Spirits, Science and the Mind: The Journal ‘Psychische Studien’ (1874-1925)

Blog post moved to http://www.forbiddenhistories.com/?p=435.

About Sommer_HPS

Dr. Andreas Sommer, historian of the human sciences at Cambridge University, UK. View all posts by Sommer_HPS

3 responses to “Spirits, Science and the Mind: The Journal ‘Psychische Studien’ (1874-1925)

  • alanborky

    “while the journal is still sometimes referred to as a spiritualist magazine…it was, on the contrary, fairly pluralistic in outlook.”

    The EdgeScience journal springs t’mind as a latterday equivalent where the idea seems t’be not t’hunt down an’ pulverize threat’ning ideas/their exponents but expand the data base o’ options an’ possibilities.

    Ditto Rumi’s “The truth lies not in this or that” one inf’rence o’ which’s I suggest the truth may actu’ly lie in this AND that somethin’ also possibly implied by the Taoist yinyang symbol where t’select one half o’ the design over the other’s t’destroy it.

    “showing that unorthodox scientific activities were not nearly as exceptional (or reactionary) as popular standard accounts would have it…Psychische Studien calls into question traditional claims of a ‘disenchantment of science’, which has been supposed to characterise modernity more than any other feature.”

    This’s why this blog’s been an absolute revelation t’me Andreas because each time I read or reread one o’ these pieces I’m assailed by legions of deeply familiar often highly famous names many o’ whom textbooks encyclopedias an’ especially Wikipedia’ve given me little or no reason t’suspect of supposedly mindless paranormal pursuits.

    But even in the case o’ those I’d been alerted to in the Seventies by the likes o’ Colin Wilson or Jacob Bronowski [who if memory serves said o’ Newton “I want you t’see what a truly desperate individual he was” makin’ him sound like a child abusin’ serial killer] I’d been left with the abiding impression each of ’em’d toiled or dabbled in seedy masturbatory isolation nearly or completely ignorant o’ each other whereas as you’ve revealed there were actu’ly huge numbers o’ these guys often workin’ in highly organised almost masonic style groups as part of an ongoin’ effort t’ensure such ideas an’ their implications weren’t buried if not completely lost in the rush t’get *conventional* psychology accepted as *conventional* science.

  • Renaud Evrard

    In France, Dr Timothée Puel published the “Revue de psychologie expérimentale” (Journal of experimental psychology), also beginning in 1874. It was fully inspired by Psychische Studien. In fact, Puel has correspondances with Aksakov and the rights to copy some articles of the German journal. Result? Completely overlooked by historians!

  • Giant’s Shoulders #67 | Early Modern Medicine

    […] birth of German professionalised psychology.  Andreas Sommers has been investigating the journal  Psychische Studien and the beginning of psychology research. Finally Providentia blog has a biography of the ‘Electric Messiah’ John Murray Spear […]

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