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APA Historical Database: Selected Entries

On November 13:

0354 — Aurelius Augustinus (St. Augustine) was born. Augustine's views stemmed from introspection and phenomenology. He described several faculties of the soul, including reason, memory, will, and imagination.

1841 — James Braid saw his first demonstration of mesmerism. He was convinced that mesmerism was fraudulent but that it produced real effects. He coined the term hypnotism for the phenomenon, believing that it was a heightened state of attention.

1953 — The journal Science published the first description of S. S. Stevens's power law of psychophysics. The brief announcement described a paper titled "On the Brightness of Lights and the Loudness of Sounds," delivered by Stevens to the National Academy of Sciences at its annual meeting at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

1990 — The first electronic mail distribution of the APA Scientific Psychology Action Network (APA-SPAN) newsletter was sent. APA-SPAN is a grassroots network of scientists and academicians interested in legislation affecting psychology.

1990 — Patrick Suppes was awarded the National Medal of Science by President Bush for his work in the measurement of subjective probability and utility, learning theory, the semantics of natural language, and instructional computing.

1990 — President Bush presented the National Medal of Science to John McCarthy. McCarthy named and defined the field of artificial intelligence, developed the computer language LISP, and applied mathematical logic to computer programs that use commonsense knowledge and reasoning.

Copyright © 1995, American Psychological Association. Web version by permission. Source: Street, W. R. (1994). A Chronology of Noteworthy Events in American Psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. The American Psychological Association and Central Washington University have supported the development of the APA Historical Database.

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