The American psychologist and philosopher William James drew inspiration from British evolutionary theory, neurology, psychiatry, psychology and philosophy. Trained in anatomy, physiology and medicine, he developed a physiological psychology that offered acute analyses of consciousness and of the relations between mind and brain, habit and thought, cognition and emotion and other aspects of psychology. One of his insights, regarding the relation between attention and will, was based upon his own experience of panic anxiety, which was resolved through his reading of several British authors. The story of his psychiatric experience, practical response and later theoretical conclusion offers a potential contribution to contemporary therapeutic practice.
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