Previous | Next
5960616263646566676869707172737475767778798081828384858687888990919293949596979899100101102103104105106107108 of 763
behaviorist, although he certainly respected Watsonian behaviorism,
you know, and I had to learn about the sense organs and the nervous
system and the brain and what not. You had no loopholes. Sumner
would not let you say, “Well, I'm interested in the theoretical”
or “I'm interested in Freudian, so therefore I don't have to pay any
attention to the organism.” You had to pay attention to every damn
thing, and I think, rightly so-- so much so that when I started
By the way, right after I got my masters from him, he
invited me to teach there for a year, and I had the munificant salary
of $150 a month, in 1936-37, which was tremendous. Then I could
take Mamie out to dinner.
In fact, she was in my class. I taught her abnormal
There was no escape from all of the aspects of the complexity
of the human organism, for this man. And by the way, I'm talking
about him as if he were the only professor of psychology at Howard,
and that's not true. I mean, there was Max Meenes, who was a very
good teacher. He died last year. He taught psychology of learning.
But he was a more precise -- I mean, he had outlines of his courses.
He did not have the sweep of Sumner. I mean, you know what Meenes
was going to concentrate on, and if you remembered those things -- I
hope I'm not doing him an injustice. Maybe, instead of talking about
Meenes, I should just tell you that Sumner had a greater sweep and
breadth and scope of man and civilization and values and justice
and what not, than anyone I have ever met.
© 2006 Columbia University
Libraries | Oral History
Research Office | Rights and
Permissions | Help