The Disappearance of Introspection
William Lyons presents an original thesis on introspection as self-interpretation in terms of a culturally influenced model. His work rests on a lucid, careful, and critical examination of the transformations that have occurred over the past century in the concepts and models of introspection in philosophy and psychology. He reviews the history of introspection in the work of Wundt, Boring, and William James, and reactions to it by behaviorists Watson, Lashley, Ryle, and Skinner.
About the Author
William Lyons is Professor of Philosophy and Chairman of the Department at Trinity College, Dublin.
"Lyons takes on the new task of tracing the concept of introspection from its philosophical origins to its usa by the introspectionists at the beginnings of psychology and its role in present-day inquiry .... After reviewing the illusive nature of introspection, [he] proposes that introspection conceptualized in any form of monitoring, inspecting, scanning, or immediate retrieval of data with respect to cognitive processes, is a myth of our culture, an invention of our folk psychology... [his] thesis is to interpret introspection as the replay of perception." American Journal of Psychology