Greetings from the president-elect of APA

The president-elect of the American Psychological Association joins us in celebrating our anniversary.

By Susan H. McDaniel, PhD

On behalf of the American Psychological Association, it is my great pleasure to attend this reception on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the Society for General Psychology. Let me congratulate the society on reaching this milestone in its history and in particular all those whose work and dedication have ensured its place as a successful and well-respected society.

Over the past seven decades, the society has enjoyed a rich history with an amazing array of illustrious forebearers — names recognizable to psychology students everywhere — Dashill, Munn, Tolman, Seashore, Anastasi, Lindzey, Wertheimer, Kimble, Denmark, Brewer — the list goes on.

According to Div. 1 historians Michael Wertheimer and Brett King, Ernest Hilgard spoke of the creation of Div. 1 in 1945 as the “default” division. Anne Anastasi said that she recalled that those APA members who felt strongly that the division structure would encourage “fractionation” found a home in Div. 1 as the “nondivisive” division. Hilgard said that organizers were united in their opposition to fragmentation and a desire to see the whole discipline integrated or at least reunited. Div. 1 is therefore a microcosm of the entire earlier APA.

The Society for General Psychology now has a long history with many accomplishments. It has a well-respected journal, Review of General Psychology, which began in 1997 and has published over 450 cross-disciplinary psychological articles. Its “Portraits of Pioneers in Psychology” book series goes back to the mid-1970s and is a testament in its own right, paying tribute to scholars in the history of psychology. The society, through its programs, publications and member interactions around scholarly pursuits and social exchanges, has engaged APA members and supported professional collaborations over the past 70 years.

On behalf of APA, I congratulate the society on its 70th anniversary and express my appreciation to all those who have dedicated their time and effort and contributed to the success of this achievement, and sincerely wish the society another seven decades and more of bringing psychology together.