Lecture 7 - History of Social Psychology Lecture
• The "origin myth" started with the first article: "the dynamogenic factors in pacemaking and
• Kurt Danziger was first person to study the history of social psychology. He states
"Methodology is not ontologically neutral." Kurt also stated that that you need to look for
more than one study to start a new field.
Studying the social but empirically, using experiments in laboratories. There was a desire for a
greater emphasis on empirical research (particularly in experimental research) compared to
other social sciences.
• A vision of the social world that is amenable to studying it at the individual level using
• What changed with social psychology: "...imagined, implied presence of others" instead of
typical lab tests on rats based on treats and punishment.
• We can carry (cognitive) representation of individuals and of groups of individuals in our
head. They can influence us even if they are not there.
Floyd Allport was the visionary who focused in the individual (on his or her subjective
experience of the social world). This visionary departs from older social sciences like political
structures, international markets not amendable to experiments.
• Social psychologists assume that your perception of the social world drives you. This view fits
culturally with North American individualistic view of the individual.
• Attitudes are the most studied concept in social psychology. Positive or negative evaluation
of persons, objects or events.
• For Gordon Allport, attitudes are a matter of the person (state of affaire within the person).
• Properties of attitudes are strictly individual attributes.
Implies individuals are separate entity not the parts of a social collectivity.
• Since attitude is acquired, thus it can be modified and is you