Reflections on 100 Years of Experimental Social Psychology

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In the Spring of 1997, a remarkable group of social psychologists came together at Yosemite National Park to reflect upon the field which they have been so instrumental in creating. This edited collection brings together the reflections of the nine scholars who spoke at the Yosemite conference that day and marks the 100th anniversary of Tripplet’s seminal study of bicycle racers—an experiment which has often been cited as the beginning of modern experimental social psychology. The contributors: Elliot Aronson, Leonard Berkowitz, Morton Deutsch, Harold Gerard, Harold Kelley, Albert Pepitone, Bertram Raven, Robert Zajonc, and Philip Zimbardo have not only observed the development of this burgeoning discipline, collectively, they have played an essential role in crafting its young legacy.The book begins with personal histories of the researchers. Being that these personal histories are, in fact, closely connected to the most significant people, laboratories and conceptual trends of the field, these reminiscences are much more than simply histories of the course of particular individuals’ lives; they are at the same time histories of the discipline itself. Subsequent chapters turn to the field’s historical roots: its origins, course of theories, methods, and approaches. But all chapters share a common theme: an examination of the ways that the lives and experiences of social psychology’s most prominent living scholars have helped to shape the history of the field itself.

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Editorial Reviews

Contains ten essays in which some of the most remarkable social psychologists of the century reflect on the field which they were instrumental in creating. Drawn from a conference held at Yosemite National Park in 1997, some of these essays provide personal histories of the researchers, with reminiscences of the people and institutions involved, while others focus on critical analysis of the discipline. Contributors include Morton Deutsch, Harold Kelley, Harold Gerard, Bertram Raven, Philip Zimbardo, Leonard Berkowitz, Elliot Aronson, Albert Pepitone, and Robert Zajonc. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813390864
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 6/11/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 264
  • Lexile: 1390L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Aroldo Rodrigues is professor of psychology at California State University, Fresno. Robert V. Levine professor and chair of psychology at California State University, Fresno.

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Table of Contents

1 A Personal Perspective on the Development of Social Psychology in the Twentieth Century 1
2 Fifty Years in Social Psychology: Some Reflections on the Individual-Group Problem 35
3 A Social Psychologist Examines His Past and Looks to the Future 47
4 Adventures in Experimental Social Psychology: Roots, Branches, and Sticky New Leaves 82
5 Reflections on Interpersonal Influence and Social Power in Experimental Social Psychology 114
6 Experimental Social Psychology: Behaviorism with Minds and Matters 135
7 On the Changes in U.S. Social Psychology: Some Speculations 158
8 Historical Sketches and Critical Commentary About Social Psychology in the Golden Age 170
9 One Hundred Years of Rationality Assumptions in Social Psychology 200
10 Afterword: Reflecting on Reflections 215
About the Editors and Contributors 231
Index 237
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