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Stanley Schachter was born on April 15, 1922, to Nathan and Anna Schachter in Flushing, New York. He proposed the two factor theory of emotion. He said emotions have two ingredients: physiological arousal and a cognitive label. A person's experience of an emotion stems from the mental awareness of the body's physical arousal.

Biographical backgroundEdit

Schachter was born to Nathan and Anna Schachter in Flushing, New York. His parents were both Romanian Jews, his father from Vasilau a small village in Bukovina and his mother from Radauti.[1].

Schachter died on June 7, 1997 at his home in East Hampton New York. He was survived by his wife, the former Sophia Duckworth. Elijah, their only son, was born in 1969.


He initially studied Art history at Yale University and then took his Masters in Psychology, there where he was influenced by Clark Hull.


In 1946 Schacter went to MIT to work with the German social psychologist Kurt Lewin, in his Research Center for Group Dynamics, studying social issues. Lewin died in 1947, and the research center moved to the University of Michigan, where it became a part of the Institute for Social Research. And this was where Schacter gained his Ph.D. 1949. Schachter's dissertation supervisor was Leon Festinger and they with Henry Riecken, wrote a book entitled When Prophecy Fails (1956), describing what happened to a millenial groups after their predicted date for the end of the world had passed

He joined the Columbia University (New York, N.Y.) faculty as professor of psychology in 1961. He was named Robert Johnston Niven Professor of Social Psychology in 1966 and retired in 1992 with an emeritus designation.


Stanley Schachter had a broad curiosity about social behavior. During his career he studied the misattribution of arousal, the causes of overeating and obesity, the physiological basis for nicotine addiction, and the origins of miserliness. In each domain Schachter provided the field with creative, thought-provoking experiments. He won the AAAS Prize for Behavioral Science Research in 1959 .[2]

Schachter's papers are archived at the Bentley Historical Library of the University of Michigan.

See alsoEdit



Book chaptersEdit

  • Schachter,S (1964) The interaction of cognitive and physiological determinants of emotional state. In Advances in Experimental Social Psychology, ed. L. *Berkowitz, pp. 49-79. New York: Academic Press.
  • Schachter,S & Latane, B (1964) . Crime, cognition and the autonomic nervous system. In Nebraska Symposium on Motivation, ed. D. Levine, pp. 221-73. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.
  • Schachter,S (1980). Nonpsychological explanations of behavior. In Retrospective on Social Psychology, ed. L. Festinger, pp. 131-57. New York: Oxford University Press.


  • Schachter,S (1951) Deviation, rejection and communication. J. Abnorm. Soc. Psychol. 46:190-207.
  • Schachter,S (1962) With J. Singer. Cognitive, social and physiological determinants of emotional state. Psychol. Rev. 69:379-99.
  • Schachter,S (1963) Birth order, eminence and higher education. Am. Sociol. Rev. 28:757-68.
  • Schachter,S (1968). Obesity and eating. Science 161:751-56.
  • Schachter,S (1971). Some extraordinary facts about obese humans and rats. Am. Psychol. 26:129-44.
  • Schachter,S (1977). Nicotine regulation in heavy and light smokers. J. Exp. Psychol. 106:5-12.
  • Schachter,S (1978). Pharmacological and psychological determinants of cigarette smoking. Ann. Intern. Med. 88:104-14.
  • Schachter,S (1982). Recidivism and self-cure of smoking and obesity. Am. Psychol. 37:436-44.
  • Schachter,S (1991) With N. J. S. Christenfeld, B. Ravina, and F. R. Bilous. Speech disfluency and the structure of knowledge. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 60:362-67.

Biographies, Autobiographies and FestschriftEdit

  • Grunberg, N. E. Nisbett, R. E., Rodin, J., and Singer, J. E. (1987). A Distinctive Approach to Psychological Research: The Influence of Stanley
  • Schachter,S (1989) Stanley Schachter. In A History of Psychology in Autobiography, ed. G. Lindzey. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Schachter. Hillsdale, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates,

External linksEdit

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