The reluctant alliance: behaviorism and humanism

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Prometheus Books, 1992 - Philosophy - 130 pages
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Humanism and radical behaviorism are two of today's most anxiety-provoking systems of thought. While they have challenged some of society's most comforting notions, each has long been viewed as opposed to the other's practice of psychology. In this adversarial climate of contemporary psychology, Bobby Newman's compelling assessment in The Reluctant Alliance effectively tears down many of the ideological walls separating these two powerful schools of thought. He carefully researches the positions of both camps to dispel the myths that behaviorists are "manipulators" and humanistic psychologists are "armchair philosophers." After examining both systems, Newman outlines their shared philosophical and historical roots and explores such questions as: How should psychotherapy be conducted? How is moral behavior created and maintained? Is behaviorism inherently unethical? What forms of education are most effective at imparting information and improving self-concepts? As Newman points out, "It is my intention to demonstrate that the differences between the two systems are not as great as they are made to seem. More importantly, I will suggest that each system contains flaws that can be corrected by combining elements of the other." After reading The Reluctant Alliance humanists will come to appreciate that behaviorism is not destructive determinism, and behaviorists will learn that much of what they hold to be true is a natural outgrowth of humanistic thought.

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Applied Behavior Analysis Humanism
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