Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Highview Road cat amongst the pigeon(s) and Idea #178 Behaviourism

Today the cat was amongst the pigeons as they say..

We feed the birds in our garden  a variety of ways and with a mixture of foodstuffs .
What a cat does..
Now I like cats, and frequently stop and make a fuss of them - some are friendly some less so.

We don't have too many feline visitors to our garden and try and limit them as they have in the past used the borders as makeshift toilets.
There is one cat who does spend some time sitting behind bushes but makes a quick exit when it sees that there are humans around.

Today it had a dramatic encounter with a pigeon here's a little of the aftermath - the pigeon survived in a traumatised state and seems to have,  after taking stock of its situation  made a belated escape (minus quite a few feathers).

Strangely I'm not a big fan of pigeons - although the ones we see are not the stroppy ones you get in Trafalgar Square and other central London locations they are still greedy, taking the majority of food put out  and they're not 'cute' but in the battle with a cat I favour letting the pigeon escape - I suppose we're all a little wary of blood and guts and nature in the raw and the cat does not live by a 'moral code' -hope that the pigeon recovers and enjoys  life in the best way a pigeon can..

Which leads on nicely to Big Idea 178 which is Behaviourism


Those who  shun pontificating on the inner workings but look in a scientific manner and measure the effects of various stimuli are known as behaviourists.
BF's Box
Behaviourism' is aid to cover a multitude of positions. There is though a common underlying theory. The behaviourist takes the mind not to be an inner 'psychic' mechanism and believes it to be to a significant extent constituted and driven  by the larger world.

 John  Broadus Watson 1878- 1958 was the guy who pretty much wrote the book on Behaviourism firstly as an academic but then (after an affair) finding a use for it in the advertising industry

Another influential figure in Behaviourism was the man who gave his name to the Skinner Box - B F Skinner was an academic who seems to have excited both positive and negative reactions to his work.
Behaviourism can be seen as reductionist and the wisdom of the present day favours  a more cognitive approach to human actions.
Here though is a bit about Behaviourism..

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