When Hans Eysenck arrived in Britain from Nazi Germany in 1934, British psychology was concerned chiefly with the testing of mental abilities. By 1934, Britain's then best-known psychological theorist and writer, William McDougall (1871-1938), was in semi-retirement, having failed to persuade a younger generation in America of the importance of instinctive, purposive, genetic and racial factors in human mentality. Thus work on mental tests and factor analysis, as by Charles Spearman and Cyril Burt, at London's University College, seemed the only route towards an acceptable objective science of human psychology that still dealt with important issues and had practical relevance. The practical aspiration of the London School was that testing would aid selection and counselling in education and the world of work. Safety-first and factorial sophistry seemed to be the watchwords. Thirty years later, Hans Eysenck, though himself no slouch at factor analysis, had changed that. While retaining the emphasis on testing -- in his case, by personality questionnaires -- and biological factors, Eysenck would get the best out of behaviourism both for differential psychology and for psychology as a whole.
Accepting the philosophical empiricism of his adoptive country, Eysenck would concern himself [some might say 'content himself'] with what could be 'proved' in psychology. In particular, after early research into aesthetics, hypnosis, humour, social attitudes and projective tests, Eysenck would be dismissive of psychoanalytic thinking and reluctant to be drawn into the thankless task of measuring particular human motivations. Instead, after the War, Eysenck was prepared to accept the broad thrust of Russian and American behaviourism: he would demand and use experimental evidence (even if such evidence had to come chiefly from animals); and he would move psychology towards 'behaviour-therapeutic' intervention regardless of patients' underlying motivations (if any). While accepting the importance of psychometrics and the genetic basis of some of the most important human psychological differences, Eysenck became, with America's B. F. Skinner, joint leader of a movement that would massively expand the profession of clinical psychology. Such psychologists would have something to offer patients whose intelligence was limited (including in psychosis) and whose behavioural problems thus required re-conditioning procedures.
Suitably, Hans Eysenck's Chair in London University was held at the Maudsley Hospital -- London's former 'Bedlam' asylum. His 'progressive', optimistic, best-selling Penguin books of around 1960 made Eysenck the star of British psychology; and his pre-eminence among experts in habit-breaking was attested by his editorship of his first academic journal, the quickly prestigious 'Behaviour Research and Therapy.' Eysenck's most loyal followers (of the London School, deriving its intellectual ancestry from the hereditarian Sir Francis Galton) were undoubtedly those who appreciated his continuing recognition of genetic factors; and this recognition was ever more courageous (especially with regard to racial differences) as crass environmentalism took hold not just of the social sciences but of the media and the soap-opera-viewing public. Yet a much wider range of psychologists owed Eysenck a debt of gratitude for his stress on conditioning and practical therapy. While retaining the Cartesian concern that psychology be scientific and numerate, Eysenck simultaneously succeeded in maintaining therapeutic optimism. Even his 1960's recommendation of amphetamine as an arousal-increasing cure for excessive extraversion and crime could be taken by psychology's many would-be psycho-social engineers as showing that his heart was in the right place. In the 1980's, at the same time as assisting in tracing IQ differences to biological and genetic roots, Eysenck also became keenly involved in high-profile efforts to raise IQ by vitamin and mineral supplementation. When he came to lecture to a capacity audience of 120 in Edinburgh University Psychology Department, in December, 1995, his faith in behaviour therapy (even for obsessive-compulsive conditions) and brief psychotherapy (preventing lung cancer) was unshakeable. Though principally a differential psychologist and personality theorist, Eysenck had plenty to offer other psychologists -- except perhaps those 'cognitive psychologists' who aimed to ignore biology and 'model' human activities on the electronic computer. Eysenck was no therapist himself -- though his quiet and kindly manner and attentive ear could easily have qualified him as a Rogerian counsellor; but he had the genius of a true intellectual who strove to do work that was of wide relevance and humane import.
How, then, is Eysenck so often considered a 'controversial' figure? How did his own biographer (H. B. Gibson, 1980, 'Hans Eysenck: the Man and his Work', London : Peter Owen) compare Eysenck to Freud as a "conquistador" who should best be seen as taking on the establishment of his day -- not least within psychology itself? How did Britain's most cited psychologist remain unknighted? How did Hans Eysenck himself, for his own autobiography (1990, London : W. H. Allen), call himself 'Rebel with a Cause'?
Hans Eysenck grew up in Berlin as the child of an actor father and a filmstar mother who re-married (to a Jewish film producer) when Hans was nine. Because of his mother's work and new liaison, requiring her emigration to France, Eysenck was brought up in Berlin by his maternal grandmother (a one-time opera singer who, having been badly crippled, would herself be taken off to die in a Nazi concentration camp). Gibson (op. cit.) records as follows: "Living in his grandmother's flat in Berlin, Hans appears to have had a very free upbringing...in fairly comfortable circumstances surrounded by literary and cultural influences... He seems to have been a precocious and self-willed boy, well accustomed to having his own way."
Certainly, Hans was an intelligent and independent-minded schoolchild who once, at eight, bit a tyrannical schoolteacher who had insisted that the tone-deaf Hans must sing. [Charles Dickens' 'David Copperfield' also bit a bullying teacher.] Later, Hans would contest other teachers' anti-Semitism. On hearing that German Jews were supposed to have been cowardly during the First World War, the adolescent Eysenck promptly made his way to the public library where he ascertained -- as he would subsequently explain in school -- that Iron Crosses had in fact been awarded with greater relative frequency to Jewish than to Gentile soldiers. In his autobiography, Eysenck records how he stood unmoved through a Hitler rally. His only surprise was at others' excitement and at realizing that war with Britain and France must be inevitable. Being a natural athlete doubtless further boosted his confidence in his own enviable gifts: as well as being a good amateur boxer, he became German Junior Tennis Champion.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, in view of his parents' divorce and the Nazification of the schools, the young Eysenck had little general respect for adult authority: in 1972 he would record (in 'Psychology is About People', London : Allen Lane): "grown-ups were a fraud and a delusion...their precepts and their actions were miles apart...it was a toss-up whether they were more vicious or more ridiculous in their behaviour." Eysenck certainly had enough going for him to resist his parents' determination that he should go on the stage -- though he would, of course, become perhaps the greatest academic showman of the field which he finally chose. [Eysenck's mastery of self-presentation was once remarked by Arthur Jensen as the two of them toured Australian universities in the days of the 1970s when they had both become 'heretics.' Asked by Australian newsies for a 1,000-word statement that could fit a slot on the front page of their evening newspaper, Art confessed this kind of thing was not his bag; but he called Hans across, and Hans proceeded to deliver what turned out to be exactly 997 words.]
Already as a child there were, then, harbingers of Eysenck's later character, individuality, self-possession and flair. Not so many young Germans of 1934 sought to emigrate to Britain and join the Royal Air Force (from which Eysenck's German origins would in fact bar him -- so his contribution to the war effort was as a fire-watcher in 'Dad's Army'). Yet Eysenck soon discovered that opposition to Hitler was not all it might have been in London of the mid-1930's. Studying psychology (since his school curriculum had not included enough science and Latin to allow him to read physics), Eysenck soon found himself surrounded by pacifists who were not keen to fight Hitler at all. Then, after the War, Eysenck saw his psychology colleagues rise up in indignation as he became one of the first (in a Britain that was very respectful of the Soviet war effort) to point out that fascism and communism had a lot in common -- probably including the sexual perversions of which any bright schoolboy in Berlin would have been well aware. Eysenck's recognition of 'authoritarianism-of-the-left' (1954, 'The Psychology of Politics', London : Routledge, New York : Praeger) revealed to psychologists a less cosy side of an academic who was generally becoming popular with the public for his Penguin books which broadly espoused liberalism and humanitarianism, poked fun at the prisons and the monarchy, and urged the need for more psychology and more psychologists. Eysenck's later willingness to take on feminism (e.g. in Ihsan Al-Issa's 'Gender and Psychopathology', 1982) would set the seal on his being beyond the pale of the latter-day social psychologist.
The 1960's, culminating in the landmark works 'The Biological Basis of Personality' and 'Personality Structure and Measurement' (the latter co-authored with his wife, Sybil) saw Eysenck established as a towering figure in British psychology. Though some found his hereditarianism about crime too daring, Eysenck's position was broadly respected and his sallies against psychoanalysis and the then-unproved causal link between smoking and cancer were enjoyed. Yet the failure to clinch his linkage of crime to extraversion made Eysenck look afresh at other options. On the one hand, soon with the spur given by Arthur Jensen's troubles of 1969, Eysenck took up the standard for the 'general intelligence' factor ('g') where Burt had left it. The year 1967 brought perhaps Eysenck's single most influential paper, linking general intelligence to mental speed. Further, Eysenck would go on to support Jensen's genetic linkage of IQ to race: in 1971, Eysenck published 'Race, Intelligence and Education' (1971, London : Temple Smith) -- for which he would be physically assaulted by "progressive intellectuals" apparently hailing from Birmingham University. On the other hand, around 1970, Eysenck introduced his major claim that psychopathy, psychosis, sexual perversion and genius all had something in common -- called Psychoticism ('P') and measured by questionnaires inviting subjects to declare themselves disillusioned with, cynical about, and suspicious of other people.
Both 'g' and 'P' were to offer much more purchase on crime than had Extraversion. Yet both were to yield continuing controversy. In touching on 'g' differences, Eysenck had trodden on key territory for the then popular subject of sociology. Eysenck's 'Inequality of Man' (1973, London : Temple Smith, San Diego : Knapp) did nothing to dispel suspicions that he saw a wide range of social problems (as well as crime) as arising from people's own mental abilities (or lack of them) and their genes: Eysenck's writing here was anticipating the row that would eventually burst in 1994, in America, over 'The Bell Curve.'
The 'P' dimension yielded trouble of a more academic type: there were many criticisms of the scale's skewness (suggesting it tapped interaction effects between other, more basic variables) and about its purely empirical, a-theoretical nature. More seriously, Eysenck's insistence on his 'Gigantic Three' personality dimensions ('N'[euroticism], 'E'[xtraversion] and 'P') put him at loggerheads with virtually the entire world-wide fraternity of psychometrician-psychologists that he had collected around himself and his second journal, 'Personality and Individual Differences.' Virtually all the other academic luminaries of personality testing had come to believe that at least five personality dimensions (their 'Big Five') required recognition -- and it was not even that they envisaged one of these dimensions to be the 'g' factor. [Despite 'g' being acknowledged by John Carroll (the leading American factor-analytic psychologist having an original loyalty to 'multiple intelligences' -- 1993, 'Human Cognitive Abilities'), any mention of IQ and the 'g' factor had by the 1990's become taboo in the 'politically correct' American universities.]
Around and after his retirement in 1980, Hans Eysenck found further ways of setting the cat among the pigeons. Notably he flirted with (or as friends would say, maintained an open mind about) astrology and parapsychology (even before Camille Paglia and Edinburgh LUniversity had 'come out' for these topics) and supported the claims of a little-known German/Yugoslavian doctor that cancer and heart-disease could be prevented by remarkably brief psychotherapy (or 'bibliotherapy', in so far as some at-risk subjects were just given a pamphlet). Still, 'g' and 'P' provided the foci of Eysenck's main useful work. In particular, Eysenck and co-workers provided increasingly compelling evidence for IQ being linked to mental speed of processing even for very simple information: IQ was found to correlate (sometimes substantially) with reaction-times and also 'brain waves' ('evoked cortical potentials' found in EEG records). As to 'P', Eysenck produced a major review, 'Genius' (Cambridge University Press), just two years before his death.
The last year has been an appalling time for the London School.
No serious support has been forthcoming for the message of 'The
Bell Curve': to talk of IQ as causal to life successes and abiding
racial differences has evidently become increasingly 'controversial'
-- at least for the mass media. No sooner did Hans Eysenck read
my own book, 'The 'g' Factor', and generously decide to award
it high praise than it was withdrawn by 'academic publisher' John
Wiley. Flushed with their success, Wiley went on to refuse to
publish Art Jensen's major work on intelligence -- which eventually,
after rejection by several mainstream US publishers, was scheduled
to end up being produced by a small mail-order house offering
a service that is only a slight improvement on 'vanity' publishing.
Loyal Eysenckians and race realists Phil Rushton and Richard Lynn
could also only get published by mail-order houses. In November,
1996, leading hereditarian Lee Willerman (University of Texas)
died prematurely -- leaving Tom Bouchard and Sandra Scarr as the
only lively writers of hereditarian persuasion in the USA. In
August, 1997, it was revealed that the name of 92-year-old leading
psychometrician-psychologist Ray Cattell had come under a cloud
at the American Psychological Association. In Edinburgh, I paid
the ultimate academic penalty for my collection of thoughts about
race, IQ, sex, eugenics and paedophilia while trying to maintain
attention for my de-published book: I was sacked for deploring
the undiscriminating paedohysteria that had swept through the
USA and was arriving in Britain. Now the London School's leading
light himself is gone. Yet such disasters will be survived. Despite
everything, all of us in the London School have been prepared
by the victimization that Hans Eysenck had to endure as he spoke
words of truth in defence of Arthur Jensen and other hereditarian
scholars; and all of us are determined on the same 'bloody but
unbowed' attitude which William McDougall commended and which
came naturally, apparently from his earliest years, to Hans. Truth
will prevail in the end, any Westerner must believe. It is just
a question of time -- as for Galileo (now forgiven by the Pope),
Darwin (eventually buried in Westminster Abbey, thanks to Galton's
initiative) and Freud (now celebrated in the thinking of some
evolutionary psychologists). Hans Eysenck will eventually stand
as the psychologist who kept the London School together and advanced
it massively, even if, qua 'rebel', there was never long to wait
before the next assault on unmerited authority and ideologically
A full CHRONOLOGY, a BIOGRAPHICAL SUMMARY, details of where to find PICTURES of Hans, and other biographical material can be found below.
1916 Born March 4 to Eduard Anton Eysenck (actor, d. 1972) and Ruth Eysenck (née Werner, stage name Helga Molander, d. 1986). The marriage soon collapsed; Hans was entrusted to Ruth's mother (Frau Werner, once an opera singer); and Ruth married Max Glass (film producer and writer). As the Nazi influence grew, Ruth and Max (who were Jewish) were forced to leave Germany for France. Frau Werner, who had been badly crippled, would eventually die in a concentration camp. After the fall of France, Max's fortune was exhausted bribing the Nazis to release Ruth from internment; but she eventually joined him in South America, a new fortune was built, and the couple returned to Paris.
Schools: Bismarck Gymnasium, Berlin; Friedrich Wilhelm Real-Gymnasium, Berlin.
1926 Holiday at Newhaven. (Eysenck actually had relatives in Britain but he did not discover this till much later.)
1930 Attended boarding school on the Isle of Wight. (In Germany, Eysenck refused to join the Hitler Youth and became a member of the moderate Social Democratic Party.)
1933 Study leave in Exeter (studying literature and history). (One of Eysenck's tasks was to bring out of Germany as much of the family fortune as possible -- converted into antique postage stamps etc. Another task was the care of his grandmother.)
1934 Leaves Germany for Dijon and London. Enrolled at Pitman's College to prepare for London Matriculation examination (in French, Maths, English and Physics).
1935 Enrolled to read for Psychology Honours at University College London. [The Psychology Department had been created with the appointment of William McDougall as Reader in Experimental Psychology in 1903 and was subsequently developed by Charles Spearman and Cyril Burt.]
1937 Appeared on television (Nov. 4) in 'Experiments in Science', a programme organized by Cyril Burt.
1938 B.A., University of London. Marriage to graduate student Dr Margaret D. Davies (with whom Eysenck published one article, on ageing, in 1946). (Eysenck's son Michael, today Professor of Psychology at London's Royal Holloway and Bedford New College, was born to this marriage in 1944 (8th Feb.). At forty, Michael would apply for the Chair of Psychology at Edinburgh and be turned down in a major misjudgment by the LUniversity: his 'Handbook of Cognitive Psychology' was soon a best-seller, and his book with his father, 'Personality and Individual Differences' was favourably reviewed in 'Nature' -- a rare distinction for psychological authors.)
1939 Review of L. L. Thurstone's (1938) 'Primary Mental Abilities' (Brit. J. Educational Psychol.); 'Primary mental abilities' (Brit. J. Educational Psychol.). ["....Eysenck applied Burt's method of factor analysis to Thurstone's correlation matrix of 56 diverse tests and showed the existence of a large general factor, equivalent to Spearman's g, on which all of the tests were loaded and which accounted for more of the total variance than any of the primary factors identified by Thurstone's method of multiple factor analysis which rotated the several primary factors to simple structure, a procedure that, of mathematical necessity, obliterated the general factor, creating the false impression that a general factor did not exist in the matrix." (A.R.Jensen, 1997, in H. Nyborg, The Scientific Study of Human Nature) To take on America's leading psychometrician while himself barely 23 was a remarkable coup -- though Eysenck would obviously have had Burt's help. As Jensen records (op. cit.), Burt said Eysenck was his "most brilliant and industrious student."]
1940 Ph. D., University of London (on the psychology of aesthetics).
1941 'An experimental study of the improvement of mental and physical functions of the improvement of mental and physical functions in the hypnotic state' (Brit. J. Medical Psychol.). [This research followed up results of William McDougall, summarized in McDougall's (1926) 'Outline of Abnormal Psychology'. Eysenck lectured extensively on hypnosis during the war years and Gibson records he was then "the foremost authority on hypnosis in Britain. In his sixties, Eysenck would say that, if he were starting out in psychology again, with a free hand, he would work primarily on hypnosis.]
1942 Appointed Senior Research Officer at Mill Hill Emergency Hospital [where the Maudsley Hospital had been evacuated].
1944 'General and social attitudes' (J. Social Psychol.); 'Types of personality: a factorial study of 700 neurotics' (J. Mental Science).
1945 'Graphological analysis and psychiatry: an experimental study.' (Brit. J. Psychiatry.); 'Primary and secondary suggestibility: an experimental and statistical study' (with D. Furneaux; J. Experimental Psychol.).
1947 'Dimensions of Personality'; granted British citizenship.
1948 'Neuroticism and handwriting' (J. abnormal & social Psychol.).
1949 'Training in clinical psychology: an English point of view' (American Psychologist) [At this point, Eysenck still took the conventional British view that psychologists should not themselves give therapy.] Visit to USA (Visiting Professor, University of Pennsylvania) to familiarize himself with clinical psychology there. [He was impressed by the parapsychology laboratory at Duke University set up by Joseph and Louisa Rhine, who had themselves first worked under William McDougall.]
1950 Appointed Reader in Sub-Department of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry; 'Criterion analysis -- an application of the hypothetico-deductive method to factor analysis' (Psychol. Review); 'Schizothymia-cyclothymia as a dimension of personality: 1' (J. Personality); married Sybil Bianca Guiletta (daughter of violinist Max Rostal OBE), by whom there would be three sons and one daughter (Connie, b. 1957).
1951 'Primary social attitudes as related to social class and political attitudes' (Brit. J. Sociology); 'The inheritance of neuroticism' (with D. B. Prell; J. Mental Science).
1952 'The Scientific Basis of Personality'; 'The effects of psychotherapy' (J. Consulting Psychol.); 'Schizothymia-cyclothymia as a dimension of personality: 2' (J. Personality); Oxford lecture to British Psychological Society (Eysenck was dubious as to the efficacy of psychotherapy and a professor of psychiatry ran down the aisle shouting 'Traitor!').
1953 'The Structure of Human Personality'; 'Uses and Abuses of Psychology' [Penguin] (critical of psychoanalysis); 'The logical basis of factor analysis' (American Psychologist).
1954 'The Psychology of Politics'.
1955 Appointed Professor of Psychology, Institute of Psychiatry, University of London; 'Cortical inhibition, figural after-effect, and the theory of personality' (J. abnormal & social Psychol.)
1956 'Sense and Nonsense in Psychology' [Penguin]; 'The Causes and Cures of Neurosis' (with S. J. Rachman); 'The inheritance of extraversion-introversion' (Acta Psychologica); 'The psychology of politics and the personality similarities between fascists and communists' (Psychol. Bulletin); 'Maudsley Medical Questionnaire' (Revista di Psicologia). First article by Sybil Eysenck (in J. Mental Science).
1957 'The Dynamics of Anxiety and Hysteria'; 'Drugs and personality' (with H. C. Holland and D. S. Trouton; J. Mental Science); 'Perceptual Processes of Mental Illness' (With G. W. Granger and J. C. Brengelman).
1958 Lecture to Royal Medico-Psychological Association (critical of psychiatry and urging separate development for clinical psychology); 'A short questionnaire for the measurement of two dimensions of personality' (J. Applied Psychol.).
1959 'Review of the Rorschach Test' (in O. K. Buros, 5th Mental Measurement Yearbook); 'The Maudsley Personality Inventory'; 'Learning theory and behaviour therapy' (J. Mental Science).
1960 'The Structure of Human Personality' (1st edition); Editor: 'Handbook of Abnormal Psychology', 1st edn; 'Behaviour Therapy and the Neuroses'; 'Conditioning and personality' (Brit. J. Psychol.).
1962 'The position of hysterics and dysthymics in a two-dimensional framework of personality description' (with G. Claridge; J. abnormal & social Psychol.); 'Know Your Own IQ' (giving annoyance to many in the testing movement).
1963 'Experiments with Drugs'; 'The biological basis of personality' (Nature); 'On the dual nature of extraversion' (with Sybil Eysenck; Brit. J. social & clinical Psychol.); Editor of 'Behaviour Research & Therapy' [1963-1978].
1964 D. Sc., University of London; 'The biological basis of criminal behaviour' (Nature); 'Crime and Personality' (1st edition); 'Manual of the Eysenck Personality Inventory' (with Sybil Eysenck); 'Experiments in Behaviour Therapy' (ed.); 'Personality and the measurement of intelligence' (with O. White); 'The effects of psychotherapy reconsidered' (Acta Psychologica); 'Biology and science' (New Society). Addressed a large audience at Oxford University Psychology Society.
1965 'Smoking, Health and Personality'; 'Experiments in Motivation' (with P. L. Broadhurst); 'Fact and Fiction in Psychology' [Penguin]; 'Extraversion and the acquisition of eyeblink and GSR conditioned responses' (Psychol. Bull.).
1966 'The Effects of Psychotherapy'; 'Check Your Own IQ'.
1967 'The Biological Basis of Personality'; 'Intellectual assessment: a theoretical and experimental approach' (Brit. J. Educational Psychol.); 'On the unitary nature of extraversion' (with Sybil Eysenck; Acta Psychologica); 'Salivary response to lemon juice as a measure of introversion' (with Sybil Eysenck; Perceptual & Motor Skills); 'Personality patterns in various groups' (Occupational Psychology); 'Personality and extrasensory perception' (J. Society for Psychical Research).
1968 'A factorial study of psychoticism as a dimension of personality' (with Sybil Eysenck; Multivariate Behav. Research); 'A theory of the incubation of anxiety/fear response' (Behaviour Research & Therapy).
1969 'Personality Structure and Measurement' (with Sybil Eysenck)
1970 'The Structure of Human Personality' (3rd edition); 'Explanation and the concept of personality' (In R. Borger & F. Cioffi, Explanation in the Behavioural Sciences); 'Autobiographical sketch' (In G. Lindzey, A History of Psychology in Autobiography).
1971 'Race, Intelligence and Education' (defending the views of Arthur Jensen, the ongoing victim of a witch-hunt organized in the USA by the Party for Workers' Power) (Professor Jensen's own colleagues had tossed him to the wolves.); 'Social attitudes and class' (Brit. J. soc. & clin. Psychol.).
1972 'Primaries or second-order factors: a critical consideration of Cattell's 16PF battery' (Brit. J. soc. & clin. Psychol.); 'Psychology is About People' [dedicated 'To Sybil, my love']; 'The personality and attitudes of working class British communists and fascists' [being Thelma Coulter's thesis work, 1953 -- she had died in a car crash, so her Ph.D. under Eysenck had remained unpublished] (J. Social Psychol.); 'Conditioning, introversion-extraversion and the strength of the nervous system' (with A. Levey; in V. D. Nebilitsyn & J. A. Gray, Biological Basis of Individual Behaviour).
1973 'The Inequality of Man'; 'The Experimental Study of Freudian Theories' (ed., with G. D. Wilson); Editor: 'Handbook of Abnormal Psychology', 2nd edn; Assaulted by three 'students' while lecturing on IQ and EEG at the London School of Economics (Eysenck had for some while been fiercely condemned by a group calling themselves 'Progressive Intellectuals' at Birmingham University. They were thought to be identified with the British Communist Party (Marxist-Leninist).) The UK's National Union of Students orders its branches to prevent lectures on campus by Eysenck. 'The ethics of science and the duties of scientists' (British Association for the Advancement of Science).
1974 'Theories of parapsychological phenomena' (Encyclopaedia Britannica).
1975 'Manual of the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire' (with Sybil Eysenck); 'The nature of extraversion: a genetical analysis' (with L. Eaves; J. Personality & Social Psychology); 'The Future of Psychiatry'; 'Planets, stars and personality' (New Behaviour); 'Precognition in rats' (J. Parapsychology).
1976 'Psychoticism as a Dimension of Personality' (with Sybil Eysenck); 'Sex and Personality'; 'The Measurement of Personality'; 'The learning theory model of neurosis -- a new approach' (Behaviour Research & Therapy); 'Genetic factors in personality development' (In A. R. Kaplan, Human Behaviour Genetics).
1977 Lecture tour of Australia with Arthur Jensen (attracting student protests, scuffles and smoke bombs); 'Crime and Personality', 3rd edition; 'Personality and factor analysis: a reply to Guilford' (Psychol. Bulletin); 'Block and psychoticism' (with Sybil Eysenck; J. abnormal Psychol.); 'Personality and the classification of adult offenders' (with Sybil Eysenck and J. Rust; Brit. J. Criminology); 'You and Neurosis'
1978 'The Psychological Basis of Ideology' (ed., with G. Wilson); 'Psychopathy, personality and genetics' (with Sybil Eysenck; in R. D. Hare & Daisy Schalling, Psychopathic Behaviour); 'An empirical study of the relation between astrological factors and personality' (with J. Mayo and O. White; J. Social Psychology); 'An exercise in mega-silliness' (American Psychologist).
1979 'The Structure of Intelligence'; 'The Psychology of Sex' (with G. D. Wilson);
'Memory-scanning, introversion-extraversion and levels of processing' (with M. C. Eysenck; J. Research in Personality); 'The conditioning model of neurosis' (Behavioral & Brain Sciences -- with comments by some thirty authors, including J. A. Gray, J. Wolpe and M. Zuckerman); 'A psychological theory of hysteria' (in A. Roy, Hysteria); 'The Causes and Effects of Smoking'; 'Sport and personality' (with D. K. B. Nias and D. N. Cox; Advances in Behavior Research and Therapy).
1980 First issue of 'Personality & Individual Differences' (edited by Eysenck) featured the report of a correlation of .80 between EEG waves and IQ by Alan and Elaine Hendrickson (who worked in Eysenck's unit).
1981 'A Model of Personality' (ed.); 'The Intelligence Controversy' (with L. Kamin); 'Psychological factors as predictors of marital satisfaction' (with J. A. Wakefield; Advances in Behaviour Research and Therapy); First Festschrift for Hans Eysenck published (ed. R. Lynn) Contributors: D. E. Broadbent, C. R. Brand, P. L. Broadhurst, R. B. Cattell, G. Claridge, D. W. J. Corcoran, L. Eaves, P. A. Young, A. Gale, H. B. Gibson, J. A. Gray, D. C. Kendrick, R. Lynn, D. K. B. Nias, S. J. Rachman, R. D. Savage, G. Wilson
1982 'A Model of Intelligence' (ed.); 'Astrology: Science or Superstition' (with D. K. B. Nias); 'Explaining the Unexplained: Mysteries of the Paranormal' (with C. Sargent.
1983 'Diagnosis and clinical assessment' (with J. A. Wakefield and A. F. Friedman; Annual Review of Psychology); 'Smoking, nicotine and electrocortical activity' (with D. M. Warburton; Psychopharmacology Therapy); 'Know Your Own Psi-Q' (with C. Sargent); 'Special review of 'The Psychology of the Planets' [Francoise Gauquelin]' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'The roots of creativity: cognitive ability or personality trait?' (Roeper Review); 'Parapsychology: status and prospects' (In W. G. Roll, J. Beloff and R. A. White, Research in Parapsychology); 'Methodological errors by critics of astrological claims' (Astro-Psychological Problems); 'I Do: Your Guide to a Happy Marriage.'
1985 'Personality and Individual Differences: a Natural Science Approach' (with Michael Eysenck); 'Decline and Fall of the Freudian Empire.'
1986 Publication of 'Hans Eysenck: Consensus and Controversy' (eds. Sohan and Celia Modgil; one of a series on 'controversial' psychologists including Lawrence Kohlberg, Noam Chomsky, Arthur Jensen, and B. F. Skinner) (Contributions by H. B. Gibson, N. Martin, P. Costa, A. Jensen, C. Brand, E. Erwin, C. Barbrack, G. Wilson, C. Spielberger, C. Sargent, J. Loehlin, G. Claridge, J. Carlson, J. Ray, P. Kline, A. Lazarus, D. Gilbert, P. Burch, D. Nias. Introduction and Conclusion by Hans Eysenck.); 'Intelligence, reaction time (RT) and a new "odd-man-out" RT paradigm' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Theoretical Foundations of Behavior Therapy' (with Irene Martin).
1987 'Review of 'Scientific Excellence' [D. N. Jackson & J. P. Rushton]' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Anomalous phenomena and orthodox science' (Behavioral & Brain Sciences, pp. 584-5).
1988 Recipient of American Psychological Association's Distinguished Scientific Award; 'The concept of 'intelligence': useful or useless? (Editorial for 'Intelligence'); 'The Causes and Cures of Criminality' (with G. H. Gudjonsson).
1989 'Genes, Culture and Personality: An Empirical Approach' (with L. J. Eaves and N. G. Martin; bringing together and providing modern psychogenetic analysis of many years of data from the Maudsley sample of monozygotic and dizygotic twins).
1990 'Decline and Fall of the Freudian Empire' [re-issued by Scott-Townsend, Washington]; 'Dimensions of personality: 16, 5 or 3?' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Biological dimensions of personality' (in L. A. Pervin, Handbook of Personality Theory and Research); 'Rebel with a Cause: The Autobiography of Hans Eysenck.'
1991 'Personality, stress and disease: an interactionist perspective' (Psychological Inquiry); 'Raising IQ through vitamin and mineral supplementation' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Smoking, Personality and Stress'; 'Eysenck Personality Scales' (with Sybil Eysenck); 'Science and racism' (Introduction to R. Pearson: Race, Intelligence and Bias in Academe); 'Obituary for Michel Gauquelin' (The Independent [London]).
1992 'Four ways five factors are not basic' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Psychosocial factors, cancer and ischaemic heart disease' (British Medical Journal); 'A reply to Costa and McCrae: P, or A and C -- the role of theory' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Primary trait measurement of the 21 components of the P-E-N system' (with P. Barrett, G. Wilson and C. Jackson; European Journal of Psychological Assessment).
1993 US Presidential Citation for Scientific Contribution; 'From DNA to social behaviour: conditions for a paradigm of personality research' (In J. Hettema & I. J. Deary, Foundations of Personality); 'Prediction of cancer and coronary heart disease as a function of method of questionnaire administration' (Psychol. Reports); 'The biological basis of intelligence' (In P. A. Vernon, Biological Approaches to the Study of Intelligence); 'Creativity and personality: word association, origence and psychoticism' (Creativity Research Journal); 'Creativity and personality' (Psychological Inquiry); 'Explaining the Unexplained: Mysteries of the Paranormal (with C. L. Sargent; 2nd edn).
1994 US William James Fellow Award (American Psychological Society); 'A biological theory of intelligence' (In D. K. Detterman, Current Topics in Human Intelligence); 'Meta-analysis and its problems' (British Medical Journal).
1995 'Genius: A Natural History of Creativity.'
1996 Centennial Award for Distinguished Contributions to Clinical Psychology (American Psychological Association); Foundation Medal Hans Juergen Eysenck Institute, Winterthur, Switzerland; 'Special review of 'Hormones, Sex and Society [Helmuth Nyborg]' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.); 'Special review of 'The 'g' Factor' [Chris Brand]' (Person. & Indiv. Diffs.).
1997 Second Festschrift for Hans Eysenck published (ed. Helmuth Nyborg; Contributors: M. Zuckerman, C. R. Brand, J. A. Gray et al., J. Strelau, B. Zawadzki, D. K. B. Nias et al., Sybil Eysenck, A. Raine, G. H. Gudjonsson, G. D. Wilson, W. Revelle, A. R. Jensen, P. A. Vernon, R. Lynn, I. J. Deary, N. Brody, H. B. Gibson, Irene Martin, G. Claridge, R. M. Stelmack, J. P. Rushton, H. Nyborg, A. Furnham, S. Ertel). Died at home, September 4.
In press 'Personality and the biosocial model of antisocial and
criminal behaviour' (In A. Raine et al., Biosocial Bases of Violence).
A fine picture of Hans at c. 65 appears at http://www.iop.bpmf.ac.uk/home/depts/psychol/obituary.htm.
Two nice, late pictures of Hans, taken in August, 1996 at Lake Placid (one of them with his young grand-daughter, Eve) can be found at <http://home.sprynet.com/sprynet/russellk/hansjeys.htm> together with an interview with Roberta Russell and details of how to purchase three Eysenck videotapes, 'On Genius', 'On the Decline and Fall of Psychoanalysis', and his autobiographical 'Rebel With a Cause'.
For a nice picture of Hans in younger days, go to <http://www.psych101.com/bio/eysenck.html>. Below is the associated text at that site, excerpted from 'Personality', 3rd edn, Jerry M. Burger. [Burger offers a view broadly similar to my own of the "rebellious" Hans. Personally, I suppose Hans always felt he had won the Oedipal competition, in that no-one ever challenged his close relationship with his grandmother.... Yet he must have felt there was something odd as his Mama besported herself in Paris while he was in Berlin?... Hans himself prefers to draw a veil over presumably once-painful matters. Similarly, his autobiography offers no insight into his first marriage: as far as I can recall, Hans' only complaint about his first wife was that she was a heavy smoker. Still, one entirely respects Hans' determination to insist that he made his own life in line with his own nature, requirements and earlier choices. It is perhaps not very 'sympathique' when a person claims to have gone through life in his own way, little affected by figures whom others would expect to be crucial to personality development. But I happen to agree that is not uncommonly the correct analysis -- at least for people endowed by genes with will-power and having been obliged, early on in life, to decide on a plan (or, as Alfred Adler called it, a 'lifestyle').]
If our heredity plays a large role in determining personality, as Eysenck has argued, then Hans Eysenck may have been born to be the center of attention whatever field he chose to enter. Eysenck was born in Germany in 1916 into a family of celebrities. His father, Eduard Eysenck, was an accomplished actor and singer, something of a matinee idol in Europe. His mother, whose stage name was Helga Molander, was also a silent film star. They planned a glamorous career in the entertainment field for Hans, who at age 8 had a small role in a motion picture. However, like many Hollywood marriages today, Eysenck's parents divorced when he was young (only later to marry other show business people). Most of Eysenck's early years were spent with his grandmother in Berlin.
Upon graduating from public school in Berlin, the rebellious Eysenck decided not only to pursue a career in physics and astronomy, much to his family's displeasure, but to do so abroad. After a year in France, he moved to England where he eventually completed his Ph.D. at the University of London. Like so many others at the time, Eysenck left Germany in 1934 in part to escape the rise of the nazis. "Faced with having to join the Nazi storm troops if I wanted to go to a university," he wrote, "I knew that there was no future for me in my unhappy homeland" (Eysenck, 1982, p. 289). After military service in World War II, Eysenck returned to the University of London, where he has spent most of his career.
Although he never pursued the career in show business his parents desired, this does not mean he has avoided the public's eye. In addition to his widely respected work and high level of productivity (more than 50 books), Eysenck often appears to seek out and dive right into some of the biggest controversies in psychology. In 1952 he published a paper challenging the effectiveness of psychotherapy. He was especially critical of psychoanalysis, pointing out that empirical evidence at the time showed psychoanalysis to be no better than receiving no treatment at all. Because of his early acknowledgment that individual differences in intelligence are largely inherited, Eysenck was often unfairly associated with those who argued that blacks are inherently less intelligent than whites. In 1980 he published a book arguing that the case for cigarettes as a cause of health problems is not strong. Critics were particularly harsh when they discovered that some of this work was sponsored by American tobacco companies.
The lifelong combative style caused one biographer to call Eysenck the "controversialist in the intellectual world" (Gibson, 1981, p. 253). Eysenck would no doubt enjoy this title. "From the days of opposition to Nazism in my early youth, through my stand against Freudianism and projective techniques, to my advocacy of behavior therapy and genetic studies, to more recent issues, I have usually been against the establishment and in favor of the rebels," he wrote. "[But] I prefer to think that on these issues the majority were wrong, and I was right" (1982, p. 298).
The full biography for Hans is still that by one of Hans' students,
H. B. GIBSON, 1981, 'Hans Eysenck: the Man and His Work', London,
Peter Owen. When in doubt as to details in the above, I have preferred
Gibson's version to others. Also, I would like to say that I find
Gibson's (Chapter 9) analogy of Eysenck with Freud, both of them
"conquistadors", thoughtful and indeed compelling.
Hans provided his own autobiographical sketch in G. Lindzey, 1979,
'A History of Psychology in Autobiography', San Francisco, Freeman.
An account of the problems of IQ-psychologists Eysenck, Jensen,
Rushton, Lynn and Brand with the censorious forces of social environmentalism,
latter-day-Marxism and 'political correctness' is given by Roger
Pearson (1991, 1997) in his 'Race Differences and Bias in Academe'
(Washington : Scott-Townsend). Internet coverage of Eysenck, Jensen,
Herrnstein, Murray, Rushton, Lynn and Brand can be found at the
site which deals with 'heterodox intellectuals' (including Camille
Paglia and Roger Scruton):
According to Joan Freeman (Guardian, 8 x '97), Eysenck
"claimed to have a passion for poetry and a near-photographic
memory." However, around 1980 I received correspondence from
Hans containing the remark that he 'could not relate to modern
poetry.' More worryingly, in a travesty of Hans's views on political
psychology, Joan Freeman represents Hans as having "devised
interesting and useful concepts such as Tough-and-Tender-minded
to explain political attitudes, the Tough being to the right and
the Tender to the left" -- a wonderful example of wishful
thinking by an afficionado of the Guardian! That
Joan Freeman should further claim "constant accusations of
manipulating figures to produce his desired results" shows
an over-inventive mind: there were no such accusations -- though,
in his retirement, Hans attracted criticism for standing by the
certainly unlikely empirical claims of R. Grossarth-Maticek that
psychotherapy could prevent cancer and in people of particular
personality types (see review by D. K. B. Nias in The Scientific
Study of Human Nature [ed. H. Nyborg, 1997, Pergamon]).
This Obituary & Record was compiled chiefly over the weekend
after Hans Eysenck's death (a weekend which coincided with the
funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales). The author craves indulgence
for errors of fact, taste and interpretation that he is bound
to have made and hopes family, friends, colleagues and readers
of Hans will trouble to send in any necessary corrections. The
Obituary was first published in The McDougall NewsLetter
A version of it was published in the Oct.-Dec., 1997 issue of
'Right Now!' -- a magazine of which Hans had been a Patron in
his retirement; and a translation by Maria II Baguena (University
of Valencia) is to appear in the Spanish psychology journal 'Psychologemas.'
Other obituaries of Hans have been published and discussed in
The McDougall NewsLetter (http://www.crispian.demon.co.uk).
Nature carried an Obituary by Professor Jeffrey A. Gray on October 23, 1997 (p. 794).
Hans's recreations included walking, tennis, chess, detective
stories and squash. In retirement, together with his grandson,
Darren, Hans became a keen supporter of Manchester United Football
Club. His membership was known to the Club, which sometimes announced
over their loudspeakers his attendance at matches.
Joseph Wolpe, the Johannesburg psychiatrist (b. 1915) who had
been the other pioneer of behaviour therapy, also died late in
1997 (Guardian, 12 xii '97, Paul Salkovskis). It was in
1956, on his way to Stanford, that Wolpe had met Hans Eysenck
in London and exchanged views productively with him. A later attempt
to set Wolpe up in London in 1962 was not a success; but by 1965
Wolpe was running a behaviour therapy unit in Temple University,
Chris Brand, Edinburgh, September 1998
The sacked Edinburgh University Psychology academic, Chris Brand, is the author of The g Factor. This book about human intelligence was favourably reviewed in Nature (2 v 1996, p.33) as a 'spirited attack on Stephen Jay Gould and Steven Rose', and as a "radical libertarian" contribution to debates on education. Hans Eysenck wrote of it in the most generous terms for newspapers and for his journal Personality & Individual Differences in 1996. The book said that children are not largely the creatures (let alone the victims) of their environments -- except in so far as adults deny them serious choice; and that parents, after receiving advice about IQ, should be able to help children choose how fast they progress through school ( cf. 'fast track learning', advocated by Mr Tony Blair in February, 1996). Brand's non-PC book and 'Kids' Lib.' views quickly fell foul of the educational establishments of the UK and the USA.
For the latest news of differential psychology
and Brand's heresies, see:
The William McDougall NewsLetter and
Wiley & Edinburgh University versus Brand.
Last modified: 4 vii 1998