A powerful theory and a paradox: Ecological psychologists after Barker

  • Scott M
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Abstract

Roger Barker, influenced by Lewin, developed a powerful theory in psychology, behavior setting theory. Paradoxically, this theory is still not widely known or understood in mainstream American psychology. Oral histories of the core group whoworked with Barker were collected and examined to determine influences on them and subsequent directions in the field of ecological psychology in an attempt to understand this paradox. Three clusters of factors emerged. Behavior setting theory has been affirmed in a number of places, including other behavioral sciences, but has not as yet moved into mainstream psychology, although there are some indications that the theory is moving in that direction. These directions as well as barriers are discussed. Key Words: ecological psychology * behavior setting theory * Roger Barker * history of psychology

Author-supplied keywords

  • Behavior setting theory
  • Ecological psychology
  • History of psychology
  • Roger Barker

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Authors

  • M. M. Scott

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