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Learning without Brains: a Review of The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate by Peter Wohleben

2016; 288pp.; Vancouver, Canada: Greystone Books; $13.99; ISBN =978837514306
  • Saul Axelrod
Learning: No Brain Required
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It can be argued that the most controversial tenet of B. F. Skinner’s behaviorism is the claim that the brain and its popular, nebulous surrogate, the mind, do not control behavior (O’Donohue & Szymanski, 1996). Instead, according to Skinner (1977), behavior is under the control of contingencies in the natural environment. Such an assertion challenges the very roots of psychology. The term, psychology, itself is derived from a Greek term meaning, “the study of the breath, spirit, soul.” Psychelater came to mean the totality of the human mind—conscious and unconscious. Psychoanalysis goes farther as it attempts to analyze the mind, particularly the hidden mind, and specifically maps out portions of the mind. That the mind is the crux of human behavior is treated axiomatically by fields such as cognitive psychology, psychoanalysis, and most types of psychotherapy. These endeavors do not struggle over the cruciality of the mind but assume its centrality and attempt to understand it so...

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Copyright information

© Association for Behavior Analysis International 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Temple UniversityElkins ParkUSA

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