Granville Stanley Hall

Granville Stanley

American Psychologist and Educator focused on Childhood Development and Evolutionary Theory, first President of the American Psychological Association and first President of Clark University

Author Quotes

Every theory of love, from Plato down, teaches that each individual loves in the other sex what he lacks in himself.

Gross well says that children are young because they play, and not vice versa; and he might have added, men grow old because they stop playing, and not conversely, for play is, at bottom, growth, and at the top of the intellectual scale it is the eternal type of research from sheer love of truth.

Man is largely a creature of habit, and many of his activities are more or less automatic reflexes from the stimuli of his environment.

Of all work-schools, a good farm is probably the best for motor development.

People don't quit playing because they grow old. They grow old because they quit playing.

Precisely what menstruation is, is not yet very well known.

Puberty for a girl is like floating down a broadening river into an open sea.

The man of the future may, and even must, do things impossible in the past and acquire new motor variations not given by heredity.

The teens are emotionally unstable and pathic. It is a natural impulse to experience hot and perfervid psychic states, and it is characterized by emotionalism. We see here the instability and fluctuations now so characteristic. The emotions develop by contrast and reaction into the opposite.

Abundance and vigor of automatic movements are desirable, and even a considerable degree of restlessness is a good sign in young children.

The years from about eight to twelve constitute a unique period of human life.

Adolescence as the time when an individual 'recapitulates' the savage stage of the race's past.

There is no more wild, free, vigorous growth of the forest, but everything is in pots or rows like a rococo garden... The pupil is in the age of spontaneous variation which at no period of life is so great. He does not want a standardized, over-peptonized mental diet. It palls on his appetite.

Adolescence is a new birth, for the higher and more completely human traits are now born.

This splendid subject [mathematics], queen of all exact sciences, and the ideal and norm of all careful thinking.

All possible truth is practical. To ask whether our conception of chair or table corresponds to the real chair or table apart from the uses to which they may be put, is as utterly meaningless and vain as to inquire whether a musical tone is red or yellow. No other conceivable relation than this between ideas and things can exist. The unknowable is what I cannot react upon. The active part of our nature is not only an essential part of cognition itself, but it always has a voice in determining what shall be believed and what rejected.

Being an only child is a disease in itself.

Civilization is so hard on the body that some have called it a disease, despite the arts that keep puny bodies alive to a greater average age, and our greater protection from contagious and germ diseases.

Every step of the upward way is strewn with wreckage of body, mind, and morals.

Normal children often pass through stages of passionate cruelty, laziness, lying and thievery.

Muscles are in a most intimate and peculiar sense the organs of the will. They have built all the roads, cities and machines in the world, written all the books, spoken all the words, and, in fact done everything that man has accomplished with matter. Character might be a sense defined as a plexus of motor habits.

Education has now become the chief problem of the world, its one holy cause. The nations that see this will survive, and those that fail to do so will slowly perish. There must be re-education of the will and of the heart as well as of the intellect, and the ideals of service must supplant those of selfishness and greed.

Constant muscular activity was natural for the child, and, therefore, the immense effort of the drillmaster teachers to make children sit still was harmful and useless.

The mother’s face and voice are the first conscious objects as the infant soul unfolds, and she soon comes to stand in the very place of God to her child.

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Granville Stanley
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American Psychologist and Educator focused on Childhood Development and Evolutionary Theory, first President of the American Psychological Association and first President of Clark University