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Voluntarism and Introspection

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1 Voluntarism and Introspection
Wundt Voluntarism and Introspection

2 Voluntarism, not volunteerism
Voluntarism: the power of the will to organize the mind’s content into higher-level thought processes. An associationist model, from simple elements to larger compounds, but it does not simply progress mechanically, the will has an organizing effect.

3 The contents of the mind
Basic immediate experience (ex: the experience of “redness” or “discomfort”) Wundt wanted to catalog all possible basic immediate experiences, and form a “periodical table of elements” as chemistry did. The way to observe consciousness is through the method of introspection.

4 The method of introspection
Introspection or internal perception (intro = inside, spectare: looking) Observation of simple processes under very careful conditions that can be replicated Observers were extensively trained (10,000 observations before they were considered trained)

5 The Method of mental Chronometry
Invented by Donders Makes use of reaction time The more complex mental operation takes more time. Go and try this on Dr Likely's page

6 Elements of conscious experience
Sensations: the result of the stimulation of a sense organ. Classified by: Intensity, duration, sense modality Feelings: the affective tone of a sensation

7 Sensations (1) General sense: Sound Smell and taste
Pressure, heat, cold Sound Simple noise, simple tone Smell and taste Smell: hard to categorize Taste: sour, sweet, bitter, salty

8 Sensations (2) Light Achromatic (black/white) Chromatic (colors)
Dimensions: tone, saturation, brightness

9 Feelings Pleasant /unpleasant Excitement/depression Tension/relaxation

10 Psychical compounds Ideas (composed of several sensations)
Composite feelings (several feelings mixed together) Emotions (typical form in which affective processes occur). They have a temporal quality: beginning, middle, end. Volitions (changes in ideas and feelings that bring an emotion to a close)

11 General consciousness
Interconnects the psychical compounds When connections are broken, unconsciousness or sleep results The process of synthesis is creative, growth oriented, and leading toward the development of opposites

12 The field of consciousness
Everything that is in the field of consciousness at one time. Includes: What is subject to apperception, and is perceived clearly What is subject to Apprehension, and is not seen clearly --background material, existing as a potential for apperception.

13 Apperception Apperception is a volitional process, I.e. it has to do with the will. It is the will that directs the attention, is at the basis of the creative synthesis that leads to the construction of knowledge

14 Apperception and clinical psychology
Projective tests such as the Rorschach and the TAT are based on the concept of apperception. TAT: Thematic Apperception Test Why is it that we perceive reality this or that way?

15 The End

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