13 books — 7 voters
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“Verbal Behavior” is a 1957 book by psychologist B. F. Skinner that analyzes human behavior, encompassing what is traditionally called language, linguistics, or speech. For Skinner, verbal behavior is subject to the same controlling variables as any other operant behavior, although Skinner differentiates between verbal behavior which is mediated by other people, and that w ...more
Paperback, 478 pages
Published November 19th 2002 by Copley Publishing Group
(first published 1957)
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This was Skinner's most audacious move. He took up the challenge from A.N. Whitehead to try and explain verbal behavior. Not a bad try at the time, given the theoretical framework available in the 1950's. We're a bit further down the road now. I'd make this comparison: "Verbal Behavior" is to verbal behavior as "The Origin of Species" is to contemporary genetics, if you know what I mean...
A seminal work. Really. Half a century later, the concepts in this book are the bedrock of some of the most empirically-validated approaches to teaching language to children diagnosed with autism. A radically different way to think about how and why we talk -- but also confusing and dry.
Burrhus Frederic Skinner was a highly influential American psychologist, author, inventor, advocate for social reform and poet. He was the Edgar Pierce Professor of Psychology at Harvard University from 1958 until his retirement in 1974. He invented the operant conditioning chamber, innovated his own philosophy of science called Radical Behaviorism, and founded his own school of experimental resea ...more