PSYC1110 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Natural Selection, Wilhelm Wundt
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Psychology September 3 Lecture 2
Late 19th century: Psychology was on of the last scientific studies to emerge. It came about due to
advances in physiological studies, Dawin’s theory of natural selection/evolution, and age-old
curiosity regarding human nature.
-Germany: Herlmholtz, Nuller, Fechner, Ebbinghans, Wundt
-U.S: William James, Thorndike
Mind/Body split: The mind cannot be measured because free will cannot be experimentally
Dualism: i.e the legal system: committing murder out of self-defense vs planned.
Heredity (Nature vs. Nurture)
Thomas Malthus (1766-1834): Population grows exponentially and there will always be poverty
as people “eat up” the wealth and resources. There will always be competition for survival.
Darwin: Natural selection; there is not plan for life it is simply random variation.
-1832-1836: Darwin wrote Origin of Species based on his voyage on the Beagle.
oSpecies were not fixed and differences reflected environmental conditions.
-There must be some unit of inheritance passed on that influences phenotypic (physical)
traits. These traits are selected for because they are better fitted for the environment.