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AN INTRODUCTION TO SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY WILLIAM MCDOUGALL DSC FRS FELLOW OF CORPUS CHRISTI COLLEGE AND READER IN MENTAL PHILOSOPHY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD Fourteenth Edition with Three Supplementary Chapters Batoche Books Kitchener 2001 William McDougall 18717193 8 Originally published by Methuen amp Co Ltd London 1919 This edition published by Batoche Books 52 Eby Street South Kitchener Ontario N2G 3L1 Canada email batochegtonet Contents Preface to the Fourte nth Edition 5 ChapterI I t 39 quot 13 Section I The Mental Characters of Man of Primary Importance for His Life in Society 26 Chapter II The Nature of Instincts and Their Place in the Constitu tion of the Human Mind 26 Chapter III The Principal Instincts and the Primary Emotions of Man 42 Chapter IV Some General or NonSpeci c Innate Tendencies 69 Chapter V The Nature of the Sentiments and the Constitution of Some of the Complex Emotions 90 ChapterVI The 39 r nfthe quot t 115 Chapter VII The Growth of Selfconsciousness and of the Self Regarding Sentiment 124 Chapter VIII The Advance to the Higher Plane of Social Conduct 148 Chapter IXVolition 160 Section II The Operation of the Primary Tendencies of the Human Mind in the Life of Societies Chapter X The Reproductive and the Parental Instincts Chapter XI The Instinct of Pugnacity Chapter XII The Gregarious Instinct 203 Chapter XIII The Instincts through which Religious Conceptions Affect Social Life 207 Chapter XIV The Instincts of Acquisition and Construction 218 Chapter XV Imitation Play and Habit 220 Supplementary Chapter I Theories of Action 237 Supplementary Chapter II The Sex Instinct 259 Supplementary Chapter III The Derived Emotions 285 Notes 30 l Preface to the Fourteenth Edition In this little book I have attempted to deal with a difficult branch of psychology in a way that shall make it intelligible and interesting to any cultivated reader and that shall imply no previous familiarity with psy chological treatises on his part for I hope that the book may be of ser vice to students of all the social sciences by providing them with the minimum of psychological doctrine that is an indispensable part of the equipment for work in any of these sciences I have not thought it neces sary to enter into a discussion of the exact scope of social psychology and of its delimitation from sociology or the special social sciences for I believe that such questions may be left to solve themselves in the course of time with the advance of the various branches of science concerned I would only say that I believe social psychology to offer for research a vast and fertile eld which has been but little worked hitherto and that in this book I have attempted to deal only with its most fundamental problems those the solution of which is a presupposition of all profit able work in the various branches of the science If I have severely criticised some of the views from whichI dissent and have connected these views with the names of writers who have maintained them it is because I believe such criticism to be a great aid to cleamess of exposition and also to be much needed in the present state of psychology the names thus made use of were chosen because the bearers of them are authors well known for their valuable contribu tions to mental science I hope that this brief acknowledgment may serve as an apology to any of them under whose eyes my criticisms may fall I owe also some apology to my fellowworkers for the somewhat dog matic tone I have adopted I would not be taken to believe that my utter ances upon any of the questions dealt with are infallible or incapable of 6 William McDougall being improved upon but repeated expressions of deference and of the sense of my own uncertainty would be out of place in a semipopular work of this character and would obscure the course of my exposition Although I have tried to make this book intelligible and useful to those who are not professed students of psychology it is by no means a mere dishing up of current doctrines for popular consumption and it may add to its usefulness in the hands of professional psychologists if I indicate here the principal points which to the best of my belief are original contributions to psychological doctrine In Chapter II I have tried to render fuller and clearer the concep tions of instinct and of instinctive process from both the psychical and the nervous sides In Chapter III I have elaborated a principle brie y enunciated in a previous work which is I believe of the rst importance for the under standing of the life of emotion and actionithe principle namely that all emotion is the affective aspect of instinctive process The adoption of this principle leads me to de ne emotion more strictly and narrowly than has been done by other writers and I have used it as a guide in attempting to distinguish the more important of the primary emotions In Chapter IV I have combated the current view that imitation is to be ascribed to an instinct of imitation and I have attempted to give greater precision to the conception of suggestion and to de ne the prin cipal conditions of suggestibility I have adopted a view of the most simple and primitive form of sympathy that has been previously enunci ated by Herbert Spencer and others and have proposed what seems to be the only possible theory of the way inwhich sympathetic induction of emotion takes place I have then suggested a modi cation of Professor Groos s theory of play and in this connection have indulged in a specu lation as to the peculiar nature and origin of the emulative impulse In Chapter V I have elaborated the conception of a sentiment which is a relatively novel one Since this is the key to all the construc tive as contrasted with the more purely analytical part of the book I desire to state as clearly as possible its relations to kindred conceptions of other authors In the preface to the rst edition of this bookI attrib uted the conception of the sentiments which was expounded in the text to Mr A F Shand But on the publication of his important work on The Foundations of Character in the year 1914 I found that the con ception I had developed differed very importantly from his as expounded at length in that work I had to some extent misinterpreted the very brief An Introduction to Social Psycholo gy 7 statements of his earlier publications and had read into them my own meaning Although I still recognise that Mr Shand has the merit of having first clearly shown the need of psychology for some such con ception I must in the interests of truth point out that my conception of the sentiment and its relation to the emotion is so different from his as to be in reality a rival doctrine rather than a development of it Looking back I can now see that the germ of my conception was contained in and derived by me from Professor Stout s chapter on Emotions in his lVIanual of Psychology At the time of writing the book I was not acquainted with the work of Freud and Jung and the other psychoana lysts And I have been grati ed to nd that the workers of this important school approaching psychological problems from the point of view of mental pathology have independently arrived at a conception which is almost identical with my notion of the sentiment This is the conception of the complex which now occupies a position of great importance in psychoanalytic literature Arrived at and still used mainly in the at tempt to understand the processes at work in the minds of neurotic pa tients it has been recognised by some recent writers on mental pathol ogy notably Dr Bernard Hart that the complex or something very like it is not a feature of mental structure confined to the minds of neurotic patients and they are beginning to use the term in this wider sense as denoting those structural features of the normal mind whichI have called sentiments It would Iventure to suggest contribute to the development of our psychological terminology if it could be agreed to restrict the term complex to those pathological or morbid sentiments in connexion with which it was rst used and to use sentiment as the wider more general term to denote all those acquired conjunctions of ideas with emotionalconative tendencies or dispositions the acquisition and operating of which play so great a part both in normal and morbid mental development In Chapter V I have analysed the principal complex emotions in the light of the conception of the sentiment and of the principle laid down in Chapter II respecting the relation of emotion to instinct The analyses reached are in many respects novel and I venture to think that though they may need much correction in detail they have the merit of having been achieved by a method very much superior to the one commonly pursued the latter being that of introspective analysis unaided by any previous determination of the primary emotions by the comparative method 8 William McDougall In Chapters VI VII VIII and IX I have applied the doctrine of the sentiments and the results reached in the earlier chapters to the descrip tion of the organisation of the life of emotion and impulse and have built upon these foundations an account which is more de nite than any other with whichI am acquainted Attention may be drawn to the ac count offered of the nature of active or developed sympathy but the principal novelty contained in these chapters is what may perhaps with out abuse of the phrase be called a theory of volition and a sketch of the development of character conceived as consisting in the organisation of the sentiments in one harmonious system Of the heterogeneous assortment of ideas presented in the second section of the book I nd it impossible to say what and how much is original No doubt almost all of them derive from a moderately exten sive reading of anthropological and sociological literature Since the original publication of this bookI have added three supple mentary chapters one on Theories of Action to the fth edition in 1912 one On the Sex Instinct to the eighth edition in 1914 and the third on The Derived Emotions to the present edition These addi tional chapters give the work I think more the character of a complete treatise on the active side of man s nature a character at which I had not aimed in the first instance for I aimed chie y at setting out my own views so far as they seemed to me to be novel and original I feel now that yet another chapter is required to complete the work namely one on habit and I hope to attempt this as soon as Imay achieve some degree of cleamess on the subject in my own mind Since the rst publication of this book there have appeared several books dealing in part with the same topics and offering some criticism of my views Of these I have found three especially interesting namely Mr Shand s Foundations of Character Professor Thorndike s Original Nature of Man and Dr I Drever s Instinct in Man With lVIr Shand s aims and with his ran sacking of the poets for psychological evidence I have much sympathy butI nd myself at variance with him over many matters of fundamen tal importance for the understanding of character He regards the emo tions as highly complex innate dispositions within which the instincts are organised as merely so many sensorymotor dispositions to particu lar bodily movements A second important difference is that he regards the sentiments as innately organised systems of emotional dispositions thus for him both love and hate are innate sentiments and each of them consists of the dispositions of four emotions joy sorrow anger and An Introduction to Social Psycholo gy 9 fear linked together to form one system In my View the sentiments are acquired through individual experience and where two or more emo tional dispositions become conjoined in the structure of one sentiment as when fear and anger are combined in the sentiment of hate we have to regard these two dispositions as connected not directly with one an other but only indirectly through the association of each with the par ticular object of this particular sentiment of hatred Those are I think the most deeplying differences between his View and mine but there are many others which cannot be discussed here Some of these differ ences have been set out and discussed in a symposium on Instinct and the Emotions published in the Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society for 1914 Those readers who are interested in contrasting these Views may nd some assistance there Other differences are discussed at some length in the new chapter whichI have added to the present edition of this book Mr Thorndike s View of the constitution of man differs from mine in the opposite way from Mr Shand s While I postulate a few great primary instincts each capable like those of the animals of prompt ing and sustaining long trains of thought and action and while Mr Shand postulate still more complex systems of innate dispositions such as preformed sentiments of love and hate each comprising an array of emotional dispositions and many instincts in his sense of the word Mr Thorndike on the other hand lays it down that our innate constitu tion consists of nothing more than a vast number of simple re ex ten dencies How we are to conceive character and intellect as being built up from such elements I utterly fail to grasp This multitude of re exes correspond to Mr Shand s many instincts these two authors then agree in postulating a great number of very simple instinctive or re ex motor tendencies as given in the innate constitution they differ in that for lVIr Thorndike they are a mere unorganised crowd of discrete unconnected tendencies to movement while for Mr Shand they are somehow subor dinated to and organised within vast systems of emotional dispositions and still 1 39 39 J of39 quot I am encouraged to nd that my own position is midway between these extreme views that which postulates vastly complex innate organisations comprising many emotional and conative dispositions and that which denies all but the most rudimentary conative re exes to our innate constitution And I am further encouraged to believe that my scheme of our innate conative endowment approximates to the truth by Dr Drever s recent essay on Instinct in Man For Dr Drever has 10 William McDougall given us a careful historical survey of this question and after critically considering the various views that have been put forward comes to the conclusion that the one set out in this book is the most acceptable He is not content with it in certain particulars for example he would prefer to class as appetites certain of the tendencies which I have classed with the instincts such as the sex and the foodseeking tendencies butI am not convinced that it is possible to draw any clear line of separation and I would prefer to continue to regard instinct as the comprehensive class or genus of which the appetites are one species The distinction that Dr Drever would have us sharply draw may seem to be fairly clear in the human species but it seems to me to break down when we attempt to apply it at all rigidly to animal life What shall we say for example of the nestbuilding the brooding and the migratory tendencies of birds Are these instincts or appetites I am glad to note that Dr Drever agrees with me also in respect of the other most fundamental feature of this book namely he approves and accepts the conception of the sentiment that I have attempted to develop He however makes in this connexion a suggestion whichI am unable to accept I have proposed as the essential distinction between an instinct and a sentiment the view that in the instinct the connexion between the cognitive and the conative dispositions is innate while in the sentiment this connexion is acquired through individual experience Dr Drever proposes to substitute for this the distinction that the instinct disposition is perceptual that is involves only perceptual con sciousness while the sentiment disposition is ideational and is a sentiment because it is ideational I cannot accept this for two good reasons First I believe and have argued elsewhere that some instincts for example some of the complex nestbuilding instincts of birds are ideational Secondly some animals which seem to be incapable of ide ation or representation seem nevertheless capable of acquiring through experience 39 between particular 1 quot and certain con ativeaffective dispositions as when they acquire a lasting fear of an object towards which they are natively indifferent Such an acquired tendency is essentially of the nature of a sentiment andI cannot see why we should refuse to class it as a very simple perceptual sentiment Yet another of Dr Drever s suggestions I am unable to accept namely that ie instinct emotion is not an invariable accompaniment of instinctive activity but that the instinct interest is that the instinct emotion is due to what we previously called tension that is in the An Introduction to Social Psychologyl l ordinary case to arrest of the impulse to the denying of immediate satisfaction to the interest In maintaining this thesis Dr Drever seems to be putting forward independently a View which Professor Dewey has long taught ButI have never felt that Dewey s reasoning carried any conviction to my mind nor canI see that Drever has added anything to it If the instinctive disposition is so constituted as to be capable of generating the appropriate emotion when its impulse is denied immedi ate satisfaction it is difficult to see any theoretical ground for denying it this capacity when its activity is unobstructed nor does inspection of the facts seem to me to yield any more evidence in support of this view than the theoretical consideration of the possibilities Surely it is merely a matter of degree of intensity of the emotional excitement Some of Dr Drever s criticisms I am happy to be able to accept EspeciallyI have to admit that he has convicted me of injustice to some of the philosophers of the Scottish school notably Dugald Stewart and Hutcheson who had in many respects anticipated me in my view of the place of instinct in human nature In my defence I can only plead sheer ignorance and I may attempt to throw off the blame for this by saying that I had fallen a victim to the recent English fashion of overrating the German schools of philosophy and psychology at the expense of our British predeces sors I am grateful to Dr Drever for having corrected me in this matter In this part of psychology it is only by the consensus of opinion of competent psychologists that any view or hypothesis can be established or raised to the status of a theory that may con dently be taught or used as a basis for further constructive work And the only method of veri cation open to us is the application of our hypothesis to the control and guidance of human conduct especially in the two great elds of educa tion and medicine I am therefore much encouraged by the fact that in both these elds my sketch of the active side of human nature and its development in the individual has been found useful Several writers on 39 I J 39 39 39 39 39 its value and some of them have incorporated the essence of it in books written for students of edu cation I have noticed above that the doctrines of the psychoanalytic school contain much that coincides with my views This school has re alized the fundamental importance of instincts in human nature and though it has devoted an excessive and in some cases an almost exclu sive attention to the sex instinct it recognises the existence of other human instincts and is realising more fully that they as well as the sex instinct may play a part in the genesis of the psychoneuroses Other quot 11m P lZWilliam McDougall workers in this eld have applied and in Various degrees approved my sketch notably Dr Morton Prince who in his important work The Unconscious published in 1914 has made large use of it and fur nished new evidence in support of it In spite of these encouraging indi cations that the substance of this book presents an approximation to wards the truth it can by no means be claimed that it has secured gen eral acceptance The greater number of the more in uential of psycholo gists seem still to give a very small place to instinct in human nature admitting as instinct at most only some simple and rudimentary tenden cies to particular forms of movement such as the crawling sucking and lalling of the infant I may perhaps be allowed to testify that during ve years of military service devoted almost wholly to the care of cases of psychoneurosis among soldiers and their treatment by the various methods of psychotherapy Ihave found no reason to make any radical alterations in my view of the innate constitution of man Some critics have complained of this book that it hardly begins to treat of social psychology One writes He seems to do a great deal of packing in preparation for a journey on which he never starts I confess that the title of the book lays me open to this charge It should rather have been called Propaedeutic to Social Psychology for it was de signed to prepare the way for a treatise on Social Psychology When I came to attempt the writing of such a treatise I found that the psychol ogy of the active and emotional side of our nature was in so backward a condition that it was impossible to go on without first attempting to attain to some clear and generally acceptable account of the innate ten dencies of human nature and of their organization under the touch of individual experience to form the characters of individual men I hoped that this book would provide such an agreed basis for Social Psychol ogy In that I have been disappointed Its substance was more remote from contemporary opinion than I had supposed However in spite of this I have decided at last to start on the journey for which I have done my packing as thoroughly as my powers permit andI am glad to report that I have now in the press a book entitled The Group Mind which does actually make some attempt to deal with a part of the large eld of Social Psychology W McD Oxford September 1919 C h a pte r Introduction Among students of the social sciences there has always been a certain number who have recognised the fact that some knowledge of the hu man mind and of its modes of operation is an essential part of their equipment and that the successful development of the social sciences must be dependent upon the fulness and accuracy of such knowledge These propositions are so obviously true that any formal attempt to demonstrate them is super uous Those who do not accept them as soon as they are made will not be convinced of their truth by any chain of formal reasoning It is then a remarkable fact that psychology the science which claims to formulate the body of ascertained truths about the constitution and working of the mind and which endeavours to re ne and to add to this knowledge has not been generally and practically recognised as the essential common foundation on which all the social sciencesgethics economics political science philosophy of history sociology and cultural anthropology and the more special social sci ences such as the sciences of religion of law of education and of arti must be built up Of the workers in these sciences some like Carets and at the present time M Durkheim repudiate the claim of psychol ogy to such recognition Some do lip service to psychology but in prac tice ignore it and will sit down to write a treatise on morals or econom ics or any other of the social sciences cheerfully confessing that they know nothing of psychology A certain number perhaps the majority of recent writers on social topics recognise the true position of psychology but in practice are content to take as their psychological foundations the vague and extremely misleading psychology embodied in common speech with the addition of a few hasty assumptions about the mind made to 14 William McDougall suit their particular purposes There are signs however that this regret table state of affairs is about to pass away that psychology will before long be accorded in universal practice the position at the base of the social sciences which the more clearsighted have long seen that it ought to occupy Since this volume is designed to promote this change of practice it is tting that it should open with a brief inquiry into the causes of the anomalous state of affairs at present obtaining and with some indication of the way in which it is hoped that the change may be brought about For there can be no question that the lack of practical recognition of psychology by the workers in the social sciences has been in the main due to its deficiencies and that the only way of establishing it in its true place is to make good these de ciencies What then are these de cien cies and why have they so long persisted We may attempt very brie y to indicate the answers to these questions without presuming to appor tion any blame for the long continuance of these de ciencies between the professed psychologists and the workers in the social sciences The department of psycholo gy that is of primary importance for the social sciences is that which deals with the springs of human action the impulses and motives that sustain mental and bodily activity and regu late conduct and this of all the departments of psycholo gy is the one that has remained in the most backward state in which the greatest obscurity vagueness and confusion still reign The answers to such problems as the proper classi cation of conscious states the analysis of them into their elements the nature of these elements and the laws of the compounding of them have but little bearing upon the social sciences the same may be said of the range of problems connected with the rela tions of soul and body of psychical and physical process of conscious ness and brain processes and also of the discussion of the more purely intellectual processes of the way we arrive at the perception of relations of time and place or of likeness and difference of the classi cation and description of the intellectual processes of ideation conception com parison and abstraction and of their relations to one another Not these processes themselves but only the results or products of these pro cessesithe knowledge or system of ideas and beliefs achieved by them and the way in which these ideas and beliefs regulate conduct and deter mine social institutions and the relations of men to one another in soci ety are of immediate importance for the social sciences It is the mental forces the sources of energy which set the ends and sustain the course An Introduction to Social Psychology15 of all human activitygof which forces the intellectual processes are but the servants instruments or meansithat must be clearly de ned and whose history in the race and in the individual must be made clear before the social sciences can build upon a firm psychological founda tion Now it is with the questions of the former classes that psycholo gists have chie y concerned themselves and in regard to which they have made the most progress towards a consistent and generally accept able body of doctrine and they have unduly neglected these more so cially important problems This has been the result of several condi tions a result which we looking back upon the history of the sciences can see to have been inevitable It was inevitable that when men began to re ect upon the complex phenomena of social life they should have concentrated their attention upon the problems immediately presented and should have sought to explain them deductively from more or less vaguely conceived principles that they entertained they knew not why or how principles that were the formulations of popular conceptions slowly grown up in the course of countless generations and rendered more ex plicit but hardly less obscure by the labours of theologians and meta physicians And when in the eighteenth century and the early part of the nineteenth century the modern principles of scienti c method began to be generally accepted and to be applied to all or most objects of human speculation and the various social sciences began to be marked off from one another along the modern lines it was inevitable that the workers in each department of social science should have continued in the same way attempting to explain social phenomena from proximate principles which they falsely conceived to be fundamental rather than to obtain a deeper knowledge of the fundamental constitution of the human mind It was not to be expected that generations of workers whose primary in terest it was to lay down general rules for the guidance of human activ ity in the great elds of legislation of government of private and public conduct should have deliberately put aside the attempt to construct the sciences of these departments of life leaving them to the efforts of after coming generations while they devoted themselves to the preparatory work of investigating the individual mind in order to secure the basis of psychological truth on which the labours of their successors might rear the social sciences The problems confronting them were too urgent customs laws and institutions demanded theoretical justi cation and those who called out for social reform sought to strengthen their case with theoretical demonstrations of its justice and of its conformity with 16 William McDougall the accepted principles of human nature And even if these early workers in the social sciences had made this impossible selfdenying ordinance it would not have been possible for them to achieve the psychology that was needed For a science still more fundamental one whose connection with the social phenomena they sought to explain or justify was still more remote and obscure had yet to be createdi namely the science of biology It is only a comparative and evolutionary psychology that can provide the needed basis and this could not be created before the work of Darwin had convinced men of the continuity of human with animal evolution as regards all bodily characters and had prepared the way for the quickly following recogni tion of the similar continuity of man s mental evolution with that of the animal world Hence the workers in each of the social sciences approaching their social problems in the absence of any established body of psychological truth and being compelled to make certain assumptions about the mind made them ad hoc and in this way they provided the indispensable minimum of psychological doctrine required by each of them Many of these assumptions contained suf cient truth to give them a certain plau sibility but they were usually of such a sweeping character as to leave no room for and to disguise the need for more accurate and detailed psychological analysis And not only were these assumptions made by those who had not prepared themselves for the task by long years of study of the mind in all its many aspects and by the many possible avenues of approach but they were not made with the single hearted aim of dis covering the truth rather they were commonly made under the bias of an interest in establishing some normative doctrine the search for what is was clogged and misled at every step by the desire to estab lish some preconceived view as to what ought to be When then psy chology began very slowly and gradually to assert its status as an inde pendent science it found all that part of its province which has the most immediate and important bearing on the social sciences already occu pied by the fragmentary and misleading psychological assumptions of the workers in these sciences and these workers naturally resented all attempts of psychology to encroach upon the territory they had learned to look upon as their own for such attempts would have endangered their systems The psychologists endeavouring to de ne their science and to mark it off from other sciences were thus led to accept a too narrow view of An Introduction to Social Psychologyl7 its scope and methods and applications They were content for the most part to define it as the science of consciousness and to regard introspec tion as its only method for the introspective analysis and description of conscious states was a part of the proper work of psychology that had not been undertaken by any other of the sciences The insistence upon introspection as the one method of the science tended to prolong the predominance of this narrow and paralysing View of the scope of the science for the life of emotion and the play of motives is the part of our mental life which offers the least advantageous eld for introspective observation and description The cognitive or intellectual processes on the other hand present a rich and varied content of consciousness which lends itself well to introspective discrimination analysis and descrip tion in comparison with it the emotional and conative consciousness has but little variety of content and that little is extremely obscure and elusive of introspection Then shortly after the Darwinian ideas had revolutionised the bio logical sciences and when it might have been hoped that psychologists would have been led to take a wider view of their science and to assert its rights to its whole eld the introduction of the experimental methods of introspection absorbed the energies of a large proportion of the work ers in the resurvey by the new and more accurate methods of the ground already worked by the method of simple introspection Let us note some instances of the unfortunate results of this prema ture annexation of the most important and obscure region of psychology by the sciences which should in the logical order of things have found the fundamental psychological truths ready to their hands as a firm ba sis for their constructions Ethics affords perhaps the most striking example for any writer on this subject necessarily encounters psychological problems on every hand and treatises on ethics are apt to consist very largely of amateur psychologising Among the earlier moralists the lack of psychological insight led to such doctrines as that of certain Stoics to the effect that the wise and good man should seek to eradicate the emotions from his bosom or that of Kant to the effect that the wise and good man should be free from desire Putting aside however these quaint notions of the earlier writers we may note that in modern times three false and hasty assumptions of the kind stigmatised above have played leading roles and have furnished a large part of the matter with which ethical contro versy has been busied during the nineteenth century First in importance 18 William McDou gall perhaps as a topic for controversy was the doctrine known as psycho logical hedonism the doctrine that the motives of all human activity are the desire of pleasure and the aversion to pain Hand in hand with this went the false assumption that happiness and pleasure are synonymous terms These two false assumptions were adopted as the psychological foundation of utilitarianism they rendered that doctrine repugnant to many of the best minds and drove them to fall back upon vague and mystical conceptions Of these the old conception of a special faculty of moral intuition a conscience a moral sense or instinct was the most important and this was the third of the trio of false psychological as sumptions on which ethical systems were based Many of those who adopted some form of this last assumption were in the habit of supple menting it by similar assumptions hastily made to afford explanations of any tendencies they noted in human conduct which their master prin ciple was inadequate to meet they postulated strange instincts of all kinds as lightly and easily as a conjurer produces eggs from a hat or a phrenologist discovers bumps on a head It is instructive to note that as recently as the year 1893 the late Professor H Sidgwick one of the leaders of the ethical thought of his time still inverted the problem like his predecessors he assumed that moral or reasonable action is normal and natural to man in virtue of some vaguely conceived principle and in all seriousness wrote an ar ticle1 to prove that unreasonable action is possible and is actually achieved occasionally and to explain if possible this strange anomalous fact He quotes Bentham s dictum that on the occasion of every act he exercises every humanbeing is led to pursue that line of conduct which according to his view of the case taken by him at the moment will be in the highest degree contributory to his own greatesthappiness He points out that although J S Mill admitted certain exceptions to this prin ciple his general view was that to desire anything except in propor tion as the idea of it is pleasant is a physical impossibility So that according to this school any action of an individual that does not tend to produce for him the maximum of pleasure can only arise from an error of judgment as to the relative quantities of pleasure that will be secured by different lines of action And since according to this school all actions ought to be directed to securing a maximum of pleasure action of any other kind is not only unreasonable action but also im moral action for it is action in a way other than the way in which the individual knows he ought to act Sidgwick then goes on to show that the An Introduction to Social Psychologyl9 doctrine that unreasonable action or wilful action not in accordance with what the individual knows that he ought to do is exceptional para doxical or abnormal is not peculiar to the utilitarians but is common also to theft opponents he takes as an example T H Green who still lays down as broadly as Bentham that every person in every moral ac tion virtuous or vicious presents to himself some possible state or achievement of his own as for the time his greatest good and acts for the sake of that good and that this is how he ought to act So that Green only differs from Bentham and Mill in putting good in the place of pleasure and for the rest makes the same grotesquely false assump tion as they do Sidgwick then instead of attacking and rejecting as radically false the conception of human motives common to both classes of his predecessors goes on in all seriousness to offer a psychological explanation of the paradox that men do sometimes act unreasonably and otherwise than they ought to act That is to say Sidgwick like those whom he criticises accepts the doctrine that men normally and in the vast majority of cases act reasonably and as they ought to act invirtue of some unexplained principle of their constitution and de nes as a problem for solution the fact that they sometimes act otherwise But the truth is that men are moved by a variety of impulses whose nature has been determined through long ages of the evolutionary process without reference to the life of men in civilised societies and the psychological problem we have to solve and with which this book is mainly con cerned isiHow can we account for the fact that men so moved ever come to act as they ought or morally and reasonably One is driven to suppose that the minds of the moral philosophers who maintain these curious views as to the sources and nature of human conduct are either constitutionally devoid of the powerful impulses that so often move ordinary men to actions which they know to be morally wrong and against their true interests and destructive of their happiness or so completely moralised by strict selfdiscipline that these powerful impulses are completely subordinated and hardly make themselves felt But if either alternative is true it is unfortunate that their peculiar con stitutions should have led these philosophers to base the social sciences on profoundly fallacious psychological doctrines Political economy suffered hardly less from the crude nature of the psychological assumptions from which it professed to deduce the expla nations of its facts and its prescriptions for economic legislation It would be a libel not altogether devoid of truth to say that the classical politi 20 William McDougall cal economy was a tissue of false conclusions drawn from false psycho logical assumptions And certame the recent progress in economic doc trine has largely consisted in or resulted from the recognition of the need for a less inadequate psychological basis An example illustrating these two facts will be not out of place The great assumption of the classical political economy was that man is a reasonable being who always intelligently seeks his own good or is guided in all his activities by enlightened selfinterest and this was usually combined with the psychological hedonism which played so large a part in degrading utili tarian ethics that is to say good was identi ed with pleasure From these assumptions which contained sufficient truth to be plausible it was deduced logically enough that free competition in an open market will secure a supply of goods at the lowest possible rate But mankind is only a little bit reasonable and to a great extent very unintelligently moved in quite unreasonable ways The economists had neglected to take account of the suggestibility of men which renders the arts of the advertiser of the pushing of goods generally so profitable and effec tive Only on taking this character of men into account can we under stand such facts as that sewing machines which might be sold at a fair pro t for 5 nd a large sale at 12 while equally good ones are sold in the same market at less than halfthe price The same deduction as to competition and prices has been signally falsi ed by those cases inwhich the establishment by trusts or corporations of virtual monopolies in ar ticles of universal consumption has led to a reduction of the market prices of those commodities or again by the fact that so enormous a proportion of the price paid for goods goes into the pockets of small shopkeepers and other economically pernicious middlemen As an example of the happy effect of the recent introduction of less crude psychology into economic discussions it will suf ce to mention Mrs Bosanquet s work on The Standard of Life In political science no less striking illustrations may be found What other than an error due to false psychological assumptions was the cos mopolitanism of the lVIanchester school with its con dent prophecy of the universal brotherhood of man brought about by enlightened self interest assigning to each region and people the work for which it was best suited This prophecy has been notoriously falsi ed by a great outburst of national spirit which has played the chief part in shaping European history during the last halfcentury Again in the philosophy of history we have the same method of An Introduction to Social Psychology21 deduction from hasty incomplete and misleading if not absolutely false assumptions as to the human mind We may take as a fair example the assumptions that V Cousin made the foundation of his philosophy of history Cousin after insisting strongly upon the fundamental impor tance of psychological analysis for the interpretation of history pro ceeds as follows2 quotThe various manifestations and phases of social life are all traced back to tendencies of human nature from which they spring from ve fundamental wants each of which has corresponding to it a general idea The idea of the useful gives rise to mathematical and physical science industry and political economy the idea of the just to civil society the State and jurisprudence the idea of the beautiful to art the idea of God to religion and worship and the idea of truth in itself in its highest degree and under its purest form to philosophy These ideas are argued to be simple and indecomposable to coexist in every mind to constitute the whole foundation of humanity and to follow in the order mentioned No better illustration of the truth of the foregoing remarks could be found We have here the spectacle of a philosopher who ex erted a great influence on the thought of his own country and who rightly conceived the relation of psycholo gy to the social sciences but who in the absence of any adequate psychology contents himselfwith concoct ing on the spur of the moment the most imsy substitute for it in the form of these ve assumptions As for the philosophies of history that make no pretence of a psy chological foundation they are suf ciently characterised by M Fouillee who when writing of the development of sociology says Elle est nee en effet d une etude en grande partie mythique ou poetique je veuX parler de la philosophie de l histoire telle que les metaphysiciens ou les theologiens l ont d abord concue et qui est a la sociologie positive ce que l alchimie fut a la chimie l astrologie a l astronomie 3 From the science of jurisprudence we may take as a last illustra tion the retributive doctrine of punishment which is still held by a con siderable number of writers This barbarous conception of the grounds on which punishment is justi ed arises naturally from the doctrine of freewill to any one who holds this doctrine in any thoroughgoing form there can be no other rational view of punishment than the retributive for since according to this assumption where human action la con cerned the future course of events is not determined by the present punishment cannot be administered in the forwardlookin g attitude with a view to deterrence or to moral improvement but only in the backward 22William McDougall looking vengeful attitude of retribution The fuller becomes our insight into the springs of human conduct the more impossible does it become to maintain this antiquated doctrine so that here too progress depends upon the improvement of psychology One might take each of the social sciences in turn and illustrate in each case the great need for a true doctrine of human motives But instead of doing that I will merely sum up on the issue of the work of the nineteenth century as follows 7During the last century most of the workers in the social sciences were of two partiesithose on the one hand who with the utilitarians reduced all motives to the search for pleasure and the avoidance of pain and those on the other hand who recoiling from this hedonistic doctrine sought the mainspring of con duct in some vaguely conceived intuitive faculty variously named the conscience the moral faculty instinct or sense Before the close of the century the doctrines of both of these parties were generally seen to be fallacious but no satisfactory substitute for them was generally accepted and by the majority of psychologists nothing better was offered to ll the gap than a mere word ie will or some such phrase as the ten dency of ideas to selfrealisation On the other hand Darwin in the Descent of Man 1871 first enunciated the true doctrine of human motives and showed how we must proceed relying chie y upon the comparative and natural history method if we would arrive at a fuller understanding of them But Darwin s own account suffered from the deference he paid under protest to the doctrine of psychological hedo nism still dominant at that time and his lead has been followed by comparatively few psychologists and but little has yet been done to carry forward the work he began and to re ne upon his rst rough sketch of the history of human motives Enough has been said to illustrate the point of view from which this volume has been written and to enforce the theme of this introductory chapter namely that psychologists must cease to be content with the sterile and narrow conception of their science as the science of con sciousness and must boldly assert its claim to be the positive science of the mind in all its aspects and modes of functioning or as I would prefer to say the positive science of conduct or behaviour4 Psychology must not regard the introspective description of the stream of conscious ness as its whole task but only as a preliminary part of its work Such introspective description such pure psychology can never constitute a science or at least can never rise to the level of an explanatory sci An Introduction to Social Psychology23 ence and it can never in itself be of any great value to the social sci ences The basis required by all of them is a comparative and physi ological psychology relying largely on objective methods the observa tion of the behaviour of men and of animals of all varieties under all possible conditions of health and disease It must take the largest pos sible view of its scope and functions and must be an evolutionary natu ral history of mind Above all it must aim at providing a full and accu rate account of those most fundamental elements of our constitution the innate tendencies to thought and action that constitute the native basis of the mind Happily this more generous conception of psychology is beginning to prevail The mind is no longer regarded as a mere tabula raw or magic mirror whose function it is passively to receive impressions from the outer world or to throw imperfect re ections of its objectsi a row of moving shadowshapes that come and go Nor are we any longer content to supplement this Lockian conception of mind with only two principles of intrinsic activity that of the association and reproduction of ideas and that of the tendency to seek pleasure and to avoid pain The discovery is being made that the old psychologising was like the playing of Hamlet with the Prince of Denmark left out or like describing steamengines while ignoring the fact of the presence and fundamental role of the fire or other source of heat On every hand we hear it said that the static descriptive purely analytic psychology must give place to a dynamic functional voluntaristic view of mind A second very important advance of psychology towards useful ness is due to the increasing recognition of the extent to which the adult human mind is the product of the moulding in uence exerted by the social environment and of the fact that the strictly individual human mind with which alone the older introspective and descriptive psychol ogy concemed itself is an abstraction merely and has no real existence It is needless to attempt to describe the many and complex in u ences through which these changes are being effected It suffices to note the happy fact and brie y to indicate the way in which this book aims to contribute its mite towards the building up of a psychology that will at last furnish the much needed basis of the social sciences and of the comprehensive science of sociology The rst section begins with the elucidation of that part of the native basis of the mind which is the source of all our bodily and mental activity In Chapter II I have at tempted to render as clear and definite as possible the conception of an 24 William McDougall instinct and to make clear the relation of instinct to mental process and the fundamental importance of the instincts in the third chapterI have sought to enumerate and brie y to de ne the principal human instincts and in the fourth I have de ned certain general functional tendencies which though they are sometimes classed with the instincts are of a different nature I have not thought it necessary to make any elaborate criticism of psychological hedonism as that doctrine is now sufficiently exploded In the following chapters of this section I have attempted to describe in general terms the way in which these native tendencies of uur quot quot 1 mt 39 39 quot fthe life ofemotion and action to show how under the in uence of the social environment they become gradually organised in systems of increasing complexity while they remain unchanged as regards their most essential attributes to show that although it is no longer easy to trace to their source the complex manifestations of human character and will it is nevertheless possible to sketch in rough outline the course of this development and to exhibit human volition of the highest moral type as but a more complex conjunction of the mental forces which we may trace in the evolutionary scale far back into the animal kingdom This first section of the book deals then with the characters of the individual mind that are of prime importance for the social life of man Of this section it might be said that it is not properly a part of a social 1 39 39 V it is an I 39I l 39 39 p1 cliruiuary ofall social psychology and since no consistent and generally acceptable scheme of this kind has hitherto been furnished it was necessary to attempt it It may even be contended that it deals with the fundamental problem of social psychology For social psychology has to show how given the native propensities and capacities of the individual human mind all the complex mental life of societies is shaped by them and in turn reacts upon the course of their development and operation in the individual And of this task the primary and most essential part is the showing how the life of highly organised societies involving as it does high moral qualities of character and conduct on the part of the great mass of men is at all possible to creatures that have been evolved from the animal world whose nature bears so many of the marks of this animal origin and whose principal springs of activity are essentially similar to those of the higher animals For as Dr Rashdall well says the raw material so to speak of Virtue and Vice is the samei 18 desires which in themselves abstracted from their relation to the higher self are not ei 41 I An Introduction to Social Psychology25 ther moral or immoral but simply nonmoral 5 That is to say the fun damental problem of social psychology is the moralisation of the indi vidual by the society into which he is born as a creature in which the nonmoral and purely egoistic tendencies are so much stronger than any altruistic tendencies This moralisation or socialisation of the individual is then the essential theme of this section In Section II I have brie y indicated some of the ways in which the principal instincts and primary tendencies of the human mind play their parts in the lives of human societies my objectbeing to bring home to the reader the truth that the understanding of the life of society in any or all of its phases presupposes a knowledge of the constitution of the hu man mind a truth which though occasionally acknowledged in prin ciple is in practice so frequently ignored S ect i o n The Mental Characters of Man of Primary Importance for His Life in Society C h a pter The Nature of Instincts and Their Place in the Constitution of the Human Mind The human mind has certain innate or inherited tendencies which are the essential springs or motive powers of all thought and action whether individual or collective and are the bases from which the character and will of individuals and of nations are gradually developed under the guidance of the intellectual faculties These primary innate tendencies have different relative strengths in the native constitutions of the indi viduals of different races and they are favoured or checked in very different degrees by the very different social circumstances of men in different stages of culture but they are probably common to the men of every race and of every age If this view that human nature has every where and at all times this common native foundation can be estab lished it will afford a muchneeded basis for speculation on the history of the development of human societies and human institutions For so long as it is possible to assume as has often been done that these innate tendencies of the human mind have varied greatly from age to age and from race to race all such speculation is founded on quicksand and we cannot hope to reach views of a reasonable degree of certainty The evidence that the native basis of the human mind constituted by the sum of these innate tendencies has this stable unchanging char acter is afforded by comparative psychology For we nd not only that these tendencies in stronger or weaker degree are present in men of all An Introduction to Social Psychology27 races now living on the earth but that we may find all of them or at least the germs of them in most of the higher animals Hence there can be little doubt that they played the same essential part in the minds of the primitive human stock or stocks and in the prehuman ancestors that bridged the great gap in the evolutionary series between man and the animal world These allimportant and relatively unchanging tendencies which form the basis of human character and will are of two main classesi l The speci c tendencies or instincts 2 The general or nonspeci c tendencies arising out of the consti tution of mind and the nature of mental process in general when mind and mental process attain a certain degree of complexity in the course of evolution In the present and seven following chapters I propose to define the more important of these speci c and general tendencies and to sketch very brie y the way in which they become systematised in the course of characterformation and in the second section of this volume some at tempt will be made to illustrate the special importance of each one for the social life of man Contemporary writers of all classes make frequent use of the words instinc and instinctive but with very few exceptions they use them so loosely that they have almost spoilt them for scienti c purposes On the one hand the adjective instinctive is commonly applied to every human action that is performed without deliberate re exion on the other hand the actions of animals are popularly attributed to instinct and in this connexion instinct is vaguely conceived as a mysterious faculty utterly different in nature from any human faculty which Providence has given to the brutes because the higher faculty of reason has been denied them Hundreds of passages might be quoted from contemporary authors even some of considerable philosophical culture to illustrate how these two words are used with a minimum of meaning generally with the effect of disguising from the writer the obscurity and incoher ence of his thought The following examples will serve to illustrate at once this abuse and the hopeless laxity with which even cultured au thors habitually make use of psychological terms One philosophical writer on social topics tells us that the power of the State is dependent on the instinct of subordination which is the outcome of the desire of the people more or less distinctly conceived for certain social ends another asserts that ancestorworship has survived amongst the West 28 William McDougall em peoples as a mere tradition and instinc a medical writer has re cently asserted that if a drunkard is fed on fruit he will become instinc tively a teetotaler a political writer tells us that e Russian people is rapidly acquiring a political instinct from a recent treatise on morals by a distinguished philosopher two passages fair samples of a large number may be taken one describes the notion that blood demands blood as an inveterate instinct of primitive humanity the other af fums that punishment originates in the instinct of vengeance another of our most distinguished philosophers asserts that popular instinct maintains that there is a theory and a justi cation of social coercion latent in the term selfgovernment As our last illustration we may take the following passage from an avowedly psychological article in a recent number of the Spectator The instinct of contradiction like the instinct of acquiescence is inbom These instincts are very deeprooted and absolutely incorrigible either from within or from without Both springing as they do from a radical defect from a want of original inde pendence they affect the whole mind and character These are favourable examples of current usage and they justify the statement that these words instinct and instinctive are commonly used as a cloak for ignorance when a writer attempts to explain any individual or collective action that he fails or has not tried to under stand Yet there can be no under standing of the development of individual character or of individual and collective conduct unless the nature of instinct and its scope and func tion in the human mind are clearly and firmly grasped It would be difficult to find any adequate mention of instincts in treatises on human psychology written before the middle of last century But the work of Darwin and of Herbert Spencer has lifted to some ex tent the veil of mystery from the instincts of animals and has made the problem of the relation of instinct to human intelligence and conduct one of the most widely discussed in recent years Among professed psychologists there is now fair agreement as to the usage of the terms instinct and instinctive By the great majority they are used only to denote certain innate specific tendencies of the mind that are common to all members of any one species racial charac ters that have been slowly evolved in the process of adaptation of spe cies to their environment and that can be neither eradicated from the mental constitution of which they are innate elements nor acquired by individuals in the course of their lifetime A few writers of whom Pro fessor Wundt is the most prominent apply the terms to the very strongly An Introduction to Social Psychology29 xed acquired habits of action that are more commonly and properly described as secondarily automatic actions as well as to the innate spe ci c tendencies The former usage seems in every way preferable and is adopted in these pages But even among quot r in this stricter sense there are still great differences of opinion as to the place of in stinct in the human mind All agree that man has been evolved from pre human ancestors whose lives were dominated by instincts but some hold that as man s intelligence and reasoning powers developed his instincts atrophied until now in civilised man instincts persist only as troublesome vestiges of his prehuman state vestiges that are compa rable to the vermiforrn appendix and which like the latter might with advantage be removed by the surgeon s knife if that were at all pos sible Others assign them a more prominent place in the constitution of the human mind for they see that intelligence as it increased with the evolution of the higher animals and of man did not supplant and so lead to the atrophy of the instincts but rather controlled and modified their operation and some like G H Schneider and William James main tain that man has at least as many instincts as any of the animals and assign them a leading part in the determination of human conduct and mental process This last view is now rapidly gaining ground and this volume I hope may contribute in some slight degree to promote the recognition of the full scope and function of the human instincts for this recognition will I feel sure appear to those who come after us as the most important advance made by psychology in our time Instinctive actions are displayed in their purest form by animals not very high in the scale of intelligence In the higher vertebrate animals few instinctive modes of behaviour remain purely instinctiveii 8 un modi ed by intelligence and by habits acquired under the guidance of intelligence or by imitation And even the human infant whose intelli gence remains but little developed for so many months after birth per forms few purely instinctive actions because in the human being the instincts although innate are with few exceptions undeveloped in the first months of life and only ripen or become capable of functioning at various periods throughout the years from infancy to puberty Insect life affords perhaps the most striking examples of purely in stinctive action There are many instances of insects that invariably lay their eggs in the only places where the grubs when hatched will find the food they need and can eat or where the larvae will be able to attach II I u I WIlU 30 William McDougall themselves as parasites to some host in a way that is necessary to their survival In such cases it is clear that the behaviour of the parent is determined by the impressions made on its senses by the appropriate objects or places eg the smell of decaying esh leads the carrion y to deposit its eggs upon it the sight or odour of some particular ower leads another to lay its eggs among the ovules of the ower which serve as food to the grubs Others go through more elaborate trains of action as when the masonwasp lays its eggs in a mudnest lls up the space with caterpillars which it paralyses by means of welldirected stings and seals it up so that the caterpillars remain as a supply of fresh ani mal food for the young which the parent will never see and of whose needs it can have no knowledge or idea Among the lower vertebrate animals also instinctive actions hardly at all modi ed by intelligent control are common The young chick runs to his mother in response to a call of peculiar quality and nestles beneath her the young squirrel brought up in lonely captivity when nuts are given him for the rst time opens and eats some and buries others with all the movements characteristic of his species the kitten in the presence of a dog or a mouse assumes the characteristic feline atti tudes and behaves as all his fellows of countless generations have be haved Even so intelligent an animal as the domesticated dog behaves on some occasions in a purely instinctive fashion when for example a terrier comes across the trail of a rabbit his hunting instinct is immedi ately aroused by the scent he becomes blind and deaf to all other im pressions as he follows the trail and then when he sights his quarry breaks out into the yapping which is peculiar to occasions of this kind His wild ancestors hunted in packs and under those conditions the characteristic bark emitted on sighting the quarry served to bring his fellows to his aid but when the domesticated terrier hunts alone his excited yapping can but facilitate the escape of his quarry yet the old social instinct operates too powerfully to be controlled by his moderate intelligence These few instances of purely instinctive behaviour illustrate clearly its nature In the typical case some senseimpression or combination of 39 l excites r 39 mentor train of movements which is the same in all individuals of the species and on all similar occasions and in general the behaviour so occasioned is of a kind either to promote the welfare of the individual animal or of the community to which he belongs or to secure the per An Introduction to Social Psychology3 l petuation of the species8 In treating of the instincts of animals writers have usually described them as innate tendencies to certain kinds of action and Herbert Spencer s widely accepted definition of instinctive action as compound re ex ac tion takes account only of the behaviour or movements to which in stincts give rise But instincts are more than innate tendencies or dis positions to certain kinds of movement There is every reason to believe that even the most purely instinctive action is the outcome of a distinctly mental process one which is incapable of being described in purely mechanical terms because it is a psychophysical process involving psychical as well as physical changes and one which like every other mental process has and can only be fully described in terms of the three aspects of all mental processithe cognitive the affective and the conative aspects that is to say every instance of instinctive behaviour involves a knowing of some thing or object a feeling in regard to it and a striving towards or away from that object We cannot of course directly observe the threefold psychical as pect of the psychophysical process that issues in instinctive behaviour but we are amply justi ed in assuming that it invariably accompanies the process in the nervous system of which the instinctive movements are the immediate result a process which being initiated on stimulation of some sense organ by the physical impressions received from the ob ject travels up the sensory nerves traverses the brain and descends as an orderly or coordinated stream of nervous impulses along efferent nerves to the appropriate groups of muscles and other executive organs We are justi ed in assuming the cognitive aspect of the psychical pro cess because the nervous excitation seems to traverse those parts of the brain whose excitement involves the production of sensations or changes in the sensory content of consciousness we are justi ed in assuming the affective aspect of the psychical process because the creature exhibits unmistakable symptoms of feeling and emotional excitement and espe cially we are justi ed in assuming the conative aspect of the psychical process because all instinctive behaviour exhibits that unique mark of mental process a persistent striving towards the natural end of the pro cess That is to say the process unlike any merely mechanical process is not to be arrested by any suf cient mechanical obstacle but is rather intensified by any such obstacle and only comes to an end either when its appropriate goal is achieved or when some stronger incompatible tendency is excited or when the creature is exhausted by its persistent 32William McDougall efforts Now the psychophysical process that issues in an instinctive ac tion is initiated by a sense impression which usually is but one of many senseimpressions received at the same time and the fact that this one impression plays an altogether dominant part in determining the animal s behaviour shows that its effects are peculiarly favoured that the nervous system is peculiarly tted to receive and to respond to just that kind of impression The impression must be supposed to excite not merely detailed changes in the animal s field of sensation but a sensa tion or complex of sensations that has signi cance or meaning for the animal hence we must regard the instinctive process in its cognitive aspect as distinctly of the nature of perception however rudimentary In the animals most nearly allied to ourselves we can in many instances of instinctive behaviour clearly recognise the symptoms of some particu lar kind of emotion such as fear anger or tender feeling and the same symptoms always accompany any one kind of instinctive behaviour as when the cat assumes the defensive attitude the dog resents the intru sion of a strange dog or the hen tenderly gathers her brood beneath her wings We seem justi ed in believing that each kind of instinctive behaviour is always attended by some such emotional excitement how ever faint which in each case is speci c or peculiar to that kind of behaviour Analogy with our own experience justi es us also in as suming that the persistent striving towards its end which characterises mental process and distinguishes instinctive behaviour most clearly from mere re ex action implies some such mode of experience as we call conative the kind of experience which in its more developed forms is properly called desire or aversion but which in the blind form in which we sometimes have it and which is its usual form among the animals is a mere impulse or craving or uneasy sense of want Further we seem justi ed in believing that the continued obstruction of instinctive striv ing is always accompanied by painful feeling its successful progress towards its end39uy l 39 39 39 feeling and the 39 39 ofits end by a pleasurable sense of satisfaction An instinctive action then must not be regarded as simple or com pound re ex action if by re ex action we mean as is usually meant a movement caused by a sensestimulus and resulting from a sequence of merely physical processes in some nervous arc Nevertheless just as a re ex action implies the presence in the nervous system of the re ex nervous arc so the instinctive action also implies some enduring ner An Introduction to Social Psychology33 vous basis whose organisation is inherited an innate or inherited psycho physical disposition which anatomically regarded probably has the form of a compound system of sensorimotor arcs We may then define an instinct as an inherited or innate psycho physical disposition which determines its possessor to perceive and to pay attention to objects of a certain class to experience an emotional excitement of a particular quality upon perceiving such an object and to act in regard to it in a particular manner or at least to experience an impulse to such action It must further be noted that some instincts remain inexcitable ex cept during the prevalence of some temporary bodily state such as hun ger In these cases we must suppose that the bodily process or state determines the stimulation of senseorgans within the body and that nervous currents ascending from these to the psychophysical disposi tion maintain it in an excitable condition9 The behaviour of some of the lower animals seems to be almost completely determined throughout their lives by instincts modi ed but very little by experience they perceive feel and act in aperfectly de nite and invariable manner whenever a given instinct is excitedi ie whenever the presence of the appropriate object coincides with the ap propriate organic state of the creature The highest degree of complex ity of mental process attained by such creatures is a struggle between two opposed Instinctive tendencies simultaneously excited Such behaviour is relatively easy to understand in the light of the conception of instincts as innate psychophysical dispositions While it is doubtful whether the behaviour of any animal is wholly determined by instincts quite unmodi ed by experience it is clear that all the higher animals learn in various and often considerable degrees to adapt their instinctive actions to peculiar circumstances and in the long course of the development of each human mind immensely greater com plications of the instinctive processes are brought about complications so great that they have obscured until recent years the essential likeness of the instinctive processes in men and animals These complications of instinctive processes are of four principal kinds which we may distin guish as follows 7 l The instinctive reactions become capable of being initiated not only by the perception of objects of the kind which directly excite the innate disposition the natural or native excitants of the instinct but also by ideas of such objects and by perceptions and by ideas of objects of 34 William McDougall other kinds 2 the bodily movements in which the instinct nds expression may be modi ed and complicated to an inde nitely great degree 3 owing to the complexity of the ideas which can bring the human instincts into play it frequently happens that several instincts are simul taneously excited when the several processes blend with various de grees of intimacy 4 the instinctive tendencies become more or less systematically organised about certain objects or ideas The full consideration of the rst two modes of complication of instinctive behaviour would lead us too far into the psychology of the intellectual processes to which most of the textbooks of psychology are mainly devoted It must suffice merely to indicate in the present chapter a few points of prime importance in this connection The third and fourth complications will be dealt with at greater length in the following chap ters for they stand in much need of elucidation In order to understand these complications of instinctive behaviour we must submit the conception of an instinct to a more minute analysis It was said above that every instinctive process has the three aspects of all mental process the cognitive the affective and the conative Now the innate psychophysical disposition which is an instinct may be re garded as consisting of three corresponding parts an afferent a central and a motor or efferent part whose activities are the cognitive the af fective and the conative features respectively of the total instinctive process The afferent or receptive part of the total disposition is some organised group of nervous elements or neurones that is specially adapted to receive and to elaborate the impulses initiated in the senseorgan by the native obj ect of the instinct its constitution and activities determine the sensory content of the psychophysical process From the afferent part the excitement spreads over to the central part of the disposition the constitution of this part determines in the main the distribution of the nervous impulses especially of the impulses that descend to modify the working of the visceral organs the heart lungs bloodvessels glands and so forth in the manner required for the most effective execution of the instinctive action the nervous activities of this central part are the correlates of the affective or emotional aspect or feature of the total psychical process10 The excitement of the efferent or motor part reaches it by way of the central part its constitution determines the distribution of impulses to the muscles of the skeletal system by which the instinc An Introduction to Social Psychology3 5 tive action is effected and its nervous activities are the correlates of the conative element of the psychical process of the felt impulse to action Now the afferent or receptive part and the efferent or motor part are capable of being greatly modi ed independently of one another and of the central part in the course of the life history of the individual while the central part persists throughout life as the essential unchang ing nucleus of the disposition Hence in man whose intelligence and adaptability are so great the afferent and efferent parts of each instinc tive disposition are liable to many modi cations while the central part alone remains unmodi ed that is to say the cognitive processes through which any instinctive process may be initiated exhibit a great complica tion and variety and the actual bodily movements by which the instinc tive process achieves its end may be complicated to an inde nitely great extent while the emotional excitement with the accompanying nervous activities of the central part of the disposition is the only part of the total instinctive process that retains its speci c character and remains common to all individuals and all situations in which the instinct is excited It is for this reason that authors have commonly treated of the instinctive actions of animals on the one hand and of the emotions of men on the other hand as distinct types of mental process failing to see that each kind of emotional excitement is always an indication of and the most constant feature of some instinctive process Let us now consider very brie y the principal ways in which the instinctive disposition may be modi ed on its afferent or receptive side and let us take for the sake of clearness of exposition the case of a particular instinct namely the instinct of fear or ight which is one of the strongest and most widely distributed instincts throughout the ani mal kingdom In man and in most animals this instinct is capable of being excited by any sudden loud noise independently of all experience of danger or harm associated with such noises We must suppose then that the afferent inlet or one of the afferent inlets of this innate disposi tion consists in a system of auditory neurones connected by sensory nerves with the ear This afferent inlet to this innate disposition is but little specialised since it may be excited by any loud noise One change it may undergo through experience is specialisation on repeated experi ence of noises of certain kinds that are never accompanied or followed by hurtful effects most creatures will learn to neglect them11 their in stinct of ight is no longer excited by them they learn that is to say to discriminate between these and other noises this implies that the per 36 William McDougall ceptual disposition the afferent inlet of the instinct has become further specialised More important is the other principal mode in which the instinct may be modi ed on its afferent or cognitive side Consider the case of the birds on an uninhabited island which show no fear of men on their rst appearance on the island The absence of fear at the sight of man implies not that the birds have no instinct of fear but that the instinct has no afferent inlet specialised for the reception of the retinal impres sion made by the human form But the men employ themselves in shoot ing and very soon the sight of a man excites the instinct of fear in the birds and they take to ight at his approach How are we to interpret this change of instinctive behaviour brought about by experience Shall we say that the birds observe on one occasion or on several or many occasions that on the approach of a man one of their number falls to the ground uttering cries of pain that they infer that the man has wounded it and that he may wound and hurt them and that he is therefore to be avoided in the future No psychologist would now accept this anthropo morphic interpretation of the facts If the behaviour we are considering were that of savage men or even of a community of philosophers and logicians such an account would err in ascribing the change of behaviour to apurely intellectual process Shall we then say that the sudden loud sound of the gun excites the instinct of fear and that because the per ception of this sound is constantly accompanied by the visual percep tion of the human form the idea of the latter becomes associated with the idea of the sound so that thereafter the sight of a man reproduces the idea of the sound of the gun and hence leads to the excitement of the instinct by way of its irmately organised afferent inlet the system of auditory neurones This would be much nearer the truth than the former account some such interpretation of facts of this order has been offered by many psychologists and very generally accepted12 Its acceptance involves the attribution of free ideas of the power of representation of objects independently of sense presentation to whatever animals dis play this kind of modi cation of instinctive behaviour by experiencei that is to say to all the animals save the lowest and there are good reasons for believing that only man and the higher animals have this power We are therefore driven to look for a still simpler interpretation of the facts and such a one is not far to seek We may suppose that since the visual presentation of the human form repeatedly accompanies the excitement of the instinct of fear by the sound of the gun it acquires An Introduction to Social Psychology37 the power of exciting directly the reactions characteristic of this in stinct rather than indirectly by way of the reproduction of the idea of the sound 139 8 we may suppose that after repetition of the experience the sight of a man directly excites the instinctive process in its affective and conative aspects only or we may say in physiological terms that the visual disposition concerned in the elaboration of the retinal impres sion of the human form becomes directly connected or associated with the central and efferent parts of the instinctive disposition which thus acquires through the repetition of this experience a new afferent inlet through which it may henceforth be excited independently of its innate afferent inlet There is Ithink good reason to believe that this third interpretation is much nearer the truth than the other two considered above In the rst place the assumption of such relative independence of the afferent part of an instinctive disposition as is implied by this interpretation is justi ed by the fact that many instincts may be excited by very different objects affecting different senses prior to all experience of such objects The instinct of fear is the most notable in this respect for in many ani mals it may be excited by certain special impressions of sight of smell and of hearing as well as by all loud noises perhaps also by any pain ful senseimpression all of which impressions evoke the emotional ex pressions and the bodily movements characteristic of the instinct Hence we may infer that such an instinct has several innately organised affer ent inlets through each of which its central and efferent parts may be excited without its other afferent inlets being involved in the excitement But the best evidence in favour of the third interpretation is that which we may obtain by introspective observation of our own emo tional states Through injuries received we may learn to fear or to be angered by the presence of a person or animal or thing towards which we were at rst indifferent and we may then experience the emotional excitement and the impulse to the appropriate movements of ight or aggression without recalling the nature and occasion of the injuries we have formerly suffered i 8 although the idea of the former injury may be reproduced by the perception or by the idea of the person animal or thing from which it was received yet the reproduction of this idea is not an essential step in the process of reexcitement of the instinctive reaction in its affective and conative aspects for the visual impression made by the person or thing leads directly to the excitement of the cen tral and efferent parts of the innate disposition In this way our emo 3 8 William McDou gall tional and conative tendencies become directly associated by experience with many objects to which we are natively indifferent and not only do we not necessarily recall the experience through which the association was set up but in many such cases we cannot do so by any effort of recollection13 Such acquisition of new perceptual inlets by instinctive disposi tions in accordance with the principle of association in virtue of tempo ral contiguity seems to occur abundantly among all the higher animals and to be the principal mode in which they profit by experience and learn to adapt their behaviour to a greater variety of the objects of their environment than is provided for by their purely innate dispositions In man it occurs still more abundantly and in his case the further compli cation ensues that each sensepresentation that thus becomes capable of arousing some emotional and conative disposition may be represented or reproduced in idea and since the representation having in the main the same neural basis as the sensepresentation induces equally well the same emotional and conative excitement and since it may be brought to mind by any one of the intellectual processes ranging from simple asso ciative reproduction to the most subtle processes of judgment and infer ence the ways in which any one instinctive disposition of a developed human mind may be excited are indefinitely various There is a second principal mode in which objects other than the native objects of an instinct may lead to the excitement of its central and efferent parts This is similar to the mode of reproduction of ideas known as the reproduction by similars a thing or senseimpression more or less like the speci c excitant of an instinct but really of a different class excites the instinct in virtue of those features in which it resembles the speci c object As a very simple instance of this we may take the case of a horse shying at an old coat left lying by the roadside The shying is no doubt due to the excitement of an instinct whose function is to secure a quick retreat from any crouching beast of prey and the coat sufficiently resembles such a crouching form to excite the instinct This example illustrates the operation of this principle in the crudest fashion In the human mind it works in a much more subtle and wide reaching fashion Very delicate resemblances of form and relation be tween two objects may suf ce to render one of them capable of exciting the emotion and the impulse which are the appropriate instinctive re sponse to the presentation of the other object39 and in order that this shall occur it is not necessary that the individual shall become explic An Introduction to Social Psychology39 itly aware of the resemblance between the two objects nor even that the idea of the second object shall be brought to his consciousness though this no doubt occurs in many cases The wide scope of this principle in the human mind is due not merely to the subtler operation of resem blances but also to the fact that through the working of the principle of temporal contiguity discussed on the foregoing page the number of objects capable of directly exciting any instinct becomes very consider able and each such object then serves as a basis for the operation of the principle of resemblance that is to say each object that in virtue of temporal contiguity acquires the power of exciting the central and effer ent parts of an instinct renders possible the production of the same ef fect by a number of objects more or less resembling it The conjoint operation of the two principles may be illustrated by a simple example a child is terri ed upon one occasion by the violent behaviour of a man of a peculiar cast of countenance or of some special fashion of dress thereafter not only does the perception or idea of this man excite fear but any man resembling him in face or costume may do so without the idea of the original occasion of fear or of the terrifying individual re curring to consciousness As regards the modi cation of the bodily movements by means of which an instinctive mental process achieves14 or strives to achieve its end man excels the animals even to a greater degree than as regards the modi cation of the cognitive part of the process For the animals ac quire and use hardly any movementcomplexes that are not natively given in their instinctive dispositions and in the re ex coordinations of their spinal cords This is true of even so intelligent an animal as the domestic dog Many of the higher animals may by long training be taught to acquire a few movementcomplexesia dog to walk on its hind legs or a cat to sit up but the wonder with which we gaze at a circushorse standing on a tub or at a dog dancing on hind legs shows how strictly limited to the natively given combinations of movements all the animals normally are In the human being on the other hand a few only of the simpler instincts that ripen soon after birth are displayed in movements deter mined purely by the innate dispositions such are the instincts of suck ing of wailing of crawling of winking and shrinking before a coming blow Most of the human instincts ripen at relatively late periods in the course of individual development when considerable power of intelli gent control and imitation of movement has been acquired hence the 40 William McDougall motor tendencies of these instincts are seldom manifested in their purely native forms but are from the first modi ed controlled and suppressed in various degrees This is the case more especially with the large move ments of trunk and limbs while the subsidiary movements those which Darwin called serviceable associated movements such as those due to contractions of the facial muscles are less habitually controlled save by men of certain races and countries among whom control of facial movement is prescribed by custom An illustration may indicate the main principle involved One may have learnt to suppress more or less completely the bodily movements in which the excitement of the instinct of pugnacity naturally nds vent or by a study of pugilism one may have learnt to render these movements more nely adapted to secure the end of the instinct or one may have learnt to replace them by the ha bitual use of weapons so that the hand ies to the swordhilt or to the hippocket instead of being raised to strike whenever this instinct is excited But one exercises but little if any control over the violent beat ing of the heart the ushing of the face the deepened respiration and the general redistribution of bloodsupply and nervous tension which constitute the visceral expression of the excitement of this instinct and which are determined by the constitution of its central affective part Hence in the human adult while this instinct may be excited by objects and situations that are not provided for in the innate disposition and may express itself in bodily movements which also are not natively de termined or may fail to nd expression in any such movements owing to strong volitional control its unmodi ed central part will produce visceral changes with the accompanying emotional state of conscious ness in accordance with its unmodi ed native constitution and these visceral changes will usually be accompanied by the innately determined facial expression in however slight a degree hence result the character istic expressions or symptoms of the emotion of anger which as regards their main features are common to all men of all times and all races All the principal instincts of man are liable to similar modi cations of their afferent and motor parts while their central parts remain un changed and determine the emotional tone of consciousness and the vis ceral changes characteristic of the excitement of the instinct It must be added that the conative aspect of the psychical process always retains the unique quality of an impulse to activity even though the instinctive activity has been modi ed by habitual control and this felt impulse when it becomes conscious of its end assumes the charac An Introduction to Social Psychology41 ter of an explicit desire or aversion Are then these instinctive impulses the only motive powers of the human mind to thought and action What of pleasure and pain which by so many of the older psychologists were held to be the only motives of human activity the only objects or sources of desire and aversion In answer to the former question it must be said that in the devel oped human mind there are springs of action of another class namely acquired habits of thought and action An acquired mode of activity becomes by repetition habitual and the more frequently it is repeated the more powerful becomes the habit as a source of impulse or motive power Few habits can equal in this respect the principal instincts and habits are in a sense derived from and secondary to instincts for in the absence of instincts no thought and no action could ever be achieved or repeated and so no habits of thought or action could be formed Habits are formed only in the service of the instincts The answer to the second question is that pleasure and pain are not in themselves springs of action but at the most of undirected move ments they serve rather to modify instinctive processes pleasure tend ing to sustain and prolong any mode of action pain to cut it short under their prompting and guidance are effected those modi cations and ad aptations of the instinctive bodily movements which we have brie y considered above15 We may say then that directly or indirectly the instincts are the prime movers of all human activity by the conative or impulsive force of some instinct or of some habit derived from an instinct every train of thought however cold and passionless it may seem is borne along towards its end and every bodily activity is initiated and sustained The instinctive impulses determine the ends of all activities and supply the driving power by which all mental activities are sustained and all the complex intellectual apparatus of the most highly developed mind is but a means towards these ends is but the instrument by which these im pulses seek their satisfactions while pleasure and pain do but serve to guide them in their choice of the means Take away these instinctive dispositions with their powerful im pulses and the organism would become incapable of activity of any kind it would lie inert and motionless like a wonderful clockwork whose mainspring had been removed or a steamengine whose res had been drawn These impulses are the mental forces that maintain and shape all the life of individuals and societies and in them we are confronted with 42William McDougall the central mystery of life and mind and will The following chapters I hope will render clearer and will give some support to the views brie y and somewhat dogmatically stated in the present chapter16 C h a pte r The Principal Instincts and the Primary Emotions of M an Before we can make any solid progress in the understanding of the com plex emotions and impulses that are the forces underlying the thoughts and actions of men and of societies we must be able to distinguish and describe each of the principal human instincts and the emotional and conative tendencies characteristic of each one of them This task will be attempted in the present chapter in Chapter V we shall seek to analyse some of the principal complex emotions and impulses to display them as compounded from the limited number of primary or simple instinc tive tendencies 17 and in the succeeding chapters of this section we shall consider the way inwhich these tendencies become organised within the complex dispositions that constitute the sentiments In the foregoing chapter it was said that the instinctive mental pro cess that results from the excitement of any instinct has always an affec tive aspect the nature of which depends upon the constitution of that most stable and unchanging of the three parts of the instinctive disposi tion namely the central part In the case of the simpler instincts this affective aspect of the instinctive process is not prominent and though no doubt the quality of it is peculiar in each case yet we cannot readily distinguish these qualities and we have no special names for them But in the case of the principal powerful instincts the affective quality of each instinctive process and the sum of visceral and bodily changes in which it expresses itself are peculiar and distinct hence language pro vides special names for such modes of affective experience names such as anger fear curiosity and the generic name for them is emotion The word emotion is used of course in popular speech loosely and somewhat vaguely and psychologists are not yet completely consistent in their use of it But all psychological terms that are taken from com mon speech have to undergo a certain specialisation and more rigid de nition before they are t for scienti c use and in using the word emo An Introduction to Social Psychology43 tion in the restricted sense which is indicated above and which will be rigidly adhered to throughout these pages I am but carrying to its logi cal conclusion a tendency displayed by the majority of recent English writers on psychology Each of the principal instincts conditions then some one kind of emotional excitement whose quality is speci c or peculiar to it and the emotional excitement of specific quality that is the affective aspect of the operation of any one of the principal instincts may be called a pri mary emotion This principle which was enunciated in my little work on physiological psychology proves to be of very great value when we seek to analyse the complex emotions into their primary constituents Several writers have come very near to the recognition of this principle but few or none of them have stated it clearly and explicitly and what is more important they have not systematically applied it in any thor oughgoing manner as the guiding principle on which we must chie y rely in seeking to de ne the primary emotions and to unravel the com plexities of our concrete emotional experiences18 In adapting to scienti c use a word from popular speech it is inevi table that some violence should be done to common usage and in adopt ing this rigid de nition of emotion we shall have to do such violence in refusing to admit joy sorrow and surprise which are often regarded even by writers on psychology as the very types of emotions to our list whether of simple and primary or of complex emotions Some argu ments in justi cation of this exclusion will be adduced later At this stage I will only point out that joy and sorrow are not emotional states that can be experienced independently of the true emotions that in every case they are quali cations of the emotions they accompany and that in strictness we ought rather to speak always of a joyful or sorrowful emo tioniegt a joyful wonder or gratitude a sorrowful anger or pity In considering the claim of any human emotion or impulse to rank as a primary emotion or simple instinctive impulse we shall nd two principles of great assistance First if a similar emotion and impulse are clearly displayed in the instinctive activities of the higher animals that fact will afford a strong presumption that the emotion and impulse in question are primary and simple on the other hand if no such instinc tive activity occurs among the higher animals we must suspect the af fective state in question of being either a complex composite emotion or no true emotion Secondly we must inquire in each case whether the emotion and impulse in question occasionally appear in human beings 44 William McDougall with morbidly exaggerated intensity apart from such general hyper excitability as is displayed in mania For it would seem that each in stinctive disposition being a relatively independent functional unit in the constitution of the mind is capable of morbid hypertrophy or of becoming abnormally excitable independently of the rest of the mental dispositions and functions That is to say we must look to comparative psychology and to mental pathology for con rmation of the primary character of those of our emotions that appear to be simple and unanalysable19 T he Instinct of F light and the Emotion of Fear The instinct to ee from danger is necessary for the survival of almost all species of animals and in most of the higher animals the instinct is one of the most powerful Upon its excitement the locomotory appara tus is impelled to its utmost exertions and sometimes the intensity and long duration of these exertions is more than the visceral organs can support so that they are terminated by utter exhaustion or death Men also have been known to achieve extraordinary feats of running and leaping under this impulse there is a wellknown story of a great athlete who when pursued as a boy by a savage animal leaped over a wall which he could not again clear until he attained his full stature and strength These locomotory activities are accompanied by a characteris tic complex of symptoms which in its main features is common to man and to many of the higher animals and which in conjunction with the violent efforts to escape constitutes so unmistakable an expression of the emotion of fear that no one hesitates to interpret it as such hence popular speech recognises the connection of the emotion with the in stinct that determines the movements of ight in giving them the one name fear Terror die most intense degree of this emotion may involve so great a nervous disturbance both in men and animals as to defeat the ends of the instinct by inducing general convulsions or even death In certain cases of mental disease the patient s disorder seems to consist essentially in an abnormal excitability of this instinct and a consequent undue frequency and intensity of its operation the patient lives perpetu ally in fear shrinking in terror from the most harmless animal or at the least unusual sound and surrounds himself with safeguards against impossible dangers In most animals this instinct may be excited by a variety of objects and senseimpressions prior to all experience of hurt or danger that is An Introduction to Social Psychology45 to say the innate disposition has several afferent inlets In some of the more timid creatures it would seem that every unfamiliar sound or sight is capable of exciting it20 In civilised man whose life for so many generations has been more or less sheltered from the dangers peculiar to the natural state the instinct exhibits like all complex organs and func tions that are not kept true to the speci c type by rigid selection consid erable individual differences especially on its receptive side Hence it is dif cult to discover what objects and impressions were its natural exci tants in primitive man The wail of the very young infant has but little variety but mothers claim to be able to distinguish the cries of fear of anger and of bodily discomfort at a very early age and it is probable that these three modes of reaction become gradually differentiated from a single instinctive impulse that of the cry whose function is merely to signal to the mother the need for her ministrations In most young chil dren unmistakable fear is provoked by any sudden loud noise some being especially sensitive to harsh deeppitched noises even though of low intensity and all through life such noise remains for many of us the surest and most frequent excitant of the instinct Other children while still in arms show fear if held too loosely when carried downstairs or if the arms that hold them are suddenly lowered In some intense fear is excited on their first introduction at close quarters to a dog or cat no matter how quiet and well behaved the animal may be and some of us continue all through life to experience a little thrill of fear whenever a dog runs out and barks at our heels though we may never have received any hurt from an animal and may have perfect con dence that no hurt is likely to be done us21 In other persons again fear is excited by the noise of a high wind and though they may be in a solidly built house that has weathered a hundred storms they will walk restlessly to and fro throughout every stormy night In most animals instinctive ight is followed by equally instinctive concealment as soon as cover is reached and there can be little doubt that in primitive man the instinct had this double tendency As soon as the little child can run his fear expresses itselfin concealment following on ight and the many adult persons who seek refuge from the strange noises of dark nights or from a thunderstorm by covering their heads with the bedclothes and who nd a quite irrational comfort in so do ing illustrate the persistence of this tendency It is perhaps in the op posed characters of these two tendencies both of which are bound up 46 William McDougall with the emotion of fear that we may nd an explanation of the great variety of and variability of the symptoms of fear The sudden stop ping of heartbeat and respiration and the paralysis of movement in which it sometimes nds expression are due to the impulse to conceal ment the hurried respiration and pulse and the frantic bodily efforts by which it is more commonly expressed are due to the impulse to ight22 That the excitement of fear is not necessarily or indeed usually the effect of an intelligent appreciation or anticipation of danger is espe cially well shown by children of four or ve years of age in whom it may be induced by the facial contortions or playful roarings of a famil iar friend Under these circumstances a child may exhibit every symp tom of fear even while he sits upon his tormentor s lap and with arms about his neck beseeches him to cease or to promise not to do it again And many a child has been thrown into a paroxysm of terror by the approach of some hideous gure that he knew to be but one of his playfellows in disguise Of all the excitants of this instinct the most interesting and the most dif cult to understand as regards its mode of operation is the unfamil iar or strange as such Whatever is totally strange whatever is violently opposed to the accustomed and familiar is apt to excite fear both in men and animals if only it is capable of attracting their attention It is I think doubtful whether an eclipse of the moon has ever excited the fear of animals for the moon is not an object of their attention but for sav age men it has always been an occasion of fear The wellknown case of the dog described by Romanes that was terri ed by the movements of an object jerked forward by an invisible thread illustrates the fearex citing powers of the unfamiliar in the animal world The following inci dent is instructive in this respect A courageous child of ve years sit ting alone in a sunlit room suddenly screams in terror and on her father hastening to her can only explain that she saw something move The discovery of a mouse in the comer of the room at once explains and banishes her fear for she is on friendly terms with mice The mouse must have darted across the peripheral part of her eld of vision and this unexpected and unfamiliar appearance of movement sul ced to excite the instinct This avenue to the instinct the unfamiliar becomes in man highly diversi ed and intellectualised and it is owing to this that he feels fear before the mysterious the uncanny and the supernatural and that fear entering as an element into the complex emotions of awe and An Introduction to Social Psychology47 reverence plays its part in all religions Fear whether its impulse be to ight or to concealment is characterised by the fact that its excitement more than that of any other instinct tends to bring to an end at once all other mental activity rivet ing the attention upon its object to the exclusion of all others owing probably to this extreme concentration of attention as well as to the violence of the emotion the excitement of this instinct makes a deep and lasting impression on the mind A gust of anger a wave of pity or of tender emotion an impulse of curiosity may cooperate in supporting and reenforcing mental activities of the mostvaried kinds or may domi nate the mind for a time and then pass away leaving but little trace But fear once roused haunts the mind it comes back alike in dreams and in waking life bringing with it vivid memories of the terrifying impres sion It is thus the great inhibitor of action both present action and future action and becomes in primitive human societies the great agent of social discipline through which men are led to the habit of control of the egoistic impulses T he Instinct ofRepulsion and the Emotion ofDisgust The impulse of this instinct is like that of fear one of aversion and these two instincts together account probably for all aversions except those acquired under the in uence of pain The impulse differs from that of fear in that while the latter prompts to bodily retreat from its object the former prompts to actions that remove or reject the offending object This instinct resembles fear in that under the one name we per haps commonly confuse two very closely allied instincts whose affec tive aspects are so similar that they are not easily distinguishable though their impulses are of different tendencies The one impulse of repulsion is to reject from the mouth substances that excite the instinct in vi1tue of their odour or taste substances which inthe main are noxious and evil tasting its biological utility is obvious The other impulse of repulsion seems to be excited by the contact of slimy and slippery substances with the skin and to express itself as a shrinking of the whole body accom panied by a throwing forward of the hands The common shrinking from slimy creatures with a creepy shudder seems to be the expression of this impulse It is dif cult to assign any high biological value to it un less we connect it with the necessity of avoiding noxious reptiles but it is clearly displayed by some children before the end of their first year thus in some infants furry things excite shrinking and tears at their rst 48 William McDougall contact In others the instinct seems to ripen later and the child that has handled worms frogs and slugs with delight suddenly evinces an un conquerable aversion to contact with them These two forms of disgust illustrate in the clearest and most inter esting manner the intellectualisation of the instincts and primary emo tions through extension of the range of their objects by association re semblance and analogy The manners or speech of an otherwise pre sentable person may excite the impulse of shrinking in virtue of some subtle suggestion of sliminess Or what we know of a man s charac terithat it is noxious or as we signi cantly say is of evil odourimay render the mere thought of him an occasion of dis gust we say It makes we sick to think of him and at the same time the face exhibits in some degree however slight the expression produced by the act of rej ection of some eviltasting substance from the mouth In these cases we may see very clearly that this extension by resemblance or analogy does not take place in any roundabout fashion it is not that the thought of the noxious or slippery character necessarily reproduces the idea of some eviltasting substance or of some slimy creature Rather the apprehen sion of these peculiarities of character excites disgust directly and then when we seek to account for and to justify our disgust we cast about for some simile and say He is like a snake or He is rotten to the core The common form of emotion serves as the link between the two ideas T he Instinct 0f Curiosity and the Emotion of Wonder The instinct of curiosity is displayed by many of the higher animals although its impulse remains relatively feeble in most of them And in fact it is obvious that it could not easily attain any considerable strength in any animal species because the individuals that displayed a too strong curiosity would be peculiarly liable to meet an untimely end For its impulse is to approach and to examine more closely the object that ex cites itia fact well known to hunters in the wilds who sometimes by exciting this instinct bring the curious animal within the reach of their weapons The native excitant of the instinct would seem to be any object similar to yet perceptibly different from familiar objects habitually noticed It is therefore not easy to distinguish in general terms between the excitants of curiosity and those of fear for we have seen that one of the most general excitants of fear is whatever is strange or unfamiliar The difference seems to be mainly one of degree a smaller element of An Introduction to Social Psychology49 the strange or unusual exciting curiosity while a larger and more pro nounced degree of it excites fear Hence the two instincts with their opposed impulses of approach and retreat are apt to be excited in ani mals and very young children in rapid alternation and simultaneously in ourselves Who has not seen a horse or other animal alternately approach in curiosity and ee in fear from some such object as an old coat upon the ground And who has not experienced a fearful curiosity in penetrating some dark cave or some secret chamber of an ancient castle The behaviour of animals under the impulse of curiosity may be well observed by any one who will lie down in a field where sheep or cattle are grazing and repeat at short intervals some peculiar cry In this way one may draw every member of a large ock nearer and nearer until one finds oneself the centre of a circle of them drawn up at a respectful distance of which every pair of eyes and ears is intently xed upon the strange object of their curiosity In the animals nearest to ourselves namely the monkeys curiosity is notoriously strong and them it impels not merely to approach its object and to direct the senses attentively upon it but also to active manipulation of it That a similar impulse is strong in children no one will deny Exception may perhaps be taken to the use of wonder as the name for the primary emotion that accompanies this impulse for this word is commonly applied to a complex emotion of which this primary emotion is the chief but not the sole constituent73 But as was said above some specialisation for technical purposes of words in common use is inevitable in psychology and in this instance it is I think desir able and justifiable owing to the lack of any more appropriate word This instinct being one whose exercise is not of prime importance to the individual exhibits great individual differences as regards its in nate strength and these differences are apt to be increased during the course of life the impulse growing weaker for lack of use in those in whom it is innately weak stronger through exercise in those in whom it is innater strong In men of the latter type it may become the main source of intellectual energy and effort to its impulse we certainly owe most of the purely disinterested labours of the highest types of intellect It must be regarded as one of the principal roots of both science and religion 50 William McDougall T he Instinct ofPugnacity and the Emotion of A nger This instinct though not so nearly universal as fear being apparently lacking in the constitution of the females of some species ranks with fear as regards the great strength of its impulse and the high intensity of the emotion it generates It occupies a peculiar position in relation to the other instincts and cannot strictly be brought under the de nition of instinct proposed in the first chapter For it has no speci c object or objects the perception of which constitutes the initial stage of the in stinctive process The condition of its excitement is rather any opposi tion to the free exercise of any impulse any obstruction to the activity to which the creature is impelled by any one of the other instincts24 And its impulse is to break down any such obstruction and to de stroy whatever offers this opposition This instinct thus presupposes the others its excitement is dependent upon or secondary to the excite ment of the others and is apt to be intense in proportion to the strength of the obstructed impulse The most meanspirited cur will angrily re sent any attempt to take away its bone if it is hungry a healthy infant very early displays anger if his meal is interrupted and all through life most men nd it difficult to suppress irritation on similar occasions In the animal world the most furious excitement of this instinct is pro voked in the male of many species by any interference with the satisfac tion of the sexual impulse since such interference is the most frequent occasion of its excitement and since it commonly comes from other male members of his own species the actions innately organised for securing the ends of this instinct are such actions as are most effective in combat with his fellows Hence also the defensive apparatus of the male is usually like the lion s or the stallion s mane especially adapted for defence against the attacks of his fellows But the obstruction of every other instinctive impulse may in its turn become the occasion of anger We see how among the animals even the fear impulse the most opposed in tendency to the pugnacious may on obstruction give place to it for the hunted creature when brought to bayiie when its im pulse to ight is obstructediis apt to turn upon its pursuers and to ght furiously until an opportunity for escape presents itself Darwin has shown the signi cance of the facial expression of an ger of the contracted brow and raised upper lip and man shares with many of the animals the tendency to frighten his opponent by loud roars or bellowings As with most of the other human instincts the excitement of this one is expressed in its purest form by children Many a little boy An Introduction to Social Psychology5 1 has without any example or suggestion suddenly taken to running with open mouth to bite the person who has angered him much to the distress of his parents As the child grows up as selfcontrol becomes stronger the life of ideas richer and the means we take to overcome obstructions to our efforts more re ned and complex this instinct ceases to express itself in its crude natural manner save when most intensely excited and becomes rather a source of increased energy of action towards the end set by any other instinct the energy of its impulse adds itself to and reinforces that of other impulses and so helps us to overcome our dif culties In this lies its great value for civilised man A man devoid of the pugnacious instinct would not only be incapable of anger but would lack this great source of reserve energy which is called into play in most of us by any difficulty in our path In this respect also it is the opposite of fear which tends to inhibit all other impulses than its own The Instincts of Selfabasernent or Subjection and of Selfassertion or Selfdisplay and the Emotions of Subjection and Elation or Nega tive and Positive Selffeeling These two instincts have attracted little attention and the two corre sponding emotions have so far as I know been adequately recognised by M Ribot alone25 whom I follow in placing them among the primary emotions Ribot names the two emotions negative and positive selffeel ing respectively but since these names are awkward in English I pro pose in the interests of a consistent terminology to call them the emo tions of subjection and elation The clear recognition and understanding of these instincts more especially of the instinct of selfdisplay is of the rst importance for the psychology of character and volition as I hope to show in a later chapter At presentI am only concerned to prove that they have a place in the native constitution of the human mind The instinct of selfdisplay is manifested by many of the higher social or gregarious animals especially perhaps though not only at the time of mating Perhaps among mammals the horse displays it most clearly The muscles of all parts are strongly innervated the creature holds himself erect his neck is arched his tail lifted his motions be come super uously vigorous and extensive he lifts his hoofs high in air as he parades before the eyes of his fellows Many animals especially the birds but also some of the monkeys are provided with organs of display that are specially disposed on these occasions Such are the tail of the peacock and the beautiful breast of the pigeon The instinct is 52William McDougall essentially a social one and is only brought into play by the presence of spectators Such selfdisplay is popularly recognised as implying pride we say How proud he looks and the peacock has become the symbol of pride By psychologists pride is usually denied the animals because it is held to imply selfconsciousness and that save of the most rudi mentary kind they probably have not But this denial arises from the current confusion of the emotions and the sentiments The word pride is no doubt most properly to be used as the name of one form of the self regarding sentiment and such sentiment does imply a developed self consciousness such as no animal can be credited with Nevertheless popular opinion is I think in the right in attributing to the animals in their moments of selfdisplay the germ of the emotion that is the most essential constituent of pride It is this primary emotion which may be called positive selffeeling or elation and which might well be called pride if that word were not required to denote the sentiment of pride In the simple form in which it is expressed by the selfdisplay of animals it does not necessarily imply selfconsciousness Many children clearly exhibit this instinct of selfdisplay before they can walk or talk the impulse nds its satisfaction in the admiring gaze and plaudits of the family circle as each new acquirernent is prac tised26 a little later it is still more clearly expressed by the frequently repeated command See me do this or See how wellI can do soand so and for many a child more than halfthe delight of riding on a pony or of wearing a new coat consists in the satisfaction of this instinct and vanishes if there be no spectators A little later with the growth of self consciousness the instinct may nd expression in the boasting and swag gering of boys the vanity of girls while with almost all of us it be comes the most important constituent of the selfregarding sentiment and plays an allimportant part in the volitional control of conduct in the way to be discussed in a later chapter The situation that more particularly excites this instinct is the pres ence of spectators to whom one feels oneself for any reason or in any way superior and this is perhaps true in a modi ed sense of the ani mals the digni ed behaviour of a big dog in the presence of small ones the stately strutting of a hen among her chicks seem to be in stances in point We have then good reason to believe that the germ of this emotion is present in the animal world and if we make use of our second criterion of the primary character of an emotion it answers well to the test For in certain mental diseases especially in the early stages of An Introduction to Social Psychology53 that most terrible disorder general paralysis of the insane exaggeration of this emotion and of its impulse of display is the leading symptom The unfortunate patient is perpetually in a state of elated selffeeling and his behaviour corresponds to his emotional state he struts before the world boasts of his strength his immense wealth his good looks his luck his family when perhaps there is not the least foundation for his boastings As regards the emotion of subjection or negative selffeeling we have the same grounds for regarding it as a primary emotion that ac companies the excitement of an instinctive disposition The impulse of this instinct expresses itself in a slinking crestfallen behaviour a gen eral diminution of muscular tone slow restricted movements a hanging down of the head and sidelong glances In the dog the picture is com pleted by the sinking of the tail between the legs All these features express submissiveness and are calculated to avoid attracting attention or to mollify the spectator The nature of the instinct is sometimes very completely expressed in the behaviour of a young dog on the approach of a larger older do g he crouches or crawls with legs so bent that his belly scrapes the ground his back hollowed his tail tucked away his head sunk and turned a little on one side and so approaches the impos ing stranger with every mark of submission The recognition of this behaviour as the expression of a special instinct of selfabasement and of a corresponding primary emotion en ables us to escape from a muchdiscussed dif culty It has been asked Can animals and young children that have not attained to selfcon sciousness feel shame And the answer usually given is No shame implies selfconsciousness Yet some animals notably the dog some times behave in a way which the popular mind interprets as expressing shame The truth seems to be that while fully developed shame shame in the full sense of the word does imply selfconsciousness and a self regarding sentiment yet in the emotion that accompanies this impulse to slink submissively we may see the rudiment of shame and if we do not recognise this instinct it is impossible to account for the genesis of shame or of bashfulness In children the expression of this emotion is often mistaken for that of fear but the young child sitting on his mother s lap in perfect silence and with face averted casting sidelong glances at a stranger presents a picture very different from that of fear Applying again our pathological test we find that it is satis ed by 54 William McDougall this instinct of self abasernent In many cases of mental disorder the exaggerated in uence of this instinct seems to determine the leading symptoms The patient shrinks from the observation of his fellows thinks himself a most wretched useless sinful creature and in many cases he develops delusions of having performed various unworthy or even crimi nal actions many such patients declare they are guilty of the unpardon able sin although they attach no de nite meaning to the phraseithat is to say the patient s intellect endeavours to justify the persistent emo tional state which has no adequate cause in his relations to his fellow men T he Parental Instinct and the Tender Emotion As regards the parental instinct and tender emotion there are wide dif ferences of opinion Some of the authors who have paid most attention to the psychology of the emotions notably Mr A F Shand do not recognise ter1der emotion as primary27 others especially Mr Alex Sutherland28 and M Ribot29 recognise it as a true primary and see in its impulse the root of all altruism Mr Sutherland however like Adam Smith and many other writers has confused tender emotion with sym pathy a serious error of incomplete analysis which Ribot has avoided The maternal instinct which impels the mother to protect and cher ish her young is common to almost all the higher species of animals Among the lower animals the perpetuation of the species is generally provided for by the production of an immense number of eggs or young in some species of sh a single adult produces more than a million eggs which are left entirely unprotected and are so preyed upon by other creatures that on the average but one or two attain maturity As we pass higher up the animal scale we nd the number of eggs or young more and more reduced and the diminution of their number compen sated for by parental protection At the lowest stage this protection may consist in the provision of some merely physical shelter as in the case of those animals that carry their eggs attached in some way to their bodies But except at this lowest stage the protection afforded to the young always involves some instinctive adaptation of the parent s behaviour We may see this even among the shes some of which deposit their eggs in rude nests and watch over them driving away creatures that might prey upon them From this stage onwards protection of offspring becomes increasingly psychical in character involves more profound modi cation of the parent s behaviour and a more prolonged period of An Introduction to Social Psychology5 5 more effective guardianship The highest stage is reached by those spe cies in which each female produces at a birth but one or two young and protects them so efficiently that most of the young born reach maturity the maintenance of the species thus becomes in the main the work of the parental instinct In such species the protection and cherishing of the young is the constant and allabsorbing occupation of the mother to which she devotes all her energies and in the course of which she will at any time undergo privation pain and death The instinct becomes more powerful than any other and can override any other even fear itself for it works directly in the service of the species while the other instincts work primarily in the service of the individual life for which Nature cares little All this has been well set out by Sutherland with a wealth of illustrative detail in his work on quotThe Origin and Growth of the Moral Instinc When we follow up the evolution of this instinct to the highest ani mal level we find among the apes the most remarkable examples of its operation Thus in one species the mother is said to carry her young one clasped in one arm uninterruptedly for several months never letting go of it in all her wanderings This instinct is no less strong in many human mothers in whom of course it becomes more or less intellectualised and organised as the most essential constituent of the sentiment of pa rental love Like other species the human species is dependent upon this instinct for its continued existence and welfare It is true that reason working in the service of the egoistic impulses and sentiments often circumvents the ends of this instinct and sets up habits which are incom patible with it When that occurs on a large scale in any society that society is doomed to rapid decay But the instinct itself can never die out save with the disappearance of the human species itself it is kept strong and effective just because those families and races and nations in which it weakens become rapidly supplanted by those in which it is strong It is impossible to believe that the operation of this the most power ful of the instincts is not accompanied by a strong and de nite emotion one may see the emotion expressed unmistakably by almost any mother among the higher animals especially the birds and the mammalsiby the cat for example and by most of the domestic animals and it is impossible to doubt that this emotion has in all cases the peculiar qual ity of the tender emotion provoked in the human parent by the spectacle of her helpless offspring This primary emotion has been very generally 56 William McDougall ignored by the philosophers and psychologists that is perhaps to be explained by the fact that this instinct and its emotion are in the main decidedly weaker in men than in women and in some men perhaps altogether lacking We may even surmise that the philosophers as a class are men among whom this defect of native endowment is relatively com mon It may be asked How can we account for the fact that men are at all capable of this emotion and of this disinterested protective impulse For in its racial origin the instinct was undoubtedly primarily maternal The answer is that it is very common to see a character acquired by one sex to meet its special needs transmitted generally imperfectly and with large individual variations to the members of the other sex Familiar examples of such transmission of sexual characters are afforded by the horns and antlers of some species of sheep and deer That the parental instinct is by no means altogether lacking in men is probably due in the main to such transference of a primarily maternal instinct though it is probable that in the human species natural selection has con rmed and increased its inheritance by the male sex To this view that the parental tenderness of human beings depends upon an instinct phylogenetically continuous with the parental instinct of the higher animals it might be objected that the very widespread prevalence of infanticide among existing savages implies that primitive man lacked this instinct and its tender emotion But that would be a most mistaken objection There is no feature of savage life more nearly universal than the kindness and tenderness of savages even of savage fathers for their little children All observers are agreed upon this point I have many a time watched with interest a bloodthirsty headhunter of Borneo spending a day at home tenderly nursing his infant in his arms And it is a rule to which there are few exceptions among savage peoples that an infant is only killed during the rst hours of its life If the child is allowed to survive but a few days then its life is safe the tender emo tion has been called out in fuller strength and has begun to be organised into a sentiment of parental love that is too strong to be overcome by prudential or purely selfish considerations30 The view of the origin of parental tenderness here adopted com pares I think very favourably with other accounts of its genesis Bain taught that it is generated in the individual by the frequent repetition of the intense pleasure of contact with the young though why this contact should be so highly pleasurable he did not explain31 Others have attrib An Introduction to Social Psychology 57 uted it to the expectation by the parent of lial care in his or her old age This is one form of the absurd and constantly renewed attempt to reveal all altruism as arising essentially out of a more or less subtle regard for one s own welfare or pleasure If tender emotion and the sentiment of love really arose from a disguised sel shness of this sort how much stronger should be the love of the child for the parent than that of the parent for the child For the child is for many years utterly dependent on the parent for his every pleasure and the satisfaction of his every need whereas the mother s partiif she were not endowed with this powerful instinctiwould be one long succession of sacri ces and painful efforts on behalf of her child Parental love must always appear an insoluble riddle and paradox if we do not recognise this primary emotion deeply rooted in an ancient instinct of vital importance to the race Long ago the Roman moralists were perplexed by it They noticed that in the Sullan prosecutions while many sons denounced their fathers no father was ever known to denounce his son and they recognised that this fact was inexplicable by their theories of conduct For their doctrine was like that of Bain who said explicitly quotTender feeling is as purely selfseeking as any other pleasure and makes no inquiry as to the feelings of the be loved personality It is by nature pleasurable but does not necessarily cause us to seek the good of the object farther than is needful to gratify ourselves in the indulgence of the feeling And again in express refer ence to maternal tenderness he wrote quotThe super cial observer has to be told that the feeling in itself is as purely selfregarding as the pleasure of wine or of music Under it we are induced to seek the presence of the beloved objects and to make the requisite sacri ces to gain the end looking all the while at our own pleasure and to nothing beyond This doctrine is a gross libel on human nature which is not so far inferior to animal nature in this respect as Bain s words imply If Bain and those who agree with his doctrine were in the right everything the cynics have said of human nature would be justi ed for from this emotion and its impulse to cherish and protect spring generosity gratitude love pity true benevolence and altruistic conduct of every kind in it they have their main and absolutely essential root without which they would not be33 Like the other primary emotions the tender emotion cannot be de scribed a person who had not experienced it could no more be made to understand its quality than a totally colourblind person can be made to understand the experience of coloursensation Its impulse is primarily 5 8 William McDou gall to afford physical protection to the child especially by throwing the arms about it and that fundamental impulse persists in spite of the im mense extension of the range of application of the impulse and its incor poration in many ideal sentiments34 Like all the other instinctive impulses this one when its operation meets with obstruction or opposition gives place to or is complicated bythe1 39 or quot quot 39 r 439 t 4 against the obstruction and the impulse being essentially protective its ob struction provokes anger perhaps more readily than the obstruction of any other In almost all animals that display it even in those which in all other situations are very timid any attempt to remove the young from the protecting parent or in any way to hurt them provokes a erce and 39l r 439 r of all their 39 quot By the human mother the same prompt yielding of the one impulse to the other is displayed on the same plane of physical protection but also on the higher plane of ideal protection the least threat the smallest slight or aspersion eg the mere speaking of the baby as it instead of as he or she the mere suggestion that it is not the most beautiful object in the world will suf ce to provoke a quick resentment This intimate alliance between tender emotion and anger is of great importance for the social life of man and the right understanding of it is fundamental for a true theory of the moral sentiments for the anger evoked in this way is the germ of all moral indignation and on moral indignation justice and the greater part of public law are in the main founded Thus paradoxical as it may seem bene cence and punish ment alike have their rmest and most essential root in the parental instinct For the understanding of the relation of this instinct to moral indignation it is important to note that the object which is the primary provocative of tender emotion is not the child itself but the child s expression of pain fear or distress of any kind especially the child s cry of distress further that this instinctive response is provoked by the cry not only of one s own offspring but of any child Tender emotion and the protective impulse are no doubt evoked more readily and in tensely by one s own offspring because about them a strongly organised and complex sentiment grows up But the distress of any child will evoke this response in a very intense degree in those in whom the instinct is strong There are womeniand men also though feweriwho cannot sit still or pursue any occupation within sound of the distressed cry of a child if circumstances compel them to restrain their impulse to run to An Introduction to Social Psychology 59 its relief they yet cannot withdraw their attention from the sound but continue to listen in painful agitation In the human being just as is the case in some degree with all the instinctive responses and as we noticed especially in the case of dis gust there takes place a vast extension of the eld of application of the maternal instinct The similarity of various objects to the primary or natively given object similarities which in many cases can only be op erative for a highly developed mind enables them to evoke tender emo tion and its protective impulse directlyiie not merely by way of as sociative reproduction of the natively given object In this way the emo tion is liable to be evoked not only by the distress of a child but by the mere sight or thought of a perfectly happy child for its feebleness its delicacy its obvious incapacity to supply its own needs its liability to a thousand different ills suggest to the mind its need of protection By a further extension of the same kind the emotion may be evoked by the sight of any very young animal especially if in distress Wordsworth s poem on the pet lamb is the celebration of this emotion in its purest form and indeed it would be easy to wax enthusiastic in the cause of an instinct that is the source of the only entirely admirable satisfying and perfect human relationship as well as of every kind of purely disinter ested conduct In a similar direct fashion the distress of any adult towards whom we harbour no hostile sentiment evokes the emotion but in this case it is more apt to be complicated by sympathetic pain when it becomes the painful tender emotion we call pity whereas the child or any other helpless and delicate thing may call it out in the pure form without alloy of sympathetic pain It is amusing to observe how in those women in whom the instinct is strong it is apt to be excited owing to the subtle working of similarity by any and every object that is small and delicate of its kindia very small cup or chair or book or what not Extension takes place also through association in virtue of contigu ity the objects intimately connected with the prime object of the emo tiongsuch objects as the clothes the toys the bed of the beloved childi become capable of exciting the emotion directly But the former mode of direct extension of the eld of application is in this case the more important It is invirtue of such extension to similars that when we see or hear of the ill treatment of any weak defenceless creature especially of course if the creature be a child tender emotion and the protective impulse are aroused on its behalf but are apt to give 60 William McDougall place at once to the anger we call moral indignation against the perpe trator of the cruelty and in bad cases we are quite prepared to tear the offender limb from limb the tardy process of the law with its mild pun ishments seeming utterly inadequate to afford vicarious satisfaction to our anger35 How is this great fact of wholly disinterested anger or indignation to be accounted for if not in the way here suggested The question is an important one it supplies a touchstone for all theories of the moral emo tions and sentiments For as was said above this disinterested indigna tion is the ultimate root of justice and of public law without its support law and its machinery would be most inadequate safeguards of personal rights and liberties and in opposition to the moral indignation of a majority of members of any society laws can only be very imperfectly enforced by the strongest despotism as we see in Russia at the present time Those who deny any truly altruistic motive to man and seek to reduce apparent altruism to subtle and farsighted egoism must simply deny the obvious facts and must seek some farfetched unreal explana tions of such phenomena as the antislavery and Congoreform move ments the antivivisection crusade and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children Let us examine brie y the way in which Bain sought to account for ostensibly disinterested emotion and action As we have seen above he regarded tender emotion as wholly selfseeking and like many other authors he attributed such actions as we are con sidering to sympathy He wrote From a region of the mind quite apart from the tender emotion arises the principle of sympathy or the prompt ing to take on the pleasures and pains of other beings and act on them as if they were our own Instead of being a source of pleasure to us the primary operation of sympathy is to make us surrender pleasures and to incur pains This is a paradox of our constitution to be again more fully considered 36 Here he has clearly committed himselfto a position that needs much explanation But when we seek his fuller consideration of this paradox all we find is a passage of a few lines in his section on moral disappro bation This passage tells us that when another s conduct inspires a feeling of disapprobation as violating the maxims recognised to be bind ing It is to be supposed that the same sense of duty that operates upon one s own self and stings with remorse and fear in case of disobedience should come into play when some other person is the guilty agent The feeling that rises up towards that person is a strong feeling of displea An Introduction to Social Psychology61 sure or dislike proportioned to the strength of our regard to the violated duty There arises a moral resentment or a disposition to in ict punish ment upon the offender That is to say according to Bain the source of all disinterested moral indignation is the re ection If I had done that I should have been punished therefore he must be punished Now this attitude is not uncommon especially in the nursery and it plays some small part no doubt in securing equal distribution of punish ments but it is surely wholly inadequate to account for that paradox of our constitution previously recognised by Bain In order to realise how far from the truth this doctrine is we have only to consider what kinds of conduct r moral 39 most strnn 01v If we hear of a man robbing a bank holding up a mail train or killing another in fair ght we may agree that he should be punished for we recognise intel lectually that the interests of society demand that such things shall not be done too frequently and we ourselves might shrink from similar con duct but our feeling towards the criminal may be one of pity or perhaps merely one of amusement dashed with admiration for his audacity and skill But let the act be one in icting pain on a helpless creatureian act of cruelty to a horse a dog or above all to a childiand our moral indignation blazes out even though the act be one for which the law prescribes no punishment Bain s explanation of his paradox of sym pathy is then utterly inadequate and a closer examination of his state ment of the principle of sympathy shows that it is false and that any plausibility it may seem to possess depends upon the vague and rhetori cal language in which it is made His statement is that sympathy is the prompting to take on the pains and pleasures of another being and to endeavour to abolish that other s pain and to prolong his pleasure But if we use more accurate language we shall have to say that the sympa thetic pain or pleasure we experience is immediately evoked in us by the spectacle of pain or of pleasure and that we then act on it because it is our own pain or pleasure and the action we take so long as no other principle is at work is directed to cut short our own pain and to prolong our own pleasure quite regardless of the feelings of the other person Now the easiest and quickest way of cutting short sympathetically in duced pain is to turn our eyes and our thoughts away from the suffering creature and this is the way invariably followed by all sensitive natures in which the tender emotion and its protective impulse are weak They pass by the sick and suffering with averted gaze and resolutely banish all thoughts of them surrounding themselves as far as possible with gay I39 I 62William McDougall and cheerful faces No doubt the spectacle of the poor man who fell among thieves was just as distressing to the priest and the Levite who passed by on the other side as to the good Samaritan who tenderly cared for him They may well have been exquisitely sensitive souls who would have fainted away if they had been compelled to gaze upon his wounds The great difference between them and the Samaritan was that in him the tender emotion and its impulse were evoked and that this impulse overcame or prevented the aversion naturally induced by the painful and perhaps disgusting spectacle38 Our susceptibility to sympathetically induced pain or pleasure op erating alone simply inclines us then to avoid the neighbourhood of the distressed and to seek the company of the cheerful but tender emo tion draws us near to the suffering and the sad seeking to alleviate their distress It is to be noted also that the intensity of the emotion and the strength of its impulse to cherish and protect and also the violence of the anger we feel against him who inflicts pain on any weak and defenceless creatureiall these bear no constant relation to the intensity of our sympathetically induced pain There are natures so strong and so happily constituted that they hardly know pain yet they may be very tender hearted and easily roused to anger by the spectacle of cruelty Again the mere threat of injury to a feeble creature may provoke an instantaneous anger and it would be absurd to suppose that in such a case one first pictures the suffering of the creature that would result if the threat were executed then sympathetically experiences the pain and then putting oneselfin the place of the prospectively injured goes on to feel anger against him who threatens The response is as direct and instantaneous as the mother s emotion at the cry of her child or her impulse to y to its defence and it is essentially the same process In no other way than that here proposed is it possible to account for disinterested bene cence and moral indignation Ifthis view is rejected they remain a paradox and a miracleitendencies mysteriously implanted in the human breast that have no history in the evolutionary process no analogy and no intelligible connection with no resemblance to any of the other features of our mental constitution The importance of establishing the place of tender emotion among the primary emotions necessitates in this place a brief criticism of Mr Shand s treatment of it although this criticism may be more easily un derstood after reading Chapters V and VI in which the organisation of the sentiments is discussed An Introduction to Social Psychology63 According to Mr Shand39 tender emotion is always complex and into its composition there enter always both oy and sorrow He arrives at this View in the following way Accepting the traditional View that joy and sorrow are primary emotions he says that joy is a diifusive emotion that has no speci c tendency for he has not accepted the guiding prin ciple followed in these pages namely that each primary emotion ac companies the excitement of an instinctive disposition of speci c ten dency and sorrow he says has two impulses namely to cling to its object and to restore it to repair the injury done to it that is the cause of the sorrow He then takes pity as the simplest type of tender emotion and finds that it has the fundamental impulses of sorrow to restore and to cling to its object but pity is not pure sorrow because it has an element of sweetness which element he identifies with joy Hence pity the simplest variety of tender emotion is he says a fusion of joy and sorrow Mr Shand does not attempt to account for sorrow or to trace its history in the race or to show how it gets its disinterested impulse to restore and do good to its object And this is the all important question for this impulse of tender emotion is as has been said the source of all altruistic conduct He simply begs the question in assuming sorrow to be a primary emotion having this impulse Further in the course of his discussion Shand recognises the existence of a kind of sorrow or grief that has no impulse to restore its objecti the hard bitter variety of grief and in doing that he implicitly admits that sorrow is complex and derived from simpler elements He makes also this signi cant admis sion quotThe tenderness of pity seems to come from the ideas and impulses that go out to relieve suffering Now that is just the point I wish to insist uponithat there is in pity as one element this impulse to cherish and protect with its accompanying tender emotion and that this is present also in sorrow proper but that it is not in itself painfulias sorrow isi and therefore is not sorrow but is one of the primary elements of which sorrowful emotion is compounded According to the view here adopted the element of pain in pity is sympathetically induced pain40 and the element of sweetness is the plea sure that attends the satisfaction of the impulse of the tender emotion That this view is truer than the other is I think shown by the fact that pity may be wholly devoid of this element of sweetness without losing its essential characteri namely in the case of pity evoked by some terrible suffering that we are powerless to relieve in this case the pain 64 William McDougall of the obstructed tender impulse is added to the sympathetic pain and our pity is wholly painful Another good reason for refusing to regard sorrow as one of the primary emotions is the fact that sorrowful emotion of every kind pre supposes the existence of an organised sentiment and is in fact the tender emotion developed within the sentiment of love and rendered pain ful either by sympathetically induced painias in the case of injury to the beloved object or by the baf ing of its impulseias in the case of the loss of that object If as seems to me indisputable sorrow presup poses the organised sentiment of love it clearly cannot be regarded as a primary emotion Some other Instincts ofless welldefined Emotional Tendency The seven instincts we have now reviewed are those whose excitement yields the most de nite of the primary emotions from these seven pri mary emotions together with feelings of pleasure and pain and perhaps also feelings of excitement and of depression are compounded all or almost all the affective states that are popularly recognised as emo tions and for which common speech has de nite names But there are other human instincts which though some of them play but a minor part in the genesis of the emotions have impulses that are of great impor tance for social life they must therefore be mentioned Of these by far the most important is the sexual instinct or instinct of reproduction It is unnecessary to say anything of the great strength of its impulse or of the violence of the emotional excitement that accom panies its exercise One point of interest is its intimate connection with the parental instinct There can I think be little doubt that this connec tion is an innate one and that in all save debased natures it secures that the object of the sexual impulse shall become also the object in some degree of tender emotion41 The biological utility of an innate connection of this kind is obvious It would prepare the way for that co operation between the male and female in which even among the ani mals a lifelong delity and mutual tenderness is often touchingly dis played This instinct more than any other is apt in mankind to lend the immense energy of its impulse to the sentiments and complex impulses into which it enters while its specific character remains submerged and unconscious It is unnecessary to dwell on this feature since it has been dealt with exhaustively in many thousands of novels42 From the point An Introduction to Social Psychology65 of View of this section the chief importance of this instinct is that it illustrates in a manner that must convince the most obtuse the continu ity and the essential similarity of nature and function between the hu man and the animal instincts In connection with the instinct of reproduction a few words must be said about sexual jealousy and female coyness These are regarded by some authors as special instincts butperhaps without sufficiently good grounds Jealousy in the full sense of the word is a complex emotion that presupposes an organised sentiment and there is no reason to re gard the hostile behaviour of the male animal in the presence of rivals as necessarily implying any such complex emotion or sentiment The as sumption of a specially intimate innate connection between the instincts of reproduction and of pugnacity will account for the fact that the anger of the male both in the human and inmost animal species is so readily aroused in an intense degree by any threat of opposition to the operation of the sexual impulse and perhaps the great strength of the sexual im pulse sufficiently accounts for it The coyness of the female in the presence of the male may be ac counted for in similar fashion by the assumption that in the female the instinct of reproduction has specially intimate innate relations to the instincts of selfdisplay and selfabasement so that the presence of the male excites these as well as the former instinct The desire for food that we experience when hungry with the im pulse to seize it to carry it to the mouth to chew it and swallow it must I think be regarded as rooted in a true instinct In many of the animals the movements of feeding exhibit all the marks of truly instinctive behaviour But in ourselves the instinct becomes at an early age so greatly modi ed through 1 39 onboth its rquot 4 its quot 39J that little save the strong impulse remains to mark the instinctive na ture of the process of feeding The gregarious instinct is one of the human instincts of greatest social importance for it has played a great part in moulding societary forms The affective aspect of the operation of this instinct is not suffi ciently intense or speci c to have been given a name The instinct is displayed by many species of animals even by some very low in the scale of mental capacity Its operation in its simplest form implies none of the higher qualities of mind neither sympathy nor capacity for mu tual aid Mr Francis Galton has given the classical description of the operation of the crude instinct Describing the South African ox in 66 William McDougall Damaraland43 he says he displays no affection for his fellows and hardly seems to notice their existence so long as he is among them but if he becomes separated from the herd he displays an extreme distress that will not let him rest until he succeeds in rejoining it when he has tens to bury himselfin the midst of it seeking the closest possible con tact with the bodies of his fellows There we see the working of the gregarious instinct in all its simplicity a mere uneasiness in isolation and satisfaction in being one of a herd Its utility to animals liable to the attacks of beasts of prey is obvious The instinct is commonly strongly confirmed byhabit the individual is born into a society of some sort and grows up in it and the being with others and doing as they do becomes a habit deeply rooted in the instinct It would seem to be a general rule the explanation of which is to be found in the principle of sympathetic emotion to be considered later that the more numerous the herd or crowd or society in which the indi vidual finds himself the more complete is the satisfaction of this im pulse It is probably owing to this peculiarity of the instinct that gregari ous animals of so many species are found at times in aggregations far larger than are necessary for mutual protection or for the securing of any other advantage Travellers on the prairies of North America in the early days of exploration have told how the bison might sometimes be seen in an immense herd that blackened the surface of the plain for many miles in all directions In a similar way some kinds of deer and of birds gather together and move from place to place in vast aggregations Although opinions differ widely as to the form of primitive human society some inclining to the view that it was a large promiscuous horde others with more probability regarding it as a comparatively small group of near blood relatives almost all anthropologists agree that primi tive man was to some extent gregarious in his habits and the strength of the instinct as it still exists in civilised men lends support to this view The gregarious instinct is no exception to the rule that the human instincts are liable to a morbid hypertrophy under which their emotions and impulses are revealed with exaggerated intensity The condition known to alienists as agoraphobia seems to result from the morbidly intense working of this instinctithe patient will not remain alone will not cross a wide empty space and seeks alwavs to be surrounded by other human beings But of the normal man also it is true that as Pro fessor James says To be alone is one of the greatest of evils for him Solitary con nement is by many regarded as a mode of torture too cruel An Introduction to Social Psychology67 and unnatural for civilised countries to adopt To one long pent up on a desert island the sight of a human footprint or a human form in the distance would be the most tumultuously exciting of experiences In civilised communities we may see evidence of the operation of this instinct on every hand For all but a few exceptional and generally highly cultivated persons the one essential condition of recreation is the being one of a crowd The normal daily recreation of the population of our towns is to go out in the evening and to walk up and down the streets in which the throng is densestithe Strand Oxford Street or the Old Kent Road and the smallest occasionia foreign prince driving to a railwaystation or a Lord lVIayor s Showi will line the streets for hours with many thousands whose interest in the prince or the show alone would hardly lead them to take a dozen steps out of their way On their few short holidays the working classes rush together from town and country alike to those resorts in which they are assured of the presence of a large mass of their fellows It is the same instinct working on a slightly higher plane that brings tens of thousands to the cricket and football grounds on halfholidays Crowds of this sort exert a greater fascination and afford a more complete satisfaction to the gregarious instinct than the mere aimless aggregations of the streets because all their members are simultaneously concerned with the same objects all are moved by the same emotions all shout and applaud together It would be absurd to suppose that it is merely the individuals interest in the game that brings these huge crowds together What proportion of the ten thousand witnesses of a football match would stand for an hour or more in the wind and rain if each man were isolated from the rest of the crowd and saw only the players Even cultured minds are not immune to the fascination of the herd Who has not felt it as he has stood at the Mansion House crossing or walked down Cheapside How few prefer at nightfall the lonely Thames Embankment full of mysterious poetry as the barges sweep slowly on ward with the oodtide to the garish crowded Strand a hundred yards away We cultivated persons usually say to ourselves when we yield to this fascination that we are taking an intelligent interest in the life of the people But such intellectual interest plays but a small part and beneath works the powerful impulse of this ancient instinct The possession of this instinct even in great strength does not necessarily imply sociabil ity of temperament Many a man leads in London a most solitary unso ciable life who yet would find it hard to live far away from the thronged 68 William McDougall city Such men are like Mr Galton s oxen unsociable but gregarious and they illustrate the fact that sociability although it has the gregari ous instinct at its foundation is a more complex more highly devel oped tendency As an element of this more complex tendency to socia bility the instinct largely determines the forms of the recreations of even the cultured classes and is the root of no small part of the pleasure we find in attendance at the theatre at concerts lectures and all such enter tainments How much more satisfying is a good play if one sits in a well lled theatre than if halfthe seats are empty especially if the house is unanimous and loud in the expression of its feelings But this instinct has in all ages produced more important social effects that must be considered in a later chapter Two other instincts of considerable social importance demand a brief mention The impulse to collect and hoard various objects is displayed in one way or another by almost all human beings and seems to be due to a true instinct it is manifested by many animals in the blind unintel ligent manner that is characteristic of crude instinct And like other instinctive impulses of man it is liable to become morbidly exagger ated when it appears in a mild form as the collecting mania and in greater excess as miserliness and kleptomania Like other instincts it ripens naturally and comes into play independently of all training Sta tistical inquiry among large numbers of children has shown that very few attain adult life without having made a collection of objects of one kind or another usually without any de nite purpose such collecting is no doubt primarily due to the ripening of an instinct of acquisition We seem to be justi ed in assuming in man an instinct ofconstruc ti0n The playful activities of children seem to be in part determined by its impulse and in most civilised adults it still survives though but little scope is allowed it by the circumstances of the majority For most of us the satisfaction of having actually made something is very real quite apart from the value or usefulness of the thing made And the simple desire to make something rooted in this instinct is probably a contrib uting motive to all human constructions from a mudpie to a metaphysi cal system or a code of laws The instincts enumerated above together with a number of minor instincts such as those that prompt to crawling and walking are I think all that we can recognise with certainty in the constitution of the human mind Lightly to postulate an inde nite number and variety of human instincts is a cheap and easy way to solve psychological problems and An Introduction to Social Psychology69 is an error hardly less serious and less common than the opposite error of ignoring all the instincts How often do we not hear of the religious instinct Renan asserted that the religious instinct is as natural to man as the nestbuilding instinct is to birds and many authors have written of it as one of the fundamental attributes of the human mind45 But if we accept the doctrine of the evolution of man from animal forms we are compelled to seek the origin of religious emotions and impulses in in stincts that are not 1 T quot religious And of the con ditions manifestations and tendencies of religious emotions must lead to the same search For it is clear that religious emotion is not a simple and speci c variety such as could be conditioned by any one instinct it is rather a very complex and diversi ed product of the cooperation of several instincts which bring forth very heterogeneous manifestations differing from one another as widely as light from darkness according to the degree and kind of guidance afforded by imagination and reason Much has been written in recent years of instincts of imitation of sympathy and of play and the postulation of these instincts seems to have been allowed to pass without challenge Yet as I shall show in the following section there is no sufficient justi cation for it39 for all the behaviour attributed to these three supposed instincts may be otherwise accounted for Professor James admits an instinct of emulation or rivalry but the propriety of this admission is to my mind questionable It is possible that all the behaviour which is attributed to this instinct may be ac counted for as proceeding from the instincts of pugnacity and of self display or self assertion It would I think be difficult to make out any good case for the existence of such an instinct in the animal world But a suggestion as to the peculiar position and origin of a human instinct of emulation will be made in the next chapter 1 A C h apter IV Some General or NonSpecific Innate Tendencies In this chapter we have to consider certain innate tendencies of the hu man mind of great importance for social life which are sometimes as cribed to special instincts but which are more properly classed apart from the instinctive tendencies For we have seen that an instinct no matter how profoundly modi ed it may be in the developed human mind as regards the conditions of its excitement and the actions in which it manifests itself always retains unchanged its essential and permanent 70 William McDougall nucleus this nucleus is the central part of the innate disposition the excitement of which determines an affective state or emotion of speci c quality and a native impulse towards some speci c end And the tenden cies to be considered in this chapter have no such specific characters but are rather of a manysided and general nature Consider for ex ample the tendency to imitateithe modes of action in which this ten dency expresses itself and the accompanying subjective states are as various as the things or actions that can be imitated Sympathy or the Sympathetic Induction ofthe Emotions The three most important of these pseudoinstincts as they might be called are suggestion imitation and sympathy They are closely allied as regards their effects for in each case the process in which the ten dency manifests itself involves an interaction between at least two indi viduals one of whom is the agent while the other is the person acted upon or patient and in each case the result of the process is some degree of assimilation of the actions and mental state of the patient to those of the agent They are three forms of mental interaction of fundamental importance for all social life both of men and animals These processes of mental interaction of impression and reception may involve chie y the cognitive aspect of mental process or its affective or its conative aspect In the rst case when some presentation idea or belief of the agent directly induces a similar presentation idea or belief in the pa tient the process is called one of suggestion when an affective or emo tional excitement of the agent induces a similar affective excitement in the patient the process is one of sympathy or sympathetic induction of emotion or feeling when the most prominent result of the process of interaction is the assimilation of the bodily movements of the patient to those of the agent we speak of imitation Now M Tarde46 and Professor Baldwin47 have singled out imita tion as the allimportant social process and Baldwin like most contem porary writers attributes it to an instinct of imitation But careful con sideration of the nature of imitative actions shows that they are of many kinds that they issue from mental processes of a number of different types and that none are attributable to a speci c instinct of imitation while many are due to sympathy and others to suggestion We must therefore first consider sympathy and suggestion and after de ning them as precisely as possible go on to consider the varieties of imitative action An Introduction to Social Psychology71 Sympathy is by some authors ascribed to a special instinct of sym pathy and even Professor James has been misled by the confused usage of common speech and has said sympathy is an emotion But the principles maintained in the foregoing chapter will not allow us to ac cept either of these views The word sympathy as popularly used generally implies a tender regard for the person with whom we are said to sympathise But such sympathy is only one special and complex form of sympathetic emotion in the strict and more general sense of the words The fundamental and primitive form of sympathy is exactly what the word implies a suffering with the experiencing of any feeling or emo tion when and because we observe in other persons or creatures the expression of that feeling or emotion49 Sympathetic induction of emotion is displayed in the simplest and most unmistakable fashion by many probably by all of the gregarious animals and it is easy to understand how greatly it aids them in their struggle for existence One of the clearest and commonest examples is the spread of fear and its ightimpulse among the members of a ock or herd Many gregarious animals utter when startled a characteristic cry of fear when this cry is emitted by one member of a ock or herd it immediately excites the ightimpulse in all of its fellows who are within hearing of it39 the whole herd ock or covey takes to ight like one individual Or again one of a pack of gregarious hunting animals dogs or wolves comes upon a fresh trail sights the prey and pursues it uttering a characteristic yelp that excites the instinct of pursuit in all his fellows and brings them yelpingbehind him Or two dogs begin to growl or ght and at once all the dogs within sound and sight stiffen them selves and show every symptom of anger Or one beast in a herd stands arrested gazing in curiosity on some unfamiliar object and presently his fellows also to whom the object may be invisible display curiosity and come up to join in the examination of the object In all these cases we observe only that the behaviour of one animal upon the excitement of an instinct immediately evokes similar behaviour in those of his fel lows who perceive his expressions of excitement But we can hardly doubt that in each case the instinctive behaviour is accompanied by the appropriate emotion and felt impulse Sympathy of this crude kind is the cement that binds animal societ ies together renders the actions of all members of a group harmonious and allows them to reap some of the prime advantages of social life in spite of lack of intelligence 72William McDougall How comes it that the instinctive behaviour of one animal directly excites similar behaviour on the part of his fellows No satisfactory answer to this question seems to have been hitherto proposed although this kind of behaviour has been described and discussed often enough Not many years ago it would have seemed sufficient to answer It is due to instinct But that answer will hardly satisfy us today I think the facts compel us to assume that in the gregarious animals each of the principal instincts has a special perceptual inlet or recipient afferent part that is adapted to receive and to elaborate the senseimpressions made by the expressions of the same instinct in other animals of the same speciesi that eg the fearinstinct has besides others a special perceptual inlet that renders it excitable by the sound of the cry of fear the instinct of pugnacity aperceptual inlet that renders it excitable by the sound of the roar of anger Human sympathy has its roots in similar specialisations of the in stinctive dispositions on their afferent sides In early childhood sympa thetic emotion is almost wholly of this simple kind and all through life most of us continue to respond in this direct fashion to the expressions of the feelings and emotions of our fellowmen This sympathetic induc tion of emotion and feeling may be observed in children at an age at which they cannotbe credited with understanding of the signi cance of the expressions that provoke their reactions Perhaps the expression to which they respond earliest is the sound of the wailing of other children A little later the sight of a smiling face the expression of pleasure provokes a smile Later still fear curiosity and I think anger are com municated readily in this direct fashion from one child to another Laugh ter is notoriously infectious all through life and this though not a truly instinctive expression affords the most familiar example of sympathetic induction of an affective state This immediate and unrestrained respon siveness to the emotional expressions of others is one of the great charms of childhood One may see it particularly well displayed by the children of some savage races especially perhaps of the negro race whom it renders wonderfully attractive Adults vary much in the degree to which they display these sympa thetic reactions but in few or none are they wholly lacking A merry face makes us feel brighter a melancholy face may cast a gloom over a cheerful company when we witness the painful emotion of others we experience sympathetic pain when we see others terrorstricken or hear their scream of terror we suffer a pang of fear though we know nothing An Introduction to Social Psychology73 of the cause of their emotion or are indifferent to it anger provokes anger the curious gaze of the passerby stirs our curiosity and a dis play of tender emotion touches as we say a tender chord in our hearts50 In short each of the great primary emotions that has its characteristic and unmistakable bodily expression seems to be capable of being ex cited by way of this immediate sympathetic response If then the View here urged is true we must not say as many authors have done that sympathy is due to an instinct but rather that sympathy is founded upon a special adaptation of the receptive side of each of the principal instinc tive dispositions an adaptation that renders each instinct capable of being excited on the perception of the bodily expressions of the excite ment of the same instinct in other persons It has been pointed out on a previous page that this primitive sym pathy implies none of the higher moral qualities There are persons who are exquisitively sympathetic in this sense of feeling with another expe riencing distress at the sight of pain and grief pleasure at the sight of joy who yet are utterly sel sh and are not moved in the least degree to relieve the distress they observe in others or to promote the pleasure that is re ected in themselves Their sympathetic sensibility merely leads them to avoid all contact with distressful persons books or scenes and to seek the company of the careless and the gay And a too great sensi bility of this kind is even adverse to the higher kind of conduct that seeks to relieve pain and to promote happiness for the sufferer s expressions of pain may induce so lively a distress in the onlooker as to incapacitate him for giving help Thus in any case of personal accident or where surgical procedure is necessary many a woman is rendered quite use less by her sympathetic distress51 Suggestion and Suggestibility Suggestion is a word that has been taken over from popular speech and been specialised for psychological use But even among psycholo gists it has been used in two rather different senses A generation ago it was used in a sense very similar to that which it has in common speech one idea was said to suggest another But this purpose is adequately served by the word reproduction and there is a growing tendency to use suggestion only in a still more technical and strict manner and it is in this stricter sense that it is used in these pages Psychologists have only in recent years begun to realise the vast scope and importance of suggestion and suggestibility in social life Their attention was directed 74 William McDougall to the study of suggestion by the recognition that the phenomena of hypnotism so long disputed and derided are genuine expressions of a peculiar abnormal condition of the mind and that the leading symptom of this condition of hypnosis is the patient s extreme liability to accept with conviction any proposition submitted to him This peculiar condi tion was called one of suggestibility and the process of communication between agent and patient which leads to the latter s acceptance of any proposition was called suggestion There was for some time a tendency to regard suggestibility as necessarily an abnormal condition and sug gestion as a psychological curiosity But very quickly it was seen that there are many degrees of suggestibility ranging from the slight degree of the normal educated adult to the extreme degree of the deeply hypno tised subject and that suggestion is a process constantly at work among us the understanding of which is of extreme importance for the social sciences It is difficult to find a definition of suggestion which will include all varieties and will yet mark it off clearly from other processes of com munication and there is no sharp line to be drawn for in many pro cesses by which conviction is produced there is a more or less strong element of suggestion cooperating with logical processes The follow ing definition will I think cover all varieties Suggestion is a process of communication resulting in the acceptance with conviction of the corn rnunicated proposition in the absence of logically adequate grounds for its acceptance The measure of the suggestibility of any subject is then the readiness with which he thus accepts propositions Of course the proposition is not necessarily communicated in formal language it may be implied by a mere gesture or interjection The suggestibility of any subject is not of the same degree at all times it varies not only according to the topic and according to the source from which the propo sition is communicated but also with the condition of the subj ect s brain from hour to hour The least degree of suggestibility is that of a wide awake selfreliant man of settled convictions possessing a large store of systematically organised knowledge which he habitually brings to bear in criticism of all statements made to him Greater degrees of sug gestibility are due in the main to conditions of four kindsi l abnormal states of the brain of which the relative dissociation obtaining in hyste ria hypnosis normal sleep and fatigue is the most important 2 de ciency of knowledge or convictions relating to the topic in regard to which the suggestion is made and imperfect organisation of knowledge An Introduction to Social Psychology75 3 the impressive character of the source from which the suggested proposition is communicated 4 peculiarities of the character and na tive disposition of the subject Of these the first need not engage our attention as it has but little part in normal social life The operation of the other three conditions may be illustrated by an example Suppose a man of wide scienti c culture to be confronted with the proposition that the bodies of the dead will one day rise from their graves to live a new life He does not accept it because he knows that dead bodies buried in graves undergo a rapid and complete decomposition and because the acceptance of the propo sition would involve a shattering of the whole of his strongly and sys tematically organised knowledge of natural processes But the same proposition may be readily accepted by a child or a savage for lack of any system of critical belief and knowledge that would con ict with it Such persons may accept almost any extravagant proposition with primi tive credulity But for the great majority of civilised adults of little scienti c culture the acceptance or rejection of the proposition will de pend upon the third and fourth of the conditions enumerated above Even a young child or a savage may reject such a proposition with scorn if it is made to him by one of his fellows but if the statement is sol emnly af rmed by a recognised and honoured teacher supported by all the prestige and authority of an ancient and powerful Church not only children and savages but most civilised adults will accept it in spite of a certain opposition offered by other beliefs and knowledge that they possess Suggestion mainly dependent for its success on this condition may be called prestige suggestion But not all persons of equal knowledge and culture are equally open to prestige suggestion Here the fourth factor comes into play namely character and native disposition As regards the latter the most impor tant condition determining individual suggestibility seems to be the rela tive strengths of the two instincts that were discussed in Chapter 111 under the names instincts of selfassertion and subjection Personal contact with any of our fellows seems regularly to bring one or other or both of these two instincts into play The presence of persons whom we regard as our inferiors in the particular situation of the moment evokes the impulse of self assertion towards such persons we are but little or not at all suggestible But in the presence of persons who make upon us an impression of power or of superiority of any kind whether merely of size or physical strength or of social standing or of intellectual reputa 76 William McDougall tion or perhaps even of tailoring the impulse of submission is brought into play and we are thrown into a submissive receptive attitude to wards them or if the two impulses are simultaneously evoked there takes place a painful struggle between them and we suffer the complex emotional disturbance known as bashful feeling In so far as the impulse of submission predominates we are suggestible towards the person whose presence evokes it Persons in whom this instinct is relatively strong will other things being the same be much subject to prestige sugges tion while on the other hand persons in whom this impulse is weak and the opposed instinct of selfassertion is strong will be apt to be self con dent cocksure persons and to be but little subject to prestige suggestion In the course of characterformation by social intercourse excessive strength of either of these impulses may be recti ed or com pensated to some extent the able but innately submissive man may gain a reasonable con dence the man of selfassertive disposition may if not stupid learn to recognise his own weaknesses and in so far as L quot p t 4 liability to r quot quot will be diminished or increased Children are then inevitably suggestible rstly because of their lack of knowledge and lack of systematic organisation of such knowl edge as they have secondly because the superior size strength knowl edge and reputation of their elders tend to evoke the impulse of submis sion and to throw them into the receptive attitude And it is in virtue largely of their suggestibility that they so rapidly absorb the knowledge beliefs and especially the sentiments of their social environment But most adults also remain suggestible especially towards masssugges tion and towards the propositions which they know to be supported by the whole weight of society or by a long tradition To the consideration of the social importance of suggestion we must return in a later chapter This brief discussion may be concluded by the repudiation of a cer tain peculiar implication attached to the word suggestion by some writers They speak of suggestive ideas and of ideas working sugges tively in the mind implying that such ideas and such working have some peculiar potency a potency that would seem to be almost of a magical character but they do not succeed in making clear in what way these ideas and their operations differ from others The potency of the idea conveyed by suggestion seems to be nothing but the potency of convic tion and convictions produced by logical methods seem to have no less power to determine thought and action or even to in uence the vital An Introduction to Social Psychology77 processes than those produced by suggestion the principal difference is that by suggestion conviction may be produced in regard to proposi tions that are insusceptible of logical demonstration or even are op posed to the evidence of perception and inference A few words must be said about contrasuggestion By this word it is usual to denote the mode of action of one individual on another which results in the second accepting in the absence of adequate logical grounds the contrary of the proposition asserted or implied by the agent There are persons with whom this result is very liable to be produced by any attempt to exert suggestive in uence or even by the most ordinary and casual utterance One remarks to such a person that it is a fine day and though up to that moment he may have formulated no opinion about the weather and have been quite indifferent to it he at once replies Well I don t agree with you I think it is perfectly horrid weather Or one says to him I think you ought to take a holiday and though he had himselfcontemplated this course he replies No I don t need one and becomes more immovably xed in this opinion and the correspond ing course of action the more he is urged to adopt their opposites Some children display this contrasuggestibility very strongly for a period and afterwards return to a normal degree of suggestibility But in some per sons it becomes habitual or chronic they take a pride in doing and say ing nothing like other people in dressing and eating differently in defy ing all the minor social conventions Commonly I believe such persons regard themselves as displaying great strength of character and cherish their peculiarity In such cases the permanence of the attitude may have very complex mental causes but in its simpler instances and probably at its inception in all instances centrasuggestion seems to be deter mined by the undue dominance of the impulse of self assertion over that of submission owing to the formation of some rudimentary senti ment of dislike for personal in uence resulting from an unwise exercise of itia sentiment which may have for its object the in uence of some one person or personal in uence in general Imitation This word has been used by M Tarde in his wellknown sociological treatises to cover processes of sympathy and suggestion as well as the processes to which the name is more usually applied and since the verb to suggest can be applied only to the part of the agent in the process of suggestion and since we need some verb to describe the part of the 78 William McDougall patient it is perhaps legitimate to extend the meaning of the word imi tate in this way so as to make it cover the process of accepting a suggestion But in the more strict sense of the word imitation it is applicable only to the imitation or copying by one individual of the actions the bodily movements of another Imitation and imitativeness in this nar rower sense of the words are usually ascribed to an instinct Thus James writes This sort of imitativeness is possessed by man in common with other gregarious animals and is an instinct in the fullest sense of the term 52 Baldwin also uses the phrase instinct of imitation and its equivalents53 but applies the word imitation to so great a variety of processes that it can hardly be supposed he means to attribute all of them to the operation of this assumed instinct The reasons for refusing to recognise an instinct of imitation may be stated as follows 7Imitative actions are extremely varied for every kind of action may be imitated there is therefore nothing speci c in the nature of the imitative movements and in the nature of the senseimpres sions by which the movements are excited or guided And this variety of movement and of senseimpression is not due to complication of a con genital disposition such as takes place in the case of all the true in stincts for this variety characterises imitative movements from the out set More important is the fact that underlying the varieties of imitative action there is no common f quot 39 1 ing satisfaction in some particular change of state And we have seen reason to regard such a speci c impulse prompting to continued action until its satisfaction is secured as the most essential feature of every truly instinctive process Further if we consider the principal varieties of imitative action we nd that all are explicable without the assump tion of a special instinct of imitation Imitative actions of at least three perhaps of ve distinct classes may be distinguished according to the kind of mental process of which they are the outcome 1 The expressive actions that are sympathetically excited in the way discussed under the head of sympathy form one class of imitative actions Thus when a child responds to a smile with a smile when he cries on hearing another child cry or when he runs to hide himself on seeing other children running frightened to shelter he may be said to be imitating the actions of others If we were right in our conclusions re garding the responses of primitive sympathy these outwardly imitative actions are instinctive and are due not to an instinct of imitation but to and An Introduction to Social Psychology79 special adaptations of the principal instinctive dispositions on their sen sory sides and they are secondary to the sympathetic induction of the emotions and feelings they express Imitative actions of this sort are displayed by all the gregarious animals and they are the only kind of which most of the animals seem capable They are displayed on a great scale by crowds of human beings and are the principal source of the wild excesses of which crowds are so often guilty 2 Imitative actions of a second class are simple ideomotor actions The clearest examples are afforded by subjects in hypnosis and in cer tain other abnormal conditions Many hypnotised subjects will if their attention is forcibly drawn to the movements of the hypnotiser imitate his every action A certain proportion of the people of the Malay race are afflicted with a disorder known as tin1h which renders them li able to behave like the hypnotic subject in this respect And all of us if our attention is keenly concentrated on the movements of another per son are apt to make at least in a partial incipient fashion every move ment we observeieg on watching a difficult stroke in billiards the balancing of a tightrope walker the rhythmic swaying of a dancer In all these cases the imitative movement seems to be due to the fact that the visual presentation of the movement of another is apt to evoke the representation of a similar movement of one s own body which like all motor representations tends to realise itself immediately in movement Many of the imitative movements of children are of this class Some person attracts a child s curious attention by reason perhaps of some unfamiliar trait the child becomes absorbed in watching him and pres ently imitates his movements It seems to be in virtue of this simple ideomotor imitation that a child so easily picks up as we say the pecu liarities of gesture and the facial expressions and deportment generally of those among whom he lives This kind of imitation may be in part voluntary and so merges into a third kindi deliberate voluntary or selfconscious imitation 3 Some person or some kind of skilled action excites our admira tion and we take the admired person for our model in all things or deliberately set ourselves to imitate the action Between the second and third kinds is a fourth kind of imitation allied to both and affording for the child a transition from the one to the other In cases of this fourth type the imitator a child say observes a certain action and his attention is concentrated not on the movements but on the effects produced by the movements When the child again
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