Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

Experimental Psychology: A Manual of Laboratory Practice, Vol. II: Quantitative Experiments, part 2: Instructor's Manual
Titchener, Edward B.
4. Criticism 
bear in mind that, while Müller is arguing seriously, he is also arguing 
hypothetically. If there is an RL in Fechner’s sense, a simple sensing of 
a least sensation, then this RL is something radically different from the 
DL. More than this the argument does not say. 
The Limens in the I. S,—We return to Fechner’s exposition in the I. 
S. Here Fechner emphasises the vital importance of an inner limen for 
inner psychophysics, and discusses certain physiological investigations 
that seem to bear upon the point.1 2 He then declares the physiological 
explanation of the RL to be inadequate, if only for the reason that it is 
inadequate to the related DL? Two physiological interpretations of the 
DL are proposed, and found wanting.3 4 Quite apart from the DL, how¬ 
ever, there are facts of attention that lead directly to the assumption of 
an inner RL? Fechner next passes on to deal with the RL in the light 
of his negative sensation values,5 and finally comes to the ML. The R 
and E that lie below the ML modify consciousness, at the expense (so to 
say) of their own individuality : “sie gehen unbewusst in einem allge¬ 
meinem Bewusstseinsphänomen auf.’’6 “ Durch die Thatsache der 
Mischungsschwelle wird der Schwellenbegriff überhaupt . . . nicht auf¬ 
gehoben, sondern nur verallgemeinert."7 Hefe is, perhaps, an improve¬ 
ment in detail, but so systematic advance upon the Elemente.8 
The DL in Müller's Review.—Müller’s review of the I. S. is concerned 
with three principal points : the metric methods and the range of 
validity of Weber’s Law ; the derivation of the metric formula from 
Weber's Law ; and the interpretation of the metric formula. To Fech- 
ner's argument that what holds of the DL must also hold of the RL, 
Müller replies as follows, (i) A physiological explanation of the RL, 
implying a proportionality of S and E, implies absolutely nothing as 
regards the noticeableness of S'-differences. In the former case we are 
talking of the dependence of S upon psychophysical activity ; in the 
latter, of the relation of the difference sensation to the ^-difference. 
Where is the connection ?9 (2) If, however, Fechner’s argument contains 
a challenge to the physiological interpretation : ‘ you must offer some 
sort of psychophysical representation of the difference sensation,—and 
then you must make the 5 proportional to the E,—and then you run 
1 I. S., 70 ff. Cf, G. E. Müller, Gott. gel. Anz., 1878, 819 ff. 
2 Ibid., 83 ff. 
3 Ibid., 84. An explanation in terms of the ML is dismissed, 106. 
4 Ibid., 85 ff. 5 Ibid., 88 ff. 6 Ibid., 105 f. ; R., 258. 
7 Ibid., 106. Fechner has forgotten the corresponding passage in El., i., 331 ; 
cf. R., 179. 
8 Pp. 102 f., 104 f. mark, in Fechner’s opinion, an advance in clearness of ex¬ 
9 Göttingische gel. Anzeigen, 26 Juni 1878, 826.


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