ABSTRACT. Androcentrism is common and well-documented in undergraduate psychology textbooks. Many pioneering women are missing from the history of psychology, especially women from non-Western countries like Russia. The Russian physiologist Ivan P. Pavlov is a canonical figure in American psychology, yet historical accounts of his work have followed an androcentric great man narrative. This paper presents characterizations of Pavlov in introductory and history of psychology undergraduate textbooks, alongside general scholarship on Pavlov, and remedies omissions by documenting and describing the lives and work of women who worked in Pavlov’s labs. The primary reasons for these omissions are ideological and barriers to a global history of psychology.

Keywords: history; psychology; women; science; Ivan P. Pavlov; Russia; androcentrism; individualism

How to cite: Hill, Darryl B. (2019). “Androcentrism and the Great Man Narrative in Psychology Textbooks: The Case of Ivan Pavlov,” Journal of Research in Gender Studies 9(1): 9–37.

Received 28 May 2018 • Received in revised form 6 August 2018
Accepted 7 August 2018 • Available online 27 August 2018


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College of Staten Island and
The Graduate Center,
City University of New York

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