The Work of Harold Wolff. The Protective Reaction. Summary of the First half of the 20th Century. From the s to Richard Lazarus. Stress in the s and s. Stressful Life Events. The Social Readjustment Scale. Daily Hassles and Uplifts and the Debate that Followed. Personality and Type A Behavior Patterns. Towards the Study of Individual Differences. A Return to the s and s and a change in Focus. The History of Stress in Sweden. The Origins of Organizational Psychology. The Work of Richard Lazarus. The Beginnings.
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Work Stress and Occupational Health Psychology. Work Stress. Beyond Role Conflict, Ambiguity and Overload. Early Research Frameworks and Identifying Strains. Toward an Integrated Model of Work Stress. Work Stress and Coping. Occupational Health Psychology. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. From the Past to the Future. What does History add to Our Understanding of Stress'. Searching for the Organizing Concept of the future. Distinguishing Between Description and Meaning. The naturalization of art implies that in perceiving and producing art we mostly follow evolutionary and adaptive bases.
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Evolutionary psychology and art theory based on sexual selection and genetic inheritance share a transversal and inclusive concept of art, and they argue that art has been present in all cultures. There is and always has been art in all societies, because it allowed human beings to survive and reproduce Dutton, , p. According to this theory, the origin of landscape preference relies on a combination of the aforementioned studies by Appleton and evolutionary psychology as developed by Ulrich and Kaplan Moreover, Dutton refers to the famous savannah hypothesis on landscape tastes Orians and Heerwagen, ; Falk and Balling, , which is based on the idea that, like the hominids in the African savannah, human beings continue to prefer open, mildly flat landscapes savannah-like settings , with water directly in view and a clear way both to avoid predators and to keep an eye on them.
Dutton emphasizes that this kind of explanation of landscape tastes implies that the cultural background plays a minimal or null role. Yet the naturalization of art does not necessarily always deny the role of culture and cultural background in aesthetic appraisal. Naturalism generally implies an attempt to ground its conclusions in empirical findings.
Moreover, although many neuroscientists and philosophers of art follow only psycho-evolutionary theory, others argue that emotions, which play a pivotal role in aesthetic appraisal, may be different in different cultural settings Prinz, , pp. Likewise, we exclude neither culture nor naturalization from the determination of perception of landscape, and consequently from its definition. On the contrary, we believe that a broader and more comprehensive theory of landscape will prove a key factor in explaining why there is such a close and far-reaching relationship between health and landscape.
If it is agreed that cultural background may determine the psychological and emotional well-being of the agent, then it is the naturalization of landscape which is able to explain its connection with medically understood health. In the end, to naturalize landscape without denying its cultural dimension, we need to focus on how we perceive it.
In order to understand what landscape is and how it affects our health, we have to address biological and ecological theories of perception of the environment. The perception of landscape is a complex scheme insofar as we participate in the construction of our environment. We propose to firstly focus on the role of the agent and to consider landscape as the product of a group of histories. To visualize these histories, we have drawn up a simple diagram Figure 1 which will be further developed in our concept of a processual landscape Figure 2.
We take inspiration from Berque , according to whom different scales participate in the construction of landscape through human perception. The biological dimension implies different approaches: the evolutionary, the ecological and the embodiment theory of knowledge and perception.
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While the analysis of the cultural origin of landscape and its visual dimension is now clear see Introduction and Main Theoretical Issues and Approaches , we have yet to demonstrate how the concept of landscape could be naturalized through a theory of perception. Even though naturalization has already been attempted by both evolution-based and neurophysiology-based approaches, the theory we favor when analyzing landscape perception is J.
By questioning the classical idea of perception, we argue, Gibson questions the idea of landscape as well. But in both cases the application implies nothing less than a change of paradigm. According to Heft , research into perception and aesthetics in environmental psychology has long been dominated by a concept of vision that can be traced at least as far back as the Renaissance.
In this old paradigm, vision is considered the primary element in defining landscape and is conceptualized as an image-capturing process Heft, , p. Gibson, the other hand, introduces a new theory of perception by asking what role perceiving plays in the everyday functioning of an organism. Perceiving becomes a part of the ongoing processes that make up the life of an organism, and is necessary to its survival.
Real vision also concerns the free movement of the head ambient vision and the free movement of the body ambulatory vision. Furthermore, the perceiver finds himself emplaced with a body in an ecosystem. There are differences between the two frameworks, but they share a non-objectivist perspective of vision. That is, he does not gaze upon a world that is finite and complete, and proceeds to fashion a representation of it. Gibson strongly argues against indirect perception 5 and claims that an organism directly perceives meaning from the environment and that this happens at the level of medium, surfaces, substances, and events that are relevant to its life.
In order to specify the moment of perception and exemplify the relationship between perceiver and medium, Gibson introduces the concept of affordance : in the flow of perception the human perceiver directly picks up affordances. It is in this context that a series of illusions are usually presented as the basis of Gestalt theory. They demonstrate how visual perception is determined by a non-mediated reconstruction of the context of the stimuli. For Gestalt theory, the meaning or the value of a thing seems to be perceived just as immediately as its color. What is an affordance , then?
Using this new term, Gibson describes what environment affords to animals: terrain, water, fire, objects, tools, and other animals. The crucial point is to understand how the environment affords that is, gives the possibility of perception and action. The composition and the layout of surfaces constitute what they afford, and affordance emerges only when different characteristics of individuals, such as their physical dimensions and abilities, social needs and personal intensions, are matched with the features of the environment.
Instead of perceiving an object environment, and then determining some future action through hypothesis testing over a symbolic world model, we directly perceive what the environment affords given our own physical embodiment.
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This relational character of affordances implies that they are not properties of either the environment or the animal. Affordances, Chemero , p. It is something unique for every animal and it belongs to and emerges within the relationship between the environment and the perceiver. Different layouts afford different behaviors for different animals, with mechanically different encounters. The different ingredients of the environment have different affordances for nutrition and manufacture; different objects have different affordances for manipulation.
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Also, human and non-human beings reciprocally afford each other a complex set of interactions. Finally, affordance is related to movement: through the affordances of the environment, the body in movement perceives the main invariants of said environment. According to Mossio and Taraborelli , Gibson shares with other authors a sensorimotor approach to perception, meaning that the coupling between motion and the senses is the key to understanding perceptual phenomena: there is no fixed perception such as the postcard view.
Gibson , p. We could even associate landscape itself with the affordances if provides cf. Berque, , i. In the recent debate about affordance and perception, Rietveld and Kiverstein reject the idea that affordances are features of the environment or mechanical elements with ergonomic possibilities. Rietveld and Kiverstein , p. The main point of this approach is that every affordance is related to specific skills and, in the case of human beings, to sociocultural practices. Seen this way, affordances are located in the context of a form of life.
Human beings embedded in a landscape of affordances develop specific skills though their capacity to distinguish what is correct, optimal, adequate or inadequate. Concerning the cultural and biological aspects of affordances, Rietveld and Kiverstein consider that the most important thing is the practice in which an ability is embedded.
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