Exhibition “X-Rays of The Soul: Rorschach & The Projective Test”

X-Rays of The Soul: Rorschach & The Projective Test

Exhibition at the Harvard Science Center

Until 30 June 2012

Beginning in 1921 with the Rorschach Inkblot Test and gaining momentum with the Thematic Apperception Test in 1935, a new breed of psychological probe aimed to reach previously inaccessible layers and levels of the unconscious self: the projective test.

Likened to X-rays of the inner life, these instruments promised to capture what no other tool could access – the secret self. The story of the triumphal rise as well as the periodic setbacks of the projective test movement is evidence of the heady confidence of the Twentieth Century human sciences to be able to extract and access the most human parts of human beings –scientifically.

From the genesis of the tests in passionate personal relationships to the recent Wikipedia furor over posting the Rorschach images, the exhibit seeks to capture this neglected history’s equally utopian and dystopian elements.

Special Exhibitions Gallery, Department of History of Science, Harvard Science Center 251

Official opening on Friday 30 March 2012 from 5-7pm, hosted by Professors Peter Galison and Janet Browne

For more information, click here.

  1. Henry A. Murray and Christiana Morgan originated the TAT, supposedly an idea gleaned from a colleague. It was a deceptive test in that the client was not told of its real purpose, which resemble Catholic confessionals than psychiatry or psychoanalysis.. For more on Murray’s dubious ethics, see http://clarespark.com/2011/03/27/progressive-mind-managers-ca-1941-42/. This lays out the strategies devised by Murray and his colleague at Harvard, Gordon Allport. My website is filled with these nuggets.

  2. I compiled a larger index for my work on Henry Murray, including the TAT. See http://clarespark.com/2012/03/26/henry-a-murray-and-the-tat/. Very little of what I found is published in Forrest G. Robinson’s authorized biography. As of 1995, the Murray Papers at Harvard U. Archives were closed, but they may be available to approved applicants today.

    • Alexandra Bacopoulos-Viau
    • April 4th, 2012
  1. June 5th, 2012
    Trackback from : How I Write | merlinspielen

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