An illustrated audio book
By Keith Sanford
This page provides a series of videos for an 18-chapter illustrated audio-book on the history of psychology, racism, and the United States. This video series includes many pictures and illustrations, and it provides a unique perspective on history. It combines the history of psychology, racism, and the United States, and tells the story of how psychology was born into an academic world that was steeped in racism, and how, initially, psychology promoted racist ideas. Along the way, this story also delves into the history of medicine, science, and culture, and it highlights ways that power systems have served to benefit some and oppress many. This series is intended for people who are interested in psychology, and it is intended to be the type of history that we need to know if we want to gain a full understanding of the issues people face today in our culturally diverse country.

Chapter 1: 1776

(62 minutes) The Revolutionary war; the Constitution; slavery in the US; White intellectual theories of race; types of racism; George Washington and Slavery; David Hume and British Associationism (an early psychology theory) and Hume’s racism; current understanding of the nervous system; popular psychology movements (physiognomy and mesmerism); and the moral therapy movement.

Chapter 2: Decade of 1800

(44 minutes) Federalist and Republican politics; Thomas Jefferson and slavery, Sally Hemmings; violence between White males; yeomen; changes in slavery; Napoleonic wars; medicine (humors, bleeding, and miasma theory); Benjamin Rush (father of psychiatry) and Rush’s racist rationale for supporting the abolition of slavery; and the asylum movement in the US.

Chapter 3: Decade of 1810

(21 minutes) The War of 1812; colonialism as a plan to remove Black people from the US; Waterloo and a redrawn map of Europe; and the merits and flaws of Gall’s phrenology (using the shape of a person’s head to assess personality).

Chapter 4: Decade of 1820

(18 minutes) The Missouri Compromise; the second great awakening; alcohol consumption in the US; introduction to Henry James Senior (father of the first American psychologist); research on the nervous system, and Magendie’s research on dorsal and ventral roots in puppies.

Chapter 5: Decade of 1830

(43 minutes) Racist forms of entertainment in popular culture; Andrew Jackson and white male supremacy; the Trail of Tears; innovations in torture to increase productivity of slaves; American Anti-Slavery Society and William Lloyd Garrison (supported abolition from a racist perspective); the idiosyncratic religious ideas of Henry James Senior; Charles Darwin and the voyage of the HMS Beagle; Ernst Weber and German psychophysics; the growth of mesmerism and phrenology in the US.

Chapter 6: Decade of 1840

(42 minutes) War with Mexico; the Irish Potato Famine; the Know Nothing party and discrimination against Irish and Catholic people; academic racist theories (American School of ethnography, Samuel Morton, Josiah Nott, and Edward Jarvis); Seneca Falls convention for women’s rights; the unusual childhood of William James (the first American psychologist); the Berlin Physical Society; Louis Agassiz (the most famous scientist in the US); and the American Journal of Insanity.

Chapter 7: Decade of 1850

(65 minutes) California gold rush and immigration of Chinese males; continued academic racist theories published in the book, “Types of Mankind;” increased tensions over slavery; the growing abolitionist movement (Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Frederick Douglas, John Brown’s raid at Harpers Ferry, the Republican party, the Wide Awakes, and the Free Labor argument) and racist views within the abolitionist movement; Dorothea Dix’s advocacy for people with mental illness; John Snow’s research identifying the cause of cholera; Agassiz’s work at Harvard and his racist theories about the origins of Black and White people; Publication of “On the Origin of Species,” and Darwin’s views on race; two foundations for the future academic discipline of psychology, a German foundation (von Helmholtz, Fechner and Wundt) and an English foundation (Darwin and Galton).

Chapter 8: Decade of 1860

(81 minutes) The Civil War; the conscription act draft riots; reconstruction; railroads; the Austro-Prussian War; Lister’s development of antiseptic surgery; the rise of spiritualism and mind cure movements in the US; discovery of Broca’s area; the early academic work of the first psychologists Wundt and Galton, the racist views in Galton’s book, “Hereditary Genius;” William James’ dabbling in science and medicine and his expedition up the Amazon river with Louis Agassiz; Historically Black Colleges and Universities; Stanley Hall (the eventual founder of the American Psychological Association) and his racist reasons for educating Black people.

Chapter 9: Decade of 1870

(51 minutes) Thomas Edison’s lab and inventions; the end of reconstruction and the establishment of White rule in the South; the massacre of Black people in Colfax Louisiana; wars with Native Americans and White domination over the Western half of the continent; the Franco-Prussian War; Cesare Lombroso’s racist ideas in his book, “Criminal Man;” continued resistance to antiseptic surgery; Wundt’s research and the official beginning of psychology as a new academic discipline; and William James teaching the first psychology course in the US.

Chapter 10: Decade of 1880

(65 minutes) Robber barons and the gilded age; the Chinese Exclusion Act; Wilhelm II becoming emperor of Prussia; Galton’s anthropometric laboratory and the development of a racist agenda called eugenics; Karl Pearson’s work with Galton and his statistical innovations; Stanley Hall establishing the first psychology lab in the US; James Cattell’s Mental tests at the University of Pennsylvania, and Cattell’s student, Lighter Witmer (who will become the first clinical psychologist); Jean Charcot, the famous neurologist in Paris using hypnotism to treat women diagnosed with hysteria, and two people studying with Charcot, Alfred Binet (whose flawed research led to a theory of magnetic transfer) and Sigmund Freud (who advocated for the use of cocaine).

Chapter 11: Decade of 1890

(118 minutes) The Columbian Exposition; the Spanish American War; the Russian Romanov family; formation of the Immigration Restriction League in the US; the supreme court’s “separate but equal” ruling; lynching culture in the south; Freud’s correspondence with Wilhelm Fliess about genital spots in the nose; Witmer’s work with Wundt; the first cohort of psychologists in the US (James, Munsterberg, Titchener, Witmer, Hall, Cattell, and Thorndike), the endeavors of the first cohort, the extent to which this cohort was an elite group of White males, and the extent to which this cohort supported eugenics and racist ideas.

Chapter 12: Decade of 1900

(101 minutes) The Wright Brothers; child labor; silent movies; the progressive movement; Teddy Roosevelt’s dishonorable discharge of the 25th Infantry Regiment of Black soldiers; rising tensions in Europe; W. E. B. Du Bois’ book, “The Souls of Black Folk;” Katherine Blackford’s racist physiognomy-based character analysis for vocational guidance; the growth of asylums in the US; psychologists beginning to pursue applied interests; Gosset’s statistical work at the Guinness Brewing Company; the beginning of psychometric theory; Binet’s development of an intelligence test; sexism in psychology, the first women in the American Psychological Association (Christine Ladd-Franklin, Mary Whiton Calkins, Margaret Floy Washburn); Titchener and Witmer’s exclusion of women in their Experimentalists club; Witmer’s development of a psychological clinic and the beginning of clinical psychology; Yerkes’ paper that introduces the work of Ivan Pavlov to psychologists in the US; the sex scandal that allows John Watson to inherit editorship of Psychological Review; and Freud’s only visit to the US for the Clark Conference hosted by Stanley Hall.

Chapter 13: Decade of 1910

(80 minutes) The Great War; the Women’s Suffrage Movement; the racist movie, “Birth of a Nation;” Rise of Eugenics in United States; Charles Davenport and the Eugenics Record Office; Madison Grant’s book, “The Passing of the Great Race,” arguing for Nordic superiority; sterilization laws; Ronald Fisher (the person who will make major contributions to statistics in psychology) and his feud with Karl Pearson; John Watson’s Behaviorist Manifesto; the unrecognized influence of Freud on Watson’s work; Watson’s problematic study of Little Albert; the intelligence testing movement; the flawed study of the Kallikak family; early intelligence tests (Army Alpha and Beta, the Stanford-Binet), founders of the intelligence testing movement (Goddard, Terman, and Yerkes), the extent to which the these founders all supported racists ideas and advocated for eugenics, and connections between intelligence testing and the new profession of clinical psychology.

Chapter 14: Decade of 1920

(65 minutes) Women gaining the right to vote; prohibition; growth in the KKK; the Tulsa Race Massacre; the Scopes trial; the National Origins act, inspired by eugenic concerns, restricting immigration to the US; how Fisher developed key statistical concepts for psychological research while working at a fertilizer company; Pavlov’s work; the sex scandal that ended John Watson’s academic career; the rise of child guidance clinics, psychoanalytic clinics, and university counseling centers; and the religious journey of Carl Rogers (the first psychologist to develop a theory of psychotherapy).

Chapter 15: Decade of 1930

(57 minutes) The depression; the Night of Broken Glass; US rejection of 900 Jewish refugees on board the SS St. Louis fleeing from Nazi Germany; the Nanjing Massacre; the practice of redlining to restrict housing for Black people; harm caused by the Tuskegee Alabama study of Syphilis in Black men; Franklin Frazier’s book on the “Negro Family in the United States;” B. F. Skinner’s work on operant conditioning; the fight between Ronald Fisher and Egon Pearson that led to the practice of “significance testing” in modern research; the extent to which clinical psychology was still focused on intelligence testing; Carl Rogers work at the Rochester child guidance clinic, and the nature of psychotherapy at the time as indicated by Rogers’ book, “The Clinical Treatment of the Problem Child.”

Chapter 16: Decade of 1940

(76 minutes) World War II; the development and use of lobotomies, insulin coma therapy, and electrical convulsive therapy to treat mental illness; the Mamie Clark and Kenneth Clark doll study; how World War II produced a new form of clinical psychology focused on the provision of psychotherapy (called the Boulder Model); the growth of psychodynamic theories for psychotherapy proposed by famous psychiatrists (Harry Stack Sullivan, Frieda Fromm-Richmann, Melanie Klein, Ronald Fairbairn); the beginning of Carl Rogers’ academic career where he ridiculed colleagues, secretly concealed microphones to conduct the first psychological studies on psychotherapy, and abandoned one of his clients.

Chapter 17: Decade of 1950

(43 minutes) Fears of communism; the Korean War; rock and roll music and cultural appropriation; the beginning of a Civil Rights movement (Emmitt Till and Rosa Parks); the supreme court “Brown versus Board of Education” decision that ruled against segregated schools (albeit for a racist reason); the Solomon Ash line judgement conformity study; introduction of antipsychotic medication; Han Eysenck’s paper claiming that psychotherapy has no effect; the beginning of Behavior Therapy (Joseph Wolpe and systematic desensitization); the beginning of Family Systems theory to treat families with a child diagnosed with schizophrenia.

Chapter 18: Decade of 1960

(74 minutes) Community Mental Health Center act (the depopulation of asylums and increase in homelessness); Martin Luther King and the Birmingham Campaign; the Civil Rights and Voting Rights acts; The Race Discrimination riots; the Gulf of Tonkin event and the Vietnam War; protests against the Vietnam War; hippie counter-culture; Richard Nixon’s use of racism in politics; Stanley Milgram’s study on obedience to authority; Albert Bandura’s bobo doll study; Martin Seligman’s learned helplessness studies; the founding of the Association for Advancement of Behavior Therapy; the beginning of cognitive therapy (Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck); the development of Bowen’s family therapy and Gestalt psychotherapy; Carl Rogers’ exit from academics, unscrupulous behavior, and alcohol use; the beginning of clinical Psy.D. programs and the founding of the clinical graduate program at Baylor University.