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2S06 Lecture 34.docx

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McMaster University
David Young

Fox 1 Lecture 36 SOCIOL 2S06 Monday February 24, 2014  Mead cont. E) Academic Employment 1. The University of Michigan • In 1891 Mead ended his graduate studies early to accept a position as a lecturer at the University of Michigan (teaching philosophy and psychology) and met John Dewey • John Dewey was a very well known/established professor in the department of philosophy at the University of Michigan • They were both interested in teaching and in helping people • Mead and Dewey became life-long friends • In 1893- Dewey received an offer to become the chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Chicago and accepted on the condition that he could hire Mead • Dewey managed to hire Mead and also get him a promotion from lecturer to assistant professor (who would normally have a PhD, but Mead did not) 2. The University of Chicago • In 1894 Mead moved to the University of Chicago and remained there for many years I) Difficulty Writing • He was a perfectionist and was never satisfied with what he was writing • However he managed to publish a number of scholarly articles- but found it difficult to do so • He never published a book during his academic career II) Exceptional Teaching • He was particularly known for teaching a course on Social Psychology (taught it from 1900 onward) in the department of Philosophy • A number of sociology graduates took this course- and Mead had a huge impact on these sociology students • One of the reasons why students liked Mead so much was because he was very organized and had stimulating ideas • Mead was not known for having a very strong presentation style (because he was so quiet and shy)- often he discouraged questions III) Community Service • He was able to find a way to combine his academic scholarship and community service through theory and practice • Theory was incorporated in his academic scholarship o He wrote a number of educational articles dealing with pedagogy o He edited a journal for elementary school teachers • Community Service incorporated in his practice o He worked on local educational communities o He helped at a school for hearing/sight-impaired children F) Later Years • In 1902 he was promoted from assistant professor to associate professor • In 1907 he was promoted to full professor • In 1930 he became chair of the Department of Philosophy • In 1931 he decided to leave the University of Chicago and go to Columbia University • There was a conflict between the Department of Philosophy and the University president- Mead felt so strongly about his position that he decided (in the interest of his conscious) that he had to resign • Mead had not even had time to take on his position before he became ill • In 1931 he died of heart failure at the age of 68 G) Impact on Sociology • A book was published in his name three years after his death- in 1934 • The book was called “Mind, Self & Society” • The graduate sociology students (who had been in his class) put together the lecture notes they had from in his class and created this book
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