Art + Introspection in Psychology

End of Introspection in Psychology

The 5th International Psychology Congress (Rome, April 1905) decreed the end of Introspection and Intuition in psychological matters. This limited psychology to a scientific perspective that would not always make it more effective and curative. How much would this perspective contribute to the increase in inner well-being?

Below, I report the closing session of Congress, which mandated the abandonment of introspection:




Under the presidency of Professor Giuseppe Sergi.

5th International Psychology Congress.


April 30th, two p.m.

All the Honorary Congress Presidents elected at the inaugural session shall preside.

Professor G. Sergi.


Rome Congress’ closing speech

Many believe that a Congress can and should solve all the problems of science, and if they do not see this result, they think Congresses are useless. This disappointment is perhaps even greater in a Congress like ours, where some expect to find a solution to the problems of the soul, to scatter the shadows that surround them, to clear doubts about human destiny. Yet, this time we can calmly face the judgment about the results got, which are not, nor should be, the solutions to these concerns. Two tendencies and two methods were clear, both here in the Congress and outside it, among thinkers and observers of the issues of the human psyche. Well, we can say that the direction given to psychology studies by this Congress is clear and decisive, despite appearances to the contrary.

Directives of the International Psychology Congress

We have recognized that the observation of phenomena which involve psychological issues can no longer be empirical, but must be scientific and methodical, and also experimental, with precision instruments as in other experimental sciences.

This is a success of unquestionable value.

The scientists who intervened here, according to their different personal studies, have brought scientific contributions of great value and high knowledge that we could consider gained in science: Thus, they have given a right direction to the way to reach truth in the manifestations of the human psyche

Psychology, which has become a science with the contribution of many other sciences from which it is inseparable, will obtain even more universal results; writers and artists, who, until now, have worked empirically and by intuition alone, will benefit from it.

A greeting and a thank you to all those who took part in the Congress and especially to the foreigners who brought the results of their studies to Italy; a thank you also to Professor Sante De Sanctis, who has contributed so much with his work to the success of the Congress.

To consult the full compilation of the acts of congress:

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