16 January in the H...
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16 January in the History of Psychology

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On January 16:

1807 — Psychiatrist Isaac Ray was born. Ray was among the first to promote the insanity defense in criminal trials. His Medical Jurisprudence of Insanity (1838) was the first American book on the subject. Ray was also one of the founders of the Association of Medical Superintendents of American Institutions for the Insane (1844), a precursor of the American Psychiatric Association.

1838 — Franz Brentano was born. Brentano's psychology, essentially a rational analysis of the mind's activities while experiencing external events, provided an alternative to the content psychology of Wilhelm Wundt and to physiological reductionism.

1843 — The New York State Lunatic Asylum (later named Utica State Hospital), authorized by the New York legislature on March 30, 1836, was opened for the admission of patients. The first superintendent was Amariah Brigham. A printing shop was established for the purpose of occupational therapy and, in 1844, it published the American Journal of Insanity, the world's first journal devoted to mental illness, with Brigham as editor.

1883 — The U.S. Civil Service Commission was established by Congress in the wake of President Garfield's assassination by an office seeker denied a government appointment through the spoils system. The Civil Service Act, or "Pendleton Act," provided for competitive examinations based on "those matters which will fairly test the relative capacity and fitness" of the candidate. Psychological tests of aptitude and achievement were developed to meet this need.

1922 — Harry Levinson was born. Levinson has applied research in clinical psychology and health psychology to business management settings. His books Emotional Health in the World of Work (1964), Executive Stress (1970), and CEO: Corporate Leadership in Action (1984) represent this work. APA Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions, 1992.

1928 — Jack Brehm was born. Brehm's reactance theory describes human and animal responses to events that threaten or eliminate behavioral choices.

1933 — Judith Bardwick was born. Bardwick's specialties have been the psychology of women and organizational psychology. Her book Psychology of Women (1971) is a noteworthy treatment of the topic.

1990 — The National Conference on Scientist-Practitioner Education and Training for the Professional Practice of Psychology began in Gainesville, Florida. The purpose of the conference was to define the essential characteristics of the scientist-practitioner model that originated with the Boulder Conference of 1949.