History and Systems of Psychology, Spring 2005
The Wright Institute, Berkeley, California

School phone: 510-548-9716

Professor: Jeffrey S. Kaye, Ph.D.   Email: jsk@drjeffkaye.com
Office Phone: 415-362-8262 (Office hours or consultation by appointment)

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Course Syllabus
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Class begins Monday, April 11, 9:00am to 12:00pm

Course Description

The course examines the history of psychology, with an emphasis on historical process and context, and an understanding that history of psychology is a field of study, and not only a narrative.

We will use varying methodological approaches to the understanding of psychology and its diverse systems and research programs. Emphasis will be on the intellectual history of psychological enquiry. We will explore how the primary themes of idealism and materialism have affected the history of our field, from the origins of scientific psychology (out of the very different disciplines of physiology, medicine, and philosophy/epistemology), to the rise of psychodynamic psychology and today’s biopsychology.

Along the way, we will consider the impact of Darwinism; the part played in the development of psychological thinking, system-making, and institutions by important world events, such as the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, and the wars of the 20th century; the social history of psychology, as well as singular historical figures, e.g. Locke, Gall, Helmholtz, James, Freud, Jung, Erikson, Klein, etc. Finally, we will look at modern critiques and understandings of both the history of our field, and of contemporary institutional and intellectual trends.

Instruction and Grading

The primary mode of instruction will be through readings and seminar discussion. The course grade will be based on class participation and one class presentation.


Jeffrey Kaye has an honors B.A. in History from the University of California, Berkeley, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Psychology from The Wright Institute. He has lectured on various topics, including adult development, dynamic psychotherapy with torture victims, Darwinism, and psychobiography. A former adjunct faculty member at Alliant University/California School of Professional Psychology, Dr. Kaye is a member of Division 26, History of Psychology, of the APA. He works as a clinician with Survivors International, and has a private clinical practice in San Francisco, CA.






Page last updated: 04/11/2005