Term of Art: Tabula Rasa

“Tabula Rasa: Also known as the blank-slate or white-paper thesis, a name for the radically empiricist view of the mind and knowledge which inspired so-called associationism in psychology. According to John Locke, the contents of the mind are written on it by experience as if it were white paper, a view comparable with modern behaviorist theories which try to account for mental processes as a product of external stimulus and behavioral response.”

Excerpted from: Marshall, Gordon, ed. Oxford Dictionary of Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.

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