Martin Gold's A New Outline of Social Psychology PDF

By Martin Gold

ISBN-10: 1557984085

ISBN-13: 9781557984081

Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Presentation of the author's version of social psychology which makes a speciality of the reciprocal relatives among the individual and the social atmosphere.

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Example text

I do not mean to limit the definition of the “social” environment to the immediate presence of humans. One of the recurring points of difference among definers of social psychology is whether the discipline is concerned only with face-to-face interaction or whether it encompasses “the imagined or implied presence of others” (G. Allport, 1954, p. 5). Even more broadly, should it include symbols in its purview? I take the widest view. One more vignette: A small boy relieves the boredom of a rainy Saturday afternoon by exploring the bookshelf of his teenaged sister.

The individual must recognize the other’s humanity. Another angle to this, from a different perspective: Some attributions of humanity are fanciful, made to creatures that do not have human mental capacities. Some people regard their pets as so nearly human that they interact with them as though they were. They are convinced, or at least act as though they were, that their cats or dogs have high-level human intelligence, make human interpretations of situations, and have human motives. For example, Friedman, Katcher, Lynch, and Thomas (1979)reported that having a pet can help patients survive a heart attack because pets provide emotional support as human companions do.

These affinities focus on the functional essentials of the phenomena in their respective systems and thereby mark the terms to be translated from one conceptual level to the other. J. G. Miller’s work on “living systems” is rich in such conceptual analyses. This particular conceptualization seems too broad for social psychology, however, because it rests too heavily on assumptions of a limited quantity, energy, whereas what is essential to “social” entities is that they do commerce with a quantity that is undiminished when it is dissipated, namely, information.

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A New Outline of Social Psychology by Martin Gold

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