This page is concerned with fiction writings in which a general theme
of the writing reflects an important concept in psychology. These fiction
writings that convey important concepts in psychology can be labeled
psychology fiction. Moreover, some of the fiction writings that are
books could be labeled psychology fiction books or psychology novels.
Possible Functions of Psychology Fiction
There may be a number of possible functions of presenting important
concepts in psychology in fiction. Research may be needed to address
the validity of these ideas.
1. The concreteness and detail of a story might make it easier to
comprehend a concept. The art of communication may reflect
connecting the abstract with the concrete. Ideas or concepts may
become clearer when they are linked to specific information.
2. A story may provide a context for ideas, which might make a concept
seem more relevant or important. A story may help us to discern
situations in which a concept may apply. We need to have a clear idea
about how a concept may be beneficial and how it might explain
important phenomenon. A story may be helpful in making it clearer how
the concept is beneficial or how it can explain important phenomenon.
3. A story may help to make ideas more cogent. Providing
concreteness, detail, and context may make some concepts seem more
convincing and valid.
Psychology Fiction Books
Some of the fiction books that I would view as reflecting important
concepts in psychology include Walden Two by B. F. Skinner, Nineteen
Eighty-Four by George Orwell, and Brave New World by Aldous
In Skinner's novel, Walden Two, there is a description of a community
that can be viewed as utopian. The utopian novel involves a description
of the good life. The leaders of the Walden Two community would
promote acceptable behavior by use of positive reinforcement. Positive
reinforcement occurs when the likelihood of a certain behavior increases
as a result of the presentation of something pleasant after the behavior.
In Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, a government influences and restricts
the thoughts that people have partly by reducing the words that they
have in their vocabulary. This is related to the linguistic relativity
hypothesis. The linguistic relativity hypothesis suggest that language
determines what we think. In this view, what words that we have in our
vocabulary will determine what thoughts we may have.
Brave New World
Brave New World can be described as a dystopian novel involving
indoctrination, conditioning, and a caste society. In the second chapter
of Brave New World, there is a description of a form of conditioning that
appears to be classical conditioning. Classical conditioning is a type of
conditioning in which something (conditioned stimulus) that had not
previously produced a particular response becomes associated with
something (unconditioned stimulus) that produces the response. As a
result, the conditioned stimulus will elicit the response that the
unconditioned stimulus produces. In Chapter 2 of Brave New World, the
classical conditioning results in an unpleasant reaction to books and
flowers because of the association with electric shock and loud noise.