Social Psychology

1921 Words8 Pages
Social psychology is a young science, barely a century old (Myers, 2010). Yet already its scientific explorations have shed light on love and hate, conformity and independence - social behaviors that we encounter each day (Myers, 2010). Social psychology is the scientific study of how people think about, influence, and relate to one another. (Myers, 2010). As we mature in life, our social world molds us as we interact in social thinking, social influences, and social relations. Social psychology had the potential to illuminate our lives, making it visible to the subtle influences that guide our thinking and acting. (Myers, 2010). Social psychology has open many avenues for psychologist of the present to understand how our everyday lives are affected by self-perception, social factor, and culture and gender influence. Social psychology dates back as late as the 1800s. It wasn't until after World War II that research on social psychology began in earnest (Cherry, 2005). The horrors of the Holocaust led researchers to study the effects of social influence, conformity and obedience (Cherry, 2005). In 1895 Gustave Le Bon presented a systematic theory that the behavior of crowds was based on emotion rather than intellect (Ferguson, 2004). Le Bon recognized that his work revealed great dangers to society and he warned that if the masses were to gain control, human society would Social Psychology 3 revert to barbarism (Ferguson, 2004). In this sense, Le Bon's work was an incomplete analysis of crowd dynamics, while at the same time it did open new avenues of understanding human behavior (Ferguson, 2004). Gustave Le Bon incomplete theory of crowd dynamics helped social psychologist Muzafer Sherif with his mos... ... middle of paper ... ..., and Decision Framing. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol 50 (3), 533-549. Retrieved from http://psycnet.apa.org. Cherry, Kendra. (2005). Introduction to Social Psychology: Basic Concepts in Social Psychology. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/socialpsychology/a/socpsycbasics.htm. Cherry, Kendra. (2005). Research Areas in Social Psychology. Retrieved from http://psychology.about.com/od/socialpsychology/p/socialresearch.htm Ferguson, Tamare. (2004). Social Pressure: How Our Concern For Others Judgments Affect Our Actions. Retrieved from http://www.usu.edu/psycho101/lectures/chp14socinflu/socinflu.html. Myers, David G. (2010). Social Psychology (10th ed). Boston: McGraw-Hill. Papalia, D.E.; Old, Wendkos, S. Feldman, Duskin, R. (2005). A Child's World: Infancy Through Adolescence (11th ed). New York: McGraw-Hill
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