• Ernest Furchtgott
Part of the The Springer Series in Adult Development and Aging book series (SSAD)


In Chapter 1, in the definitions of motivation, we introduced the concept of balance or homeostasis. Again, in Chapter 2, on the biological foundations, and in Chapter 7, it was necessary to integrate motivation with homeostasis or equilibrium. There have been different views on the usage of the terms homeostasis and equilibrium. Cofer and Appley (1964, pp. 302–366) and Appley (1991) review the history of the controversy, primarily in reference to psychology. In general, physiologists, following Cannon (1915), tend to use the term homeostasis, while most psychologists, including Appley (1991), express a preference for the more “dynamic” term equilibrium, which may be applicable to both closed and open systems. Equilibrium does not imply that the organism seeks to return to a prior steady state, and it can therefore be applied to such psychological concepts as expectancy or achievement Similarly, the biologist Yates (Yates & Benton, 1995) introduced the term homeodynamics, since organisms are open systems and equilibrium denotes stillness. For our purposes, the distinction between terms is not too important. Motivation may be defined as the organism’s attempt to achieve equilibrium or homeodynamics.


Social Support Pulse Wave Velocity Reaction Time Task Personal Control Daily Hassle 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ernest Furchtgott
    • 1
  1. 1.Late of the University of South CarolinaColumbiaUSA

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