Encyclopedia of Critical Psychology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Teo


Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5583-7_94


Psychology’s main concern has been the processes within the person; thus the environment has not received much attention. While the environment plays a part in influencing the processes within a person, “environment” has been an elusive term within psychology. It has often been reduced to stimuli in behaviorist psychology or limited to “other people” in social psychology. Environmental psychology emphasizes the physical setting.


The definition of the environment varies depending on the subfield or perspective within the discipline of psychology. The environment is often conceived as limited to discrete physical or social stimuli, and it has been argued (Proshansky, 1974) that no single theoretical task has been more neglected in traditional psychological theory and research. In environmental psychology, a subfield that considers the environment as its central theme, the environment refers to the physical setting, which includes the natural as well as the built...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.City University of New YorkNew YorkUSA