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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 10

“The most important effect of punishment, then, is to establish aversive conditions which are avoided by any behavior of “doing something else.” (p. 189)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 9

“Strong emotional predispositions are also rearoused by the beginnings of severely punished behavior. These are the main ingredient of what we speak of as guilt, shame, or a sense of sin.” (p. 187)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 8

“. . . as a second effect of punishment, behavior which has consistently been punished becomes the source of conditioned stimuli which evoke incompatible behavior.” (p. 187)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 7

“The first effect of the aversive stimuli used in punishment is confined to the immediate situation . . . When we stop a child from giggling in church by pinching it severely, the pinch elicits responses which are incompatible with laughing and powerful enough to suppress it.” (p. 186)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 6

“We first define a positive reinforcer as any stimulus the presentation of which strengthens the behavior upon which it is made contingent. We define a negative reinforcer (an aversive stimulus) as any stimulus the withdrawal of which strengthens behavior. Both are reinforcers in the literal sense of reinforcing or strengthening a response. Insofar as […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 5

“The fact that punishment does not permanently reduce a tendency to respond is in agreement with Freud’s discovery of the surviving activity of what he called repressed wishes.” (p. 184)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 4

“More recently, the suspicion has also arisen that punishment does not in fact do what it is supposed to do. An immediate effect in reducing a tendency to behave is clear enough, but this may be misleading. The reduction in strength may not be permanent.” (p. 183)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 3

“In the long run, punishment, unlike reinforcement, works to the disadvantage of both the punished organism and the punishing agency.” (p. 183)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 2

“Reinforcement builds up these tendencies [to behave in certain ways]: punishment is designed to tear them down.” (p. 182)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 12: Punishment, Quote 1

“The commonest technique of control in modern life is punishment.” (p. 182)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 10

“When we speak of the effects of anxiety, we imply that the state itself is a cause, but so far as we are concerned here, the term merely classifies behavior. It indicates a set of emotional predispositions attributed to a special kind of circumstance. Any therapeutic attempt to reduce the “effects of anxiety” must […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 9

“The effect of stimuli which characteristically precede positive reinforcement may be chronic in a world in which “good” things frequently happen. It is not seen in the clinic because it is not troublesome.” (p. 180)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 8

“Since conditioning may take place as the result of one pairing of stimuli, a single aversive event may bring a condition of anxiety under the control of incidental stimuli.” (p. 179)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 7

“In the design of controlling techniques the possibility of generating anxiety as an unfortunate by-product must constantly be kept in mind.” (p. 179)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 6

“Although the biological advantage of avoidance is obvious, the emotional pattern of anxiety appears to serve no useful purpose. It interferes with the normal behavior of the individual and may even disorganize avoidance behavior which would otherwise be effective in dealing with the circumstances.” (p. 178)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 5

“Although avoidance suggests that behavior may be influenced by an event which does not occur, we may account for the effect without violating any fundamental principle of science with the concept of conditioned negative reinforcement.” (p. 176)

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Operants Podcast

Operants podcast is available for download. Sheila Habarad hosts Dr. Julie Vargas, Dr. Joyce Tu, Bruna Colombo dos Santos, and Monalisa Leão. Duration: 1 hour 5 minutes. Here is the link: http://www.bfskinner.org/podcasts/

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 4

“An important example of [the] use of aversive conditioning is the practice of branding an act wrong or sinful. Any behavior which reduces the stimulation arising from the early stages of such an act is then negatively reinforced . . . Many problems in psychotherapy arise from the strength and duration of this effect […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 3

“It is not difficult to show that an organism which is reinforced by the withdrawal of certain conditions should have an advantage in natural selection.” (p. 173)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 2

“Just as we did not define a positive reinforcer as pleasant or satisfying, so in defining a negative reinforcer in terms of its power to reinforce when withdrawn we do not assert that the stimulus is unpleasant or annoying.” (p. 173)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 11: Aversion, avoidance, anxiety, Quote 1

“Painful stimuli are generally aversive, but not necessarily so—as a counterirritant shows. Stimuli which have acquired their aversive power in the process of conditioning are especially unlikely to possess identifying physical properties. A stimulus is known to be aversive only if its removal is reinforcing.” (p. 171)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 8

“Moods and dispositions represent a kind of second-order probability—the probability that a given circumstance will raise the probability of a given response.” (p. 169)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 7

“A man does not neglect his business because of anxiety or worry. Such a statement is at best merely a way of classifying a particular kind of neglect. The only valid cause is the external condition of which the behavior of neglect, as part of an emotional pattern known as anxiety or worry, can […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 6

“It does not help in the solution of a practical problem to be told that some feature of a man’s behavior is due to frustration or anxiety; we also need to be told how the frustration or anxiety has been induced and how it may be altered. In the end, we find ourselves dealing […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 5

“Responses that vary together in an emotion do so in part because of a common consequence . . . Some of the behavior involved in an emotion is apparently unconditioned, however, and in that case the grouping must be explained by evolutionary consequences.” (p. 163)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 4

“In casual discourse and for many scientific purposes some such way of referring to current strength in terms of the variables of which it is a function is often desirable. But so defined, an emotion, like a drive, is not to be identified with physiological or psychic conditions.” (p.163)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 3

“When the man in the street says that someone is afraid or angry or in love, he is generally talking about predispositions to act in certain ways . . . and something like the layman’s mode of classification has a place in a scientific analysis.” (p. 162)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 2

“In the search for what is happening “in emotion” the scientist has found himself at a peculiar disadvantage. Where the layman identifies and classifies emotions not only with ease but with considerable consistency, the scientist in focusing upon responses of glands and smooth muscles and upon expressive behavior has not been sure that he […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 10: Emotions, Quote 1

“The “emotions” are excellent examples of the fictional causes to which we commonly attribute behavior.” (p. 160)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 8

“Behavior is as much a part of the organism as are its anatomical features . . . Since we cannot change the species of an organism, the variable is of no importance in extending our control, but information about species-status enables us to predict characteristic behavior and, in turn, to make more successful use […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 7

“Behavior which is characteristic of a species is attributed to an instinct (of uncertain location or properties) said to be possessed by all members of the species. This is a flagrant example of an explanatory fiction . . . If the instinct of nest-building refers only to the observed tendency of certain kinds of […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 6

“We could say that the eating of salty hors d’oeuvres makes a guest thirsty and that his thirst then drives him to drink. It is simpler, in both theory and practice, to restrict ourselves to the fact that consuming salty hors d’oeuvres leads to drinking.” (p.147)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 5

“So long as the inner event [e.g., need or want] is inferred, it is in no sense an explanation of behavior and adds nothing to a functional account.” (pp. 143-144)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 4

“Needs and wants are likely to be thought of as psychic or mental, while hungers are more readily conceived of as physiological. But the terms are freely used when nothing with these dimensions has been observed. Sometimes the inner operation is inferred from the operation responsible for the strength of the behavior . . […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 3

“Not all deprivation or satiation is concerned with the conspicuous interchange of materials. A man may be “deprived of physical exercise” if he is kept indoors by bad weather; as a result he is especially likely to be active when the weather clears. Here, deprivation consists merely of preventing the occurrence of behavior, and […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 2

“In the search for what is happening “in emotion” the scientist has found himself at a peculiar disadvantage. Where the layman identifies and classifies emotions not only with ease but with considerable consistency, the scientist in focusing upon responses of glands and smooth muscles and upon expressive behavior has not been sure that he […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 9: Deprivation and Satiation, Quote 1

“The discovery that part of the behavior of an organism was under the control of the environment led, as we have seen, to an unwarranted extension of the notion of the stimulus. Writers began to infer stimuli where none could be observed and to include various internal conditions in a “total stimulating situation.” (p. […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 12

“Our “perception” of the world—our “knowledge” of it —is our behavior with respect to the world. It is not to be confused with the world itself or with other behavior with respect to the world or with the behavior of others with respect to the world.” (p. 140)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 11

“. . . “interpretation” is like . . . “attention” . . . we need not find a particular form of behavior to be identified with it. We “interpret” a stimulus as smoke insofar as we tend to respond with behavior appropriate to smoke. We “interpret” it as fog insofar as the probability of […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 10

“We operate in one world—the world of physics. Organisms are part of that world, and they react to it in many ways. Responses may be consistent with each other or inconsistent, but there is usually little difficulty in accounting for either case.” (p. 139)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 9

“Responses to some forms of stimulation are more likely to be “right” than responses to others, in the sense that they are more likely to lead to effective behavior. Naturally these modes are favored, but any suggestion that they bring us closer to the “real” world is out of place here.” (p. 139)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 8

“What happens when an organism responds “as if” a stimulus had other properties? Such behavior seems to indicate that the “perceptual” world—the world as the organism experiences it—is different from the real world. But the difference is actually between responses—between the responses of two organisms or between the responses of one organism under different […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 7

“Stimulus induction on the basis of a “relation” presents no difficulty in a natural science if the relation can be described in physical terms. Where this appears not to be the case, we have to turn to other possibilities . . . ” (p. 138)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 6

“Actually it is possible to condition an organism either to choose the larger of two objects or to choose a particular size no matter what the size of an accompanying object. The relational case is important in most environments. As the organism moves about in space, reinforcements are generally contingent upon relative, rather than […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 5

“An adequate solution [of the problem of induction from one sensory field to another] would require an experimental analysis of the various auxiliary processes through which stimulus control can be extended.” (p. 137)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 4

“An organism will not acquire an abstract response until a reinforcing agency sets up the required contingency. There are no “natural” contingencies which reinforce a response in the presence of a single property without respect to other properties. The necessary contingency apparently requires the mediation of other organisms.” (p. 135-136)

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Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 3

“Abstraction, too, is not a form of action on the part of the organism. It is simply a narrowing of the control exercised by the properties of stimuli. The controlling property cannot be demonstrated upon a single occasion. In other words, a single instance of an abstract response will not tell us very much […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 2

“We are interested, of course, only in conditions or events which have an effect upon behavior. The electromagnetic radiation of radio and television has no effect upon the unequipped organism, except perhaps at very high energy levels. We do not say that the radiation is “not a stimulus because it does not stimulate.” We […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 8: The Controlling Environment, Quote 1

“No matter what our philosophy of behavior may be, we are not likely to deny that the world about us is important. We may disagree as to the nature or extent of the control which it holds over us, but some control is obvious. Behavior must be appropriate to the occasion . . . […]

Science and Human Behavior, Chapter 7: Operant Discrimination, Quote 23

“Just as we may attend to an object without looking at it, so we may look at an object without attending to it. We need not conclude that we must then be looking with an inferior sort of behavior in which the eyes are not correctly used. The criterion is whether the stimulus is […]