Basic Biographical Information
James Sully was born in Bridgewater, England, on March 3, 1842. He received from his parents a nonconformist religious upbringing, and for his undergraduate studies, he explored philosophy in line with his family’s religious beliefs. In these studies, Sully received training, especially in philosophy of mind, where a vogue of the day was the “associationist” theory in the writings of John Stuart Mill, Alexander Bain, and Benjamin Davis. During Sully’s M.A. studies, which were also in philosophy, he added greater attention to rigorous scientific research on the mind, and for part of his masters’ work he studied in Germany, from January 1867 to March 1868 – under Hermann Lotze in Göttingen and Hermann von Helmholtz and Emil du Bois-Reymond in Berlin. Sully again visited the German labs during fall of 1871. By the 1870s, Sully had broad interests, including Darwinian theory and ideas of the “associationists.” He ultimately focused on childhood and...
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