg and Henry 1941) and Franz Alexander (Alexander and Selesnick 1966), both psychiatrists – while in other accounts psychiatry can been seen as part of a major societal structure to control behavior – see the work by the French philosopher and historian Michel Foucault (Foucault 1973). Given this state of conflicting views, and strong opinions, is there a way to try to organize the main contributions to psychiatric practice and generate a list of significant figures one can use to guide students and residents in understanding the historical roots and paths that has shaped the way we practice today? Can we use a quantitative method to identify, and rank, those eminent figures in the history of psychiatry? In his book Human Accomplishment: The Pursuit of Excellence in Arts and Sciences (Murray 2003), scholar Charles Murray overviews the main contributions to human endeavors in the arts and sciences, and uses a modified historiometric technique, first proposed in Francis Galton’s 1869 book Hereditary Genius, to measure eminence within the respective fields of human activity. The historiometric approach has evolved over time and provides a way to quantify historical contributions (Simonton 1984) and has been used in a variety of topics from music (Simonton 1998), to research productivity (Nader, Pietschnig et al. 2012), to leadership (Ligon, Harris et al. 2012). With the proper adjustments, proceeding with caution, and being aware of the limitations of this approach, it is possible to use major reference works to first, identify major and significant figures across different areas of human activities, and second, estimate the relative impact of these figures within that field throughout history. These specific ranks and scores are calculated to stimulate interesting discussion and are not meant to be a precise measure of such subjective construct as eminence. Using this historiometric approach, the present study aims to identify major and significant figures in the history of psychiatry and estimate their respective eminence in its evolution. Go to: Methods Sources: To be included in the analysis a source needed to be a general history of psychiatry, thus excluding those related to the history of psychiatry in specific locations (Gabriel 1997), or subspecialties, like the history of psychopharmacology (Healy 2002) or the history of psychoanalysis (Ellenberger 1970). Sources were also excluded if they restricted their narrative to a specific time period, like the Victorian Age (Scull 1981) or imperial Germany (Engstrom 2003). As such, the following nine narratives were included, listed in chronological order of publication: “A History of Medical Psychology” by Gregory Zilboorg, published in 1941 (Zilboorg and Henry 1941); “A History of Psychiatry” by Jerome Schneck, published in 1960 (Schneck 1960); “The History of Psychiatry” by Franz Alexander and Sheldon Selesnick, published in 1966 (Alexander and Selesnick 1966); “A Short History of Psychiatry” by Erwin Ackerknecht, second edition, published in 1968 (Ackerknecht 1968); “World History of Psychiatry” by John Howells, published in 1975 (Howells 1975); “Discovering the History of Psychiatry” by Mark Micale and Roy Porter, published in 1994 (Micale and Porter 1994); “A History of Psychiatry: From the Era of the Asylum to the Age of Prozac” by Edward Shorter, published in 1997 (Shorter 1997); “Madness, a brief history” by Roy Porter, published in 2002 (Porter 2002); “History of Psychiatry and Medical Psychology” by Edwin Wallace and John Gach, published in 2008 (Wallace and Gach 2008). Anyone with an individual biographical entry in the Historical Dictionary of Psychiatry (Shorter 2005) was also included in the parent list. The number of citations in the journal History of Psychiatry for each figure was also surveyed for reliability testing. A correlation matrix on the number of citations across these ten sources, along with a Cronbach’s alpha, for reliability measures are calculated. Significant figures: an initial parent population is derived by examining the index of each identified source and listing each name, as well as those having an individual biographical entry in the historical dictionary of psychiatry. In order to be categorized as a significant figure a person had to be named in over 50% (six or more) of sources. Major figures are those considered crucial to understanding the development of psychiatry. We used the most conservative measure to identify major figures, i.e. in order to be considered a major figure a person had to be mentioned in all included sources. Measuring eminence: for the general narratives in history of psychiatry, the index was consulted and the number of pages for each figure entered; that number was then divided by the number of pages in the source as a weighting procedure. So, Freud is cited in 23 pages in Schneck’s book that has 196 pages, yielding a score of .117 – which may be interpreted as 11.7% of the book. The narratives were summed into one index score. Then the top index score, in this case Freud, was converted into 100 and all other scores were divided by Freud’s crude index score and multiplied by 100. That final percent score is the eminence score calculated for each significant figure. Reliability measures: For the journal History of Psychiatry, electronic searches were conducted with the complete name of each figure – as listed in the roster – and the number of papers listed was used as the base for the eminence estimation for reliability testing; for example, in the journal Pinel returned 155 results, Freud returned 144, and Kraepelin 131. Go to: Results The parent population, those cited multiple times in the sources, included 194 individuals. A correlation matrix for the index scores was calculated and is presented in table 1, along with the correlation with the number of citations in the journal History of Psychiatry. The correlations ranged from .38 (Alexander/Howells) to .77 (Ackernecht/Zilboorg). The Cronbach’s alpha for the included nine sources was .89 suggesting that the items have relatively high internal consistency. Two sources were not available in hard copies (Howells 1975, Micale and Porter 1994) and the eminence score was calculated using the Google Books web-based tool and counting how many pages each name retrieved – to test the reliability of this method one hardcopy source was randomly chosen to be checked against this technic yielding a correlation coefficient of .71, p