Behaviorism Quotes

Quotes tagged as "behaviorism" Showing 1-13 of 13
Nikola Tesla
“Science is opposed to theological dogmas because science is founded on fact. To me, the universe is simply a great machine which never came into being and never will end. The human being is no exception to the natural order. Man, like the universe, is a machine. Nothing enters our minds or determines our actions which is not directly or indirectly a response to stimuli beating upon our sense organs from without. Owing to the similarity of our construction and the sameness of our environment, we respond in like manner to similar stimuli, and from the concordance of our reactions, understanding is born. In the course of ages, mechanisms of infinite complexity are developed, but what we call 'soul' or 'spirit,' is nothing more than the sum of the functionings of the body. When this functioning ceases, the 'soul' or the 'spirit' ceases likewise.

I expressed these ideas long before the behaviorists, led by Pavlov in Russia and by Watson in the United States, proclaimed their new psychology. This apparently mechanistic conception is not antagonistic to an ethical conception of life.”
Nikola Tesla, Inventions, Researches and Writings of Nikola Tesla

John B. Watson
“Give me a dozen healthy infants, well-formed, and my own specified world to bring them up in and I’ll guarantee to take any one at random and train him to become any type of specialist I might select—doctor, lawyer, artist, merchant-chief and, yes, even beggar-man and thief, regardless of his talents, penchants, tendencies, abilities, vocations, and race of his ancestors. (1930)”
John Broadus Watson, Behaviorism

Michael   Lewis
“The Piranha didn’t talk like a person. He said things like “If you fuckin’ buy this bond in a fuckin’ trade, you’re fuckin’ fucked.” And “If you don’t pay fuckin’ attention to the fuckin’ two-year, you get your fuckin’ face ripped off.” Noun, verb, adjective: fucker, fuck, fucking. No part of speech was spared. His world was filled with copulating inanimate objects and people getting their faces ripped off.”
Michael Lewis, Liar's Poker

Thomas Pynchon
“It isn't the sort of argument Pointsman relishes either. But he glances sharply at this young anarchist in his red scarf. "Pavlov believed that the ideal, the end we all struggle toward in science, is the true mechanical explanation. He was realistic enough not to expect it in his lifetime. Or in several lifetimes more. But his hope was for a long chain of better and better approximations. His faith ultimately lay in a pure physiological basis for the life of the psyche. No effect without cause, and a clear train of linkages.

"It's not my forte, of course," Mexico honestly wishing not to offend the man, but really, "but there's a feeling about that cause-and-effect may have been taken as far as it will go. That for science to carry on at all, it must look for a less narrow, a less . . . sterile set of assumptions. The next great breakthrough may come when we have the courage to junk cause-and-effect entirely, and strike off at some other angle."

"No - not 'strike off.' Regress. You're 30 years old, man. There are no 'other angles.' There is only forward - into it – or backward.”
Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow

Abhijit Naskar
“​On top of the government-hierarchy you need an unpolluted group of scientists to give a nation the best direction.”
Abhijit Naskar

B.F. Skinner
“One may take the line that metaphorical devices are inevitable in the early stages of any science and that although we may look with amusement today upon the “essences,” “forces,” “phlogistons,” and “ethers,” of the science of yesterday, these nevertheless were essential to the historical process. It would be difficult to prove or disprove this. However, if we have learned anything about the nature of scientific thinking, if mathematical and logical researches have improved our capacity to represent and analyze empirical data, it is possible that we can avoid some of the mistakes of adolescence. Whether Freud could have done so is past demonstrating, but whether we need similar constructs in the future prosecution of a science of behavior is a question worth considering.”
B.F. Skinner, Critique of Psychoanalytic Concepts and Theories

B.F. Skinner
“I would have been glad to agree to let them all proceed henceforth in complete ignorance of psychology, if they would forget my opinion of chocolate sodas or the story of the amusing episode on a Spanish streetcar.”
B. F. Skinner

Abhijit Naskar
“Any human action that goes against what is ordinary, is deemed as an anomaly.”
Abhijit Naskar, In Search of Divinity: Journey to The Kingdom of Conscience

Paul Gibbons
“Behaviorism was a busted flush, but neo-behaviorist theories, especially choice architecture, achieve behavioral change without coercion or the downsides of carrots and sticks.”
Paul Gibbons, The Science of Successful Organizational Change: How Leaders Set Strategy, Change Behavior, and Create an Agile Culture

Theodore Dalrymple
“Metaphysics, said the late nineteenth-century idealist philosopher Bradley, is the finding of bad reasons for what we believe on instinct; but metaphysics has changed in the meantime, and is now the finding of bad reasons for what we cannot possibly believe however hard we try. All I can say is that the disbelief in the reality of consciousness or personal identity has never prevented anyone from copyrighting his book in which that unreality is argued; and I very much doubt that any author of such a book has ever been completely indifferent as to the bank account into which its royalties were paid.”
Theodore Dalrymple, Admirable Evasions: How Psychology Undermines Morality

“We claim to be self-made, yet we all have accents”
Leon Huene

“Echophenomena, such as autistic echoing of phrases, are largely considered involuntary, even if such echoing is done voluntarily. (Such are the paradoxes of compliance.) Conversely, imitation, such as complying with a behavioral analyst's demand to mirror her jumping body, is regarded as voluntary, even if it is coerced or scripted.”
Melanie Yergeau, Authoring Autism: On Rhetoric and Neurological Queerness