In this book we shall try to explain why much of contemporary psychology is unsatisfactory. We shall offer an alternative, an approach that, we hope, will help to overcome some of the diffi­ culties to which we draw attention and at the same time will preserve the real advances that have been made by academic psychology. However, one might object, are there not already a great many ‘psychologies’ available? Even in this century we have had associationism, the remnants of classical behaviourism, the gestalt approach, psychodynamics and more recently cognitive psychology (see Margolis 1984). Why do we need yet another ‘-ism’ or ‘-ology’ ? There are many people who would go further. Since we already have many ways to understand the human heart and mind - literature, history, ethics, logic, jurisprudence and anthropology, for instance — why do we need psychology at all? Neither of these questions can be answered in a phrase, but we hope that by the end of this study they will have been adequately dealt with. There is a place for a scientific study of thought, feeling and action, but for a variety of reasons none

of the existing attempts to create such a study has succeeded or, indeed, could succeed.