Franz Brentano and the object of study of psychology | Psychology Concepts.

Franz Brentano (1838-1917) is considered one of the most important psychologists of the beginning of the discipline, due to diversification of studies interests. Your psychology was empiricist basis, i.e., observation. Contrary to the psychology of Wundt, who was of experimentation, Brentano believed it was more important the mental act than the object itself. For example, for he was more important to study the mental act of view, than the mental content what is seen. This method became known as the psychology Act.
Brentano argued that there should be a distinction between structure and experience experience as activity. Contrary to Wundt and his followers and redirecting the object of study of psychology, Brentano had to create a different method of analysis of introspection (look inside of themselves), once the Act is not accessible by this medium. Thus, he created the method of analysis of mental acts through observation (empiricism), more suited to the psychology of the Act.
Brentano perfected two forms of study of mental acts:

  • through the use of memory (memory of the mental processes involved in a given mental state);
  • through the use of imagination (imagining a mental state and observing the mental processes that occur).
Although attracted many followers, the psychology of Brentano was not as well-known as that of Wundt, because it published more works and articles. Psychologists thought easier to study the sensations or the content aware with the methods of psychophysics, than use the observation to analyze the more evasive actions (those who leave doubts).
In the same moderate line Brentano and influenced by this is Carl Stumpf (1848-1936), who claimed to be the most important data phenomena for psychology. The Phenomenology, kind of introspection defended by Stumpf, relates to the examination of impartial experience, as it occurs, without attempting to reduce it to their elementary components (reductionism), as did Wundt.


History of modern psychology/Duane p. Schultz, Sydney Ellen Schultz; translation Suely Sleepand Murai Cuccio. -São Paulo: Cengage Learning, 2009.
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