Watson Christopher D. John Broadus Watson is widely regarded as having been the founder of the school of behaviorism, which dominated much of North American psychology between and The central tenets of behaviorism -- 1 that scientific psychology must focus on the relationship between environmental contingencies and behavior, rather than on the presumed contents of consciousness, and 2 that the principles governing behavior of humans and other animals are essentially identical -- can be found in the works of many thinkers even centuries earlier see O'Donnell, for a fine analysis of the events in the decades immediately preceding Watson's arrival. The article presented here, however, "Psychology as the behaviorist views it," was the first manifesto of the behaviorist movement, and thus ranks as one of the most influential psychological papers of all time.
The quote in the essay title complains that as a theory of the mental, functionalism is no better than behaviorism. The suggestion is that functionalism is just as deficient in some measure as behaviorism, and thus no reason to prefer functionalism over behaviorism.
One way to address this complaint would be to examine all the claims and criticisms of some version of each theory and evaluate whether functionalism scores better overall as a theory of the mental.
That, however, would take far too long for an essay of this sort. So I will arbitrarily choose one particular area of contrast between the two theories, and presume that the essay's title complaint is that neither functionalism nor behaviourism provides an adequate explanation for the feel of subjective experience -- the "qualia" of consciousness.
I will conclude that in this, however, the title quote is wrong. Functionalism, unlike behaviorism, can provide an adequate explanation for the subjective experience of the mental. Behaviorism 1 Broadly speaking, behaviorism is a psychological doctrine that demands behavioral evidence for any psychological theory.
InSellars commented that someone qualifies as a behaviorist if they maintain "hypotheses about psychological events in terms of behavioral criteria" 2. Such a doctrine holds that there is no knowable difference between states of mind unless there is a demonstrable difference in the behavior associated with each state.
The historical basis of behaviorism is the philosophical movement of Logical Positivism 3 dominant in the early third of the 20th Century. Logical positivism argued that the meaning of statements used in science should be understood in empirical terms -- in terms of observations that verify their truth 4.
Behaviorism adapted this philosophy to claim that mental concepts must refer to empirically observable behavioral tendencies, and so can and should be translated into behavioral terms. Over the years, however, behaviorism has split into three rough families of argument.
Behavior thus can be understood without reference to mental events or to mental processes. As a "theory of the mental," therefore, it treats the mind as a unit black box, knowable only via its externally observable behavior. Such mental concepts as are entertained are treated as "theoretical fictions".
A "theoretical fiction" is a computational or imagery device proposed by a theory with no pretense that the device is real. An instrumentalist in the philosophy of science, for example, will regard the notions of electrons and quarks as theoretical fictions.
As a "theory of the mental", therefore, it also treats the mind as a unit black box, but does not permit mental concepts even as "theoretical fictions". Analytic Behaviorism was the "orthodox" theory of the mental from about the 's to the dawn of computational cognitive science in the 's 6.
Given the context of this essay, I will hereafter assume that the behaviorism referenced in the essay title is intended to refer to Analytical Behaviorism, and disregard the others. Analytic Behaviorism, as a theory of the mental, has no place for a representation of the environment as a determinant of behavior.
To many critics of behaviorism, the fact that the environment and one's learning history is represented internally by the subject seems to be more of a behavioral determinant than the subject's reinforcement history. How a subject sees classifies, interprets, represents a stimulus appears more germane to the behavior elicited, than just the bare stimulus history.
Critics sometimes argue this point through the concept of "qualia". Some experiences, it is argued, have characteristic "qualia" or presentationally immediate phenomenal qualities of experience. Being in pain, for example, does not just involve the appropriate behavioral dispositions, it also involves so the argument goes a particular sort of "what it is like" 7 to experience pain.
Behaviorism must deny the reality of qualia, and the possibility of internal representations that can modify behavioral dispositions.
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A philosophical zombie 8 is a hypothetical being that is indistinguishable from a normal human being except in that it lacks conscious experience, or qualia. To analytic behaviorism, since there is no place for internal representations and denies the existence of quails, we are all philosophical zombies.
This seems to be wrong. If mental states are identical with behavioural dispositions, as behaviourism holds, then any two people with the same behavioural dispositions will be in the same mental states.
There do seem, however, to be circumstances in where two different mental states can be associated with identical behavioural dispositions, or the same mental state with two different behavioral dispositions.“Generations of psychologists, reared in a post-Watsonian discipline that defined itself as the “science of behavior”, were taught that Watson was the father of behaviorism and that February 24, was the day on which modern behaviorism was born” (Wozniak, ).
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(). Radical Behaviorism. the Philosophy and the Science - Download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or view presentation slides online. The quote in the essay title complains that as a theory of the mental, functionalism is no better than behaviorism. The suggestion is that functionalism is just as deficient in some measure as behaviorism, and thus no reason to prefer functionalism over behaviorism.
Skinners Operant Behaviour Limited Time Offer at Lots of caninariojana.com!!! We have made a special deal with a well known Professional Research Paper company to offer you up to 15 professional research papers per month for just $ Goals for the Psy Experimental Analysis of Behavior: Tests will be take home essay tests, and will require you to synthesize and develop your own responses to the class material.
Lecture 1: Behaviorism. 1/ Historical underpinnings and some research methods.