A central issue in the history of Chinese psychology is whether the history of ancient psychological thought and the development of modern Chinese psychology, with its Western origins, are disconnected intellectual endeavors. This chapter offers a brief account of change and continuity in Chinese psychology from about 550 bc to 1980. It highlights some ancient thinkers and observers, and their accomplishments. It also introduces the landmarks and pioneers of modern Chinese psychology in various sociopolitical contexts. In this account, the central issue presents itself as having been intertwined and integrated over time with Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism, yīn yáng wᅭxíng theory, heart-central theory, and later dialectical materialism in the Chinese pursuit of a unified dialectical explanation of human behaviors.

Publication Title

The Oxford Handbook of the History of Psychology Global Perspectives