20-12-2016 | Review
Franz Brentano and the beginning of experimental psychology: implications for the study of psychological phenomena today
Gepubliceerd in: Psychological Research | Uitgave 2/2018Log in om toegang te krijgen
The manifestation of psychology as an academic discipline more than a 100 years ago was accompanied by a paradigm shift in our understanding of psychological phenomena—with both its light and shadow sides. On the one hand, this development allowed for a rigorous and experimentation-based approach to psychological phenomena; on the other, it led to an alienation from the experiential—or qualia—facets as the topics under inquiry were researched increasingly through third-person (e.g., behavioral or physiological) measures. At the turning point of this development stood an eminent but little known European scholar, Franz Brentano, who called for a synthesis of both third-person and first-person research methods in the study of psychological phenomena. On the occasion of his death, a hundred years ago on March 17, 1917 we wish to illustrate the historical background, introduce the reader to Brentano’s approach and work and discuss its relevance for experimental psychology today.