Article ID: CBB492216538

Motivated historiography: Comments on Wolfgang Schönpflug’s reappraisal of German critical psychology (2021)


Introducing the concept of motivated historiography, we seek to answer the question of what constitutes a good history of psychology and of German Critical Psychology (CP) in particular. It is suggested that one needs to include questions about the purpose of historiography, the background and horizon of the historiographer, the quality and originality of the thesis, the quality of the material, selected and omitted, and the quality of interpretations. We submit that the article by Schönpflug (2021) does not accomplish a realistic account of CP. We conclude that the two original main theses in the article on links of CP to communism and Nazism reflect motivated historiography and are remnants of political and cultural struggles in Germany in the 1970s. We suggest that more important than just denouncing an innovative program is to do justice to the sociopolitical, academic, and theoretical entanglements, the historical contributions and the intellectual legacies of CP, while also accounting for shortcomings. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved)

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Authors & Contributors
Dagg, Joachim
Heidenblad, David Larsson
Casini, Paolo
Hitzer, Bettina
Pinch, Trevor
Westermann, Andrea
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Science in Context
Bulletin for the History of Chemistry
Studium: Tijdschrift voor Wetenschaps- en Universiteitgeschiedenis
Osiris: A Research Journal Devoted to the History of Science and Its Cultural Influences
Metascience: An International Review Journal for the History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Science
Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura
History of science, as a discipline
Historical method
Science and culture
Science and politics
Science and society
Velikovsky, Immanuel
Sarton, George
Galilei, Galileo
Copernicus, Nicolaus
Time Periods
20th century, late
21st century
18th century
20th century, early
20th century
West Germany
Science History Institute (SHI)
Annales school
History of Science Society

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