chapter  43
24 Pages

Experiments on Motivation: Studies Combining Psychological, Physiological, and Pharmacological Techniques

WithNeal E. Miller

The importance of motivation in both normal and abnormal behavior is generally recognized. This chapter describes experiments from laboratory in which a combination of behavioral, physiological, and pharmacological techniques is used to study motivation. The experiments deal with hunger, thirst, sex, aggression, and a centrally aroused pain-fear-like response. These drives are induced or reduced in a variety of unusual ways, such as by direct electrical or chemical stimulation of the brain. Most studies of hunger have used but a single technique, measuring the amount of food consumed. If food injected directly into the stomach produces a prompt reduction in the strength of hunger, the drive-reduction hypothesis of reinforcement demands that such injection should serve as a reward to produce learning. But since food taken normally by mouth produces a greater reduction, it should serve as a stronger reward.