Learned helplessness at fifty: Insights from neuroscience.

  title={Learned helplessness at fifty: Insights from neuroscience.},
  author={Steven F. Maier and Martin E. P. Seligman},
  journal={Psychological review},
  volume={123 4},
Learned helplessness, the failure to escape shock induced by uncontrollable aversive events, was discovered half a century ago. Seligman and Maier (1967) theorized that animals learned that outcomes were independent of their responses-that nothing they did mattered-and that this learning undermined trying to escape. The mechanism of learned helplessness is now very well-charted biologically, and the original theory got it backward. Passivity in response to shock is not learned. It is the… CONTINUE READING