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Posts Tagged ‘Archives of the History of American Psychology’

–contributed by Arianna Iliff, graduate student assistant.

By the time you read this, I will be gone…from graduate school! After two and a half years here at the CCHP, I’m hitting the road with a fresh Master’s degree in Counseling/Marriage and Family Therapy in hand. Before I started school, I had a goal to get a job that would help me understand my field better and back up the knowledge I gained in class, and I was so lucky to find the CCHP in the process. I’ve spent the last two and a half years learning by doing, searching through manuscripts and images for our researchers and getting drawn into the stories of psychology’s history. So for my final blog post, I’d like to talk a little bit about two of my favorite therapists in history. Carl Whitaker and Virginia Satir were a pair of iconoclasts: major influences in my own field of family therapy and originators of an experiential model of therapy.

Carl Whitaker, a psychiatrist by trade, was a major advocate for co-therapy, or two therapists working with one family. Whitaker was known for making outrageous statements in therapy sessions, what I like to call his “sick Whitakerisms.” By using this ‘therapy of the absurd,’ he was able to get families out of their comfort zone to promote growth. I was surprised to find him in the James F. T. Bugenthal papers, where there is an entire folder of correspondence with Carl Whitaker. In this correspondence, he discusses the inclusion of his paper “The Therapist as a Prototype” in The Challenge of Humanistic Psychology.

“The important thing is that you stay for breakfast, not whether you sleep with me the night before.” I am entirely unsurprised this quotation stuck with Whitaker. [James F. T. Bugenthal papers, Box M951, Folder 1]

Virginia Satir was a co-founder of the Mental Research Institute, home to several prolific family therapists. The first time I saw a recording of her performing therapy, she was instructing a father and son on the best way to communicate love through touch. Virginia’s entire therapeutic approach centered on communication, and she made it her goal to assist families with saying, whether verbally or nonverbally, exactly what they mean. She appears several times in our Popular Psychology magazine collection, where she is interviewed as a thought leader in the world of family functioning.

Despite being known for her gentle and nurturing style, Satir had a direct streak: “I really have no interest in preserving families that don’t belong together.” [Special Interest, Popular Psychology Magazines, Box 93]

Virginia Satir says in her book ­­The New Peoplemaking, “Without loving and being loved, the human soul and spirit curdle and die” (p. 141). In her own parlance, working at the CCHP has enriched my own soul, allowing me to get to know the humans behind the history through primary sources. My colleagues here have been so kind to me, and so willing to allow me to learn. And of course, I’d like to thank you, readers, for enjoying these trips through the collection with me here on the blog.

Now, I am going forth to be a therapist, and I hope in my own career I can do something important enough to be included in the CCHP archives.

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– contributed by CCHP graduate student assistant Tori Deming.

Over the past year I’ve been digitizing the Donald Dewsbury still image collection. The collection includes over 4,000 black-and-white photographs and spans four decades.  Dewsbury took photographs of psychologists and animal behaviorists at various conference and meetings, including APA and Cheiron.

Most of the projects I’ve worked on have involved reintegrating separated photographs back into their original collections. I processed the Donald Dewsbury still images collection from start to finish and the collection was unique in the sense that I recognized many of the individuals from my time here at CCHP.

Like this guy.

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Back in the year 2000 when this photo was taken the CCHP was still AHAP and we were in the basement of an old department store. As a team under David Baker’s leadership we have come a long way!

 

And thanks to the generosity of this man and Dr. Dorothy Cummings we are now the Dr. Nicholas and Dorothy Cummings Center for the History of Psychology, a center which houses the Archives of the History of Psychology, The National Museum of Psychology, and the Institute for Human Science and Culture.

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Nicholas A. Cummings (1999, San Francisco, CA)

 

Here are a few of our current CCHP Board Members. They’re all so happy!

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Top (left to right): Florence Denmark (1992, Washington, DC), Ludy T. Benjamin, Jr. (1991, San Francisco, CA), Don Freedheim (1992, Brussels, Belgium), Rob Wozniak (1988, Bryn Mawr, PA).  Bottom (left to right): Lew Lipsitt (1989, New Orleans, LA), Chris “The Mustache” Green (1993, Toronto, Ontario), and Alexandra Rutherford (1999, Boston, MA)

 

I remembered Philip Zimbardo from his visit to the CCHP in 2015.

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Check out this great tie! Philip Zimbardo (1992, Washington, DC)

 

Since 2013 the Center has hosted the Ludy T. Benjamin, Jr. Distinguished Lecture in the History of Psychology. In 2015 we hosted Elizabeth Loftus and in 2017 we hosted Keith Humphreys.

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Don captured Elizabeth in 1994 in Seattle and Keith in 2003 in Toronto.

This year’s lecture is coming up on May 16 and the speaker is Laura Stark from Vanderbilt University. Register here! 

The familiar face that was most surprising was F. Robert Treichler. I know him as Dr. T.

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F. Robert Treichler (2000, Akron, OH)

I took Dr. T’s History of Psychology course when I was an undergraduate at Kent State University and he introduced me to my love of the subject. He also introduced me to the Center when he brought our class on a field trip in 2013. Seeing his face in this collection was exciting and reminded me of how my journey here all started.

As an amateur photographer myself, one of the things I appreciate most about this collection is how Don Dewsbury was able to capture the emotion of the subjects of his photographs.

These smiles are infectious!

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Top (left to right): Karl L. Wuensch (1983, Philadelphia, PA), Marie Lawrence (1988, Clemson, SC), Stanley Schneider (1991, San Francisco, CA). Middle (left to right): Stanley Graham (Washington, DC, 1992), Frank J. Sulloway (1989, Gainesville, FL), Thomas Carlson (1990, Southhampton, MA) Bottom (left to right): Mary S. Erskine (1992, Washington, DC)

 

The Donald Dewsbury still images collection is a treasure trove and we are so thankful that Don donated his collection to the archives. (We are equally thankful that he identified the subjects of nearly all of the images!)

Go ahead, browse the collection. You may just find yourself among the 4,295 photographs.

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Robert W. Matthews (1985, Raleigh, NC)

 

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-contributed by Emily Gainer & Nicole Merzweiler.

During the past 11 months, we’ve started a large but important undertaking.  I am processing the Wertheimer Family papers!  The papers are a treasure trove of documents, photographs, scrapbooks, diaries, and correspondence from one of the giants in the history of psychology.  When complete, the papers will include the Max Wertheimer papers and the Michael Wertheimer papers. Max Wertheimer (1880-1943), an Austro-Hungarian psychologist, was one of the founders and leaders of the school of Gestalt psychology. His son, Michael, is a psychologist and historian of psychology at the University of Colorado.

Today, we want to announce the digitization and preservation of three scrapbooks from the Wertheimer Family papers. For this project, I had invaluable assistance from Nicole Merzweiler, a student in the Library and Information Science program at Kent State University.

The first, and smallest, scrapbook includes photographs of Wilhelm and Rosa Wertheimer (Max’s parents) as well as Max as a young man. The date range for photographs in this scrapbook is 1891-1929.

The second scrapbook includes photographs of Max Wertheimer, Anni Wertheimer, and their children, dating between 1915-1930.

The third scrapbook includes Max Wertheimer’s family photographs as well as some colleagues and friends.  The only dates included in the scrapbook are 1932 and 1933, though the range seems to be greater.

Smallest and earliest scrapbook from the Wertheimer Family papers.

Largest and latest scrapbook from the Wertheimer Family papers.

The scrapbooks each contained loose photographs, which were also digitized. These photographs were housed in acid-free folders and stored with the scrapbook in archival boxes.

Preserving and making these scrapbooks available online was a lengthy process.  It began with identifying the contents of each scrapbook and rehousing them in appropriately sized archival boxes.  Then, each scrapbook was added to the finding aid.  Next, each page of each scrapbook was carefully digitized in accordance with archival standards.  Then the digital files were prepared for uploading to the CONTENTdm, the Cummings Center’s online database.  Nicole created metadata for each scrapbook, including names, dates, and locations identified in each book.

Nicole scans the earliest scrapbook.

Finally, each page in each scrapbook is encapsulated using archival Mylar plastic.  For a full explanation of encapsulation, see Encapsulation Capers (written by a CCHP intern).  Nicole followed these same procedures to preserve and protect the scrapbooks.

Nicole encapsulated each page of the Wertheimer scrapbook.

Encapsulating the scrapbook pages maintains the historical context while also preserving the photographs.

You can view a digital copy of the three scrapbooks through the CCHP Still Images database.  The Wertheimer Family papers included additional photographs, which are also being digitized and added to the database.  Processing the Wertheimer Family papers continues and is scheduled for completion by June 1.  Watch for an announcement with more details when it is available to researchers!

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Contributed by Rose Stull, student assistant.

Gilbert Gottlieb was a research scientist and clinical psychologist.  He was the first graduate student in Duke University’s joint psychology-zoology graduate training program.  At Duke, he became interested in imprinting in waterfowl.  After working at Dorothea Dix Hospital from 1961-1982), Gottlieb became a professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina Greensboro (1982-1995).

The Gilbert Gottlieb papers document his career through written works, correspondence, research files, academic files, unpublished experiments, administrative files, photographs, and slides. We are happy to announce that these papers are now available for research at the CCHP.

Gilbert Gottlieb in his office at Dorothea Dix Hospital, undated. Box M6569, Folder 21

Gottlieb researched early social development in different species of precocial birds in the field and in the lab. He is known for his contributions to the fields of developmental science, and his research focused on ducks and their prenatal and postnatal imprinting behaviors.

Ducklings in Broods with Models, audio visual experiment test shots, undated. M6569, Folder 15

The collection contains hundreds of photographs and slides of Gottlieb and his team conducting research in the field and inside his laboratory at the Dorothea Dix hospital. Gottlieb examined the nuances of development, including the idea of critical periods and imprinting. His focus on imprinting involved auditory and visual testing, examining the development of naturalistic imprinting tendencies. This is a small sample of photographs taken from the Gottlieb collection. In the next few weeks, we’re digitizing the photographs and slides and adding them to the CCHP’s online database.

Gottlieb inspecting nest boxes at Dorothea Dix Field Research Station, undated. Box M6569, Folder 20

 

Nest boxes at Dorothea Dix Field Research Station, undated. Box M6569, Folder 3

 

Audio vs. visual Tests, 1966. Box M6569, Folder 4

 

Chick or duck embryo, undated. Box M6569, Folder 10

 

Duckling in Head Holder; 8th Nerve Dissection, undated. Box M6569, Folder 16

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– contributed by Lizette R. Barton (sitness guru).

While rifling through the David Shakow papers I came across a Navy/Marine Corps booklet titled “Shape Up: A New Program of Exercise to Build Fitness Right at Your Desk.”

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Fitness right at my desk? Tell me more.

The news got even better when I opened the booklet and learned a bit more about Isometrics. #1 It’s a science. #2 It’s exercise without movement and #3 it requires just 54 seconds per day. SOLD!

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“Using the nine basic exercises described here, you can work toward physical fitness right at your desk – and in 54 seconds a day.” 

My own enthusiasm led me to believe that my colleagues here at the Cummings Center for the History of Psychology might be interested as well. I was right.

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Assistant Processing Archivist Emily Gainer demonstrating “The Hand Press”

 

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Building coordinator Dorothy Gruich demonstrating “The Neck Presser”

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Assistant Director Dr. Cathy Faye demonstrating the “Tummy Tightener”  (complete with facial expression to really sell it)

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IHSC curator and instructor Fran Ugalde demonstrating “The Criss-Cross”

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Director Dr. David Baker demonstrating “The Body Lift”

The nine exercises highlighted in “Shape Up” were, “…designed specifically for those individuals in the Navy and Marine Corps whose duties or location restrict their ability to engage in athletic activities or other fitness programs….and those in other sedentary occupations.”

If you have a chair and a desk along with some initiative, pride, and desire maybe it’s time you take your exercise sitting down this year.

New year, new you. Am I right?

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David Shakow papers, M1312, folder “Pamphlets”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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contributed by Aubrey Baldwin, Phillip Fischio, Anthony Greenaway, Laura Loop, and Katelynn Olsen (students in the Museums & Archives Certificate Program).

Fire, arson, danger. Most people don’t associate these words with children; however the work of George A. Sakheim might suggest otherwise.

Card taken from Sakheim’s original collection, which states his research. Box M6591; Folder 1

 

George A. Sakheim, a clinical psychologist, did most of his research on the fire-setting behaviors of children during the 1970s to the early 2000s. Dr. Sakheim’s discoveries led to various published works on child arsonists. Overall, his work contributed to a greater understanding of a topic that previously was not well understood.

Most of the information was garnered through therapy sessions with minor fire-setter case studies.  Many of the children that Dr. Sakheim worked with suffered from mental illness, which may have contributed to their fire-setting behaviors. Part of his work involved assessing the level of risk exhibited by each child. He ranked each patient as minor, moderate, or severe. Dr. Sakheim performed many different tests to create these rankings. One such test was an exercise allowing the children to draw something associated to what they were discussing in therapy.

Example of a patient’s drawing. Box M6592; Folder 11

 

The various cases that Dr. Sakheim reviewed of child and adolescent fire-setters made him an expert on the subject. His expertise secured him a consulting position with the New York State Office of Developmental Disabilities and Mental Retardation. He also wrote several books and articles on the topic, helping the psychological community gain a better understanding of the phenomenon. 

Juvenile Firesetters in Residential Treatment by George A. Sakheim et al. Box M6609; Folder 2

 

Dr. Sakheim’s archival papers documenting this work are now available at the Cumming’s Center for the History of Psychology. The papers contain 20 letter size document cases and 1 record storage box, all relating to Dr. Sakheim’s work. All of the patient files are restricted, including cassette tapes of interviews with firesetters, but Dr. Sakheim’s research and written works are open for research.  View the finding aid for the George Sakheim papers for more details.

The processing of this archival collection fulfilled requirements for students enrolled in the course Foundations of Museums and Archives I.

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contributed by Allan Christopher, Amanda Leach, Sarah Riddle, M. Rose Stull (students in the Museums & Archives Certificate Program).

The Marianne Simmel papers consist of the primary research, patient files, correspondence and publications of psychologist Dr. Marianne Simmel, as well as her work/research with the performers Marcel Marceau and Charlie Chaplin.

Picture of Dr. Marianne Simmel in Paris, Early 1950’s. Located in Box M6613, Folder 11.

The primary focus of her research was the phantom limb phenomenon, and she also dabbled in cognitive neuropsychology. Her work with phantom limbs focused on adults and children with neurological defects. Amputations were a large focus, and she also did work with mastectomy patients. She explored animacy and the human instinct for storytelling, which led to an extensive collection following the work of Charlie Chaplin and Marcel Marceau.

Dr. Simmel, pictured second from left, conducting research at the University of Illinois. Located in Box M6613, Folder 11.

Dr. Simmel’s work with phantom limbs included various tests meant to induce/test sensation where the missing body part once was, such as experiments with heat and cold.

Sample of test sheets Dr. Simmel gave to her patients. Located in Box M6613, Folder 7.

She corresponded with Dr. Jean Piaget, a renowned child psychologist of the time. Much of this correspondence is  in French and, considering she was born in Germany, it is reasonable to assume she was trilingual.

Simmel also published several studies on the phantom limb phenomena, including the physical and psychological effects on patients of various circumstances and health conditions. One of the ways Simmel did this was by studying the human capacity for symbolic art form, particularly by working with performers Marcel Marceau and Charlie Chaplin. She would often go on tour with Marceau, giving lectures after his initial performance in order to make her point.

Playbill featuring Marcel Marceau. Located in Box M6630, Folder 3.

While going through her research files, we also found representations of the Homunculus, which shows the relative extent of symmetric motor and sensory representation in the cerebral cortex.

Blind Child (Fig. 1), An Example of Bad Art (Fig. II) and Homunculus (Fig. III).

To learn more about the contents of this collection, view the finding aid. You can view the collection in person at the Cummings Center for the History of Psychology, located in Akron, Ohio.

The processing of this archival collection fulfilled requirements for students enrolled in the course Foundations of Museums and Archives, I.

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