Best of the Century.
What do you think are the 5 most important developments and Why?
The way human thinks, the new behaviors they achieve, the way their minds work changes within a century. New ideas and breakthroughs of psychology developed within this century have shaped the humans’ minds. Such developments are listed below:
I. The breakthrough by Ellen Langer, April 1982. Ellen Langer demonstrated that the power of mindfulness or in other words, by thinking—just thinking--may help you live a longer, healthier, and more productive life. "The ultimate harm of mindlessness is that it may shorten one's life span. In several investigations, we created situations that allowed nursing-home residents to be more mindful, to engage in active decision making, and we gave each one a plant for which he was responsible. We found that significantly fewer of the mindful residents had died--in one study, 14% compared with 47%.”
Nita’s Opinion: Depression is increasing among the older society. The following generation will soon develop depression because of the need for attention the older society is putting upon them. I believe Langer’s breakthrough is very significance because it teaches all societies to learn how to control their own minds and make use of it. The elderly doesn’t have to rely on medication to cure their sickness. This theory will also give the elderly more strength and motivation to live when they know they can cure themselves.
II. The second breakthrough, by Matina Homer, November 1969. Matina Homer helped clarify sex roles in the modern era through the comparison of two college students of the opposite sex.
"Consider Phil and Monica, both honor students. We ask Phil to tell us a story based on this situation: After first term finals, a student named John finds himself at the top of his medical school class. Phil responds: 'John is a conscientious student and pleased with himself. He has always wanted to go into medicine... He continues working hard and eventually graduates at the top of his class.' We present Monica with the same situation, but with a female protagonist named 'Ann.' Monica writes: 'Ann starts proclaiming her surprise and joy. Her fellow classmates are so disgusted with her behavior that they jump on her and beat her. She is maimed for life.”
Nita’s Opinion: The majority of the world may believe that sexism had vanished. However, symptoms of sexism are still spread among societies worldwide. This theory should be taken in consideration among all generations. Women’s motive to be successful should not be put down. The treatment and attention received by women’s success should be awarded identically to men. We both are human; we both are responsible for lives. It is unfair and unethical to have such behaviors between women and men.
III. Harry F. Harlow, April 1973. His research with monkeys showed that there are sex differences among them. “Young female and male monkeys respond differently to infants: Males become either indifferent or mildly abusive, whereas females love the infants immediately.”-Harlow
Such behaviors can be related to human.
Nita’s Opinion: An old Thai saying once said, “If a child looses his father the child had lost his father; but if a child looses his/her mother, he has lost both of his parents.” The reason this theory is important because it should make fathers realize and understand the importance of a baby’s mother. This theory should be taught among new parents, showing the needs of a baby for his/her mother. Also, it should make the new mothers realize their need for their babies; this may reduce the number of abortion or the allowance of baby adoptions.
IV. The breakthrough by Elizabeth F. Loftus, February 1986. Elizabeth F.Loftus, a pioneer in memory research, showed how eyewitness testimony is unreliable, and how false memories can be put within both children and adults’ minds. Her work made a huge impact among defense teams and courts worldwide.
"One of the reasons jurors place so much faith in eyewitness testimony is that we are unaware of how many factors influence its accuracy: what questions witnesses are asked by police and how the questions are phrased; the difficulty people have in distinguishing among people of other races; whether witnesses have seen photos of suspects before viewing the lineup; the size, composition type (live or photo) of the lineup itself."
Nita’s Opinion: Loftus’s breakthrough is importance because it had opened the minds of judges and courts worldwide. A person who’s not guilty should never be found guilty. Nobody in the court should be trusted. A person’s intentions (bad/good) can never be analyzed. Therefore eyewitness testimony should never be the number one priority to judge a person’s crime.
V. The final breakthrough is brought to us by Robert Epstein who captured creativity in July 1996. Where does creativity come from? This mystery has been taken much out of creativity by the demonstration of the creative process. Epstein proved that creativity is predictable and such theory is now used by parents and teachers worldwide.
"What we learned is that creativity is not something mystical; it's an extension of what you already know. I have devised four techniques to boost creativity: 1) Capturing. New ideas are like rabbits. If you don't grab them quickly, they're usually gone forever; 2) Challenging. Put yourself in difficult situations in which you're likely to fail to some extent; 3) Broadening. The more training you have and the more diverse that training is, the greater the potential for creative output; and 4) Surrounding. Surround yourself with diverse stimuli--and, even more importantly, change those stimuli regularly."
Nita’s Opinion: I believe that the importance of creativity is equivalent to the importance of learning. Out of all the other nine breakthroughs, I’ve found this breakthrough the most fascinating. The younger generation is as important as today’s generation; now that we know how creativity is formed; we can plan and rely on the minds of the younger generation for new inventions, developments, and discoveries. Parents and teachers should rely on Epstein’s theory to exceed their children’s creativity. Therefore, daydreaming should have an appropriate limitation but creativity should be allowed to exceed.
Artilcle from: http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/index.php?term=pto-19991101-000034&page=1