Hans and Sybil Eysenck
Professor Donald H. Saklofske
Greg Boyle (Bond University, Australia) and I (Don Saklofske, University of Saskatchewan, Canada) recently edited a 4 volume series entitled "The Psychology of Individual Differences" published in 2004 by Sage. We wished to create a dedication that reflected the key influences in our professional lives. Greg had worked closely with Ray Cattell over the years. I wanted very much to celebrate the huge contribution by Hans to the study of Individual Differences and the significant impact he and his work have had on both of us. We composed the following joint dedication that appeared at the front of Volume 1:
"This compendium is dedicated to the memory of two of the most highly respected and cited psychologists of the twentieth century - Professor Hans J. Eysenck and Professor Raymond B. Cattell. Both prodigious men made a profound and lasting contribution to the psychology of individual differences. Each was an exemplary scientist, humanitarian and mentor, qualities that both editors respect and aspire to."
Some years ago I was asked by V.S. Ramachandran who was editing a comprehensive volume titled “The Encyclopedia of Human Behavior” to write a chapter on “Extraversion”. After agreeing and spending some time on this, it began to appear to me as if my draft was more of a summary, if not a research biography, of Professor Eysenck’s many studies, articles and books on the topic. I wrote to Hans, asking if he would be willing to co-author the chapter, lest I be seen as plagiarizing his seminal writings on this major personality dimension. I even took the liberty of suggesting an outline and indicating the sections he might like to write.
His response was immediate… “yes”. Thinking we had more than a month to write this paper, I was about to write Hans to thank him for agreeing and proposing some timelines, when his sections arrived and as we all know, they were rich in detail and flawlessly written. Not to be seen to be the weak link, I worked day and night for almost 2 weeks on my sections, combined and edited the chapter, and forwarded it to Hans for review.
His reply was again immediate. He said the paper was ready for publication but for one change…that the authorship be altered so that I would be first author… and this was not open for discussion or change!!
More recently I was asked to update the chapter for the 2012 edition. I invited Sybil, along with two colleagues that Hans had a close relationship with, Bob Stelmack and Bill Revelle to join in revising the chapter. While I was tempted to change the authorship order, I remembered his early position that it was not open for change! Thus the chapter appears as D.H. Saklofske, H. J. Eysenck, S.G.B Eysenck, R.M. Stelmack, and W. Revelle.
Amongst the many memories we all have of Hans, this example of his generosity and support for colleagues will always stand out for me … and is something I try to emulate, especially with my students and junior colleagues. Of course, he would then thrash me unmercifully on the tennis court each time we played!!!