The trilogy of mind: Cognition, affection, and conation



The tripartite classification of mental activities into cognition, affection, and conation originated in the German faculty psychology of the eighteenth century, but was adopted by the association psychologists of the nineteenth century of Scotland, England, and America. Its influence extended into the twentieth century through the writings of William McDougall. It is proposed that the classificatory scheme is still useful in the assessment of contemporary emphases in psychology, such as the present prominence of cognitive psychology to the relative neglect of affection and conation.