From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Sun, 04 Nov 2001 11:46:16 -0500 Fwd Date: Sun, 04 Nov 2001 11:46:16 -0500 Subject: Obituary - Ernest R. Hilgard http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/03/obituaries/03HILG.html?ex=1005768330&ei=1&en=c November 3, 2001 Ernest R. Hilgard, Leader in Study of Hypnosis, Dies at 97 By WOLFGANG SAXON Dr. Ernest R. Hilgard, a highly acclaimed experimental psychologist and a pioneer in the scientific study of hypnosis, died on Oct. 22 in Palo Alto, Calif., where he was a professor emeritus at Stanford University. He was 97. Dr. Hilgard was also known as a primary author of a classic psychology text, "Introduction to Psychology," widely familiar to college students in entry level courses. First published in 1953, the book was issued in a 13th edition two years ago. An expert in learning and memory, Dr. Hilgard began his career studying classical conditioning in the Pavlovian tradition. But it was his work on hypnosis that brought him to national prominence. "Hypnosis had been off to the side of mainstream psychology," said Dr. Gordon H. Bower, a professor of psychology at Stanford. Dr. Hilgard "moved into it and tried to put it on a more scientific basis," Dr. Bower said. With another researcher, Dr. Andre Weitzenhoffer, Dr. Hilgard developed a scale to measure a person's susceptibility to hypnotic induction, allowing scientists to compare the technique's effectiveness in different studies. He was also among the first to study the use of hypnosis to control pain. Dr. Hilgard's time at Stanford, which began in 1933, coincided with "the big growth spurt" in the psychology department's national reputation, Dr. Bower said. He credited Dr. Hilgard with bringing to the university many of the field's brightest scholars, including Dr. Leon Festinger and Dr. Eleanor Maccoby. Adept at reviewing and synthesizing many different theoretical perspectives, Dr. Hilgard was known for his catholic and objective approach to the field. In 1940, he published "Theories of Learning" in collaboration with Dr. Donald G. Marquis. Its fifth edition, for which Dr. Bower was a collaborator, remains in print. Dr. Hilgard's introductory text was translated into several languages and continues widely in use, although his name eventually dropped behind those of his younger co-authors. It branched into various editions for teacher and students, and the latest, with Rita L. Atkinson as the lead author, was issued by Harcourt in 1999. Dr. Hilgard's wife, Dr. Josephine Rohrs Hilgard, a psychiatrist, was also a collaborator, particularly in his work with hypnotism. Together they wrote "Hypnosis in the Relief of Pain," published in 1983 with a revised edition in 1994. Also in print, at Harcourt, is his "The Experience of Hypnosis" (1968). Ernest Ropiequet Hilgard, who was known as Jack, was born in Belleville, Ill., and graduated from the University of Illinois in 1924. He received his Ph.D. at Yale in 1930. He took emeritus status at Stanford in 1969. In 1957, he and his wife founded the Laboratory of Hypnosis Research at Stanford, which he directed until 1979. The purpose was to shore up the scientific underpinnings of hypnotism. In medical practice, the phenomenon was introduced by Dr. Franz Anton Mesmer (1734-1815), a Viennese forerunner of modern psychotherapy and analysis. Spurned by Freud and most practitioners, it remained largely confined to vaudeville and the drawing room until Dr. Hilgard's generation. While Dr. Hilgard's scale of susceptibility gave scientists a standard tool for studying hypnotism, his neodissociation theory of 1977 helped to explain it. Dr. Hilgard proposed that several distinct states of consciousness can be present during hypnosis. Thus, certain actions may become dissociated from the conscious mind. In recent years, hypnosis has been used to manage otherwise intractable pain or fear of pain in the dentist's chair, and as an aide in psychotherapy. It has also been used in criminal investigations to restore lapsed memories. Dr. Hilgard was a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society. He was a past president of the American Psychological Association. Dr. Hilgard's wife, whom he met at Yale, died in 1989, after 58 years of marriage. He is survived by a son, Henry R., of Santa Cruz, Calif.; a daughter, Elizabeth H. Jecker of San Luis Obispo, Calif; five grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. In awarding him its Gold Medal in 1978, the American Psychological Foundation singled him out for having made "scientific contributions to nearly every field of psychology, most notably in learning and states of consciousness."
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