Modernizing the Mind: Psychological Knowledge and the Remaking of Society

Greenwood Publishing Group, 2002 - 279 páginas

When did fidgety children begin to suffer from attention deficit disorder? How did frightened people come to be called paranoid? Why are we considered to have emotional intelligence and not simply caring personalities?

While psychological knowledge began in the relative isolation of laboratories and universities, it has since permeated various professions, institutions, and everyday life. Society and our conceptions of self have fundamentally changed with psychology's modernization of the mind. Ward provides a social and cultural history of the spread of psychological knowledge, assessing the way this proliferation has reconfigured society's meaning, and the way people view themselves and others.

Using ideas borrowed from science and technology studies, the sociology of culture, and the sociology of organizations, Ward examines how American psychology established itself as the central purveyor of truth about the mind and self in the 20th century. He examines how psychology has essentially become common knowledge, and his innovative account offers a novel theory about the growth and influence of numerous different knowledge forms.


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Knowledge Networks and the Organization of Society
The Struggle to Construct and Defend the New Psychology
The Alliance of Psychology and Education
Psychology and the Modernization of Parenting
The Materialization of Psychological Ideas
6 A Séance or a Science? Psychology and Its Publics
7 Psychological Codes of Civility and the Practice of Everyday Life
Issues Healing Closure and the Psychotherapeutic Self
The Psychologization of the United States
A Few Important Dates in the History of American Psychology
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STEVEN C. WARD is Associate Professor of Sociology at Western Connecticut State University. He is the author of Reconfiguring Truth: Postmodernism, Science Studies and the Search for a New Model of Knowledge (1996).

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