It is said that all psychology, as well as applied psychology, has a long history, but a short past. This implies that, whereas people have discussed, debated, and described human behavior at least since the ancient Greeks, it was not until three‐quarters of the way through the 19th century that the discipline was dignified with academic departments, professors, textbooks, and all the other paraphernalia of a recognized discipline.
Some people, who were probably badly taught the subject at school, often complain that history is just about learning names and dates. Yet many also recognize that those who have no knowledge of their past are condemned never to learn from their mistakes.
There are many ways to look at the history of psychology. It can be done by examining developments in certain areas like clinical or work psychology or specific countries or regions. However, by far the most popular method has been to look at the contribution of individual psychologists.
In this chapter we summarize two very popular books that aimed to list all the major names in psychology and their central ideas. These are arranged in chronological order. There are of course a number of decisions to be made about who to include and exclude. People have their own preferences and prejudices, which means that they might favor a fellow countryman or someone who shares a similar outlook and philosophy rather ...