Encyclopedia of the History of Psychological Theories

2012 Edition
| Editors: Robert W. Rieber

Social Psychology

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0463-8_299

Social psychology is the scientific study of how people’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are influenced by the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others (Allport 1998). By this definition, scientific refers to the empirical method of investigation. The terms thoughts, feelings, and behaviors include all of the psychological variables that are measurable in a human being. The statement that others may be imagined or implied suggests that we are prone to social influence even when no other people are present, such as when watching television, or following internalized cultural norms.

Social psychology is an empirical science that attempts to answer a variety of questions about human behavior by testing hypotheses, both in the laboratory and in the field. Such approach to the field focuses on the individual, and attempts to explain how the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of individuals are influenced by other people.

A relatively recent field, social psychologyhas nonetheless...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access

References

  1. Adler, L. L., & Gielen, U. P. (Eds.). (2001). Cross-cultural topics in psychology (2nd ed.). Westport: Praeger. ISBN 978-0275969738.Google Scholar
  2. Allport, G. W. (1998). The historical background of social psychology. In G. Lindzey & E. Aronson (Eds.), The handbook of social psychology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0195213768.Google Scholar
  3. Ambady, N., & Rosenthal, R. (1992). Thin slices of expressive behavior as predictors of interpersonal consequences: A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 111, 256–274.Google Scholar
  4. Asch, S. E. (1955). Opinions and social pressure. Scientific American, 193, 31–35.Google Scholar
  5. Bandura, A., Ross, D., & Ross, S. A. (1961). Transmission of aggression through imitation of aggressive models. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 63, 575–582.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Batson, C. D. (1998). Altruism and pro-social behavior. In D. T. Gilbert, S. T. Fiske, & G. Lindzey (Eds.), The handbook of social psychology. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  7. Bem, D. (1970). Beliefs, attitudes, and human affairs. Belmont: Brooks/Cole.Google Scholar
  8. Borkenau, P., & Liebler, A. (1992). Trait inferences: Sources of validity at zero acquaintance. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 62, 645–647.Google Scholar
  9. Cialdini, R. B. (2000). Influence: Science and practice. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. ISBN 978-0321011473.Google Scholar
  10. Correll, J., Park, B., Judd, C. M., & Wittenbrink, B. (2002). The police officer’s dilemma: Using ethnicity to disambiguate potentially threatening individuals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83, 1314–1329.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Cote, J. E., & Levine, C. G. (2002). Identity formation, agency, and culture. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum. ISBN 978-0805837964.Google Scholar
  12. Cronbach, L. J. (1955). Processes affecting scores on “understanding of others” and “assumed similarity”. Psychological Bulletin, 52, 177–193.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Festinger, L. (1957). A theory of cognitive dissonance. Stanford: Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0804701310.Google Scholar
  14. Festinger, L., & Carlsmith, J. M. (1959). Cognitive consequences of forced compliance. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 58, 203–211.Google Scholar
  15. Funder, D. C. (1995). On the accuracy of personality judgment: A realistic approach. Psychological Review, 102, 652–670.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Gergen, K. J. (1973). Social psychology as history. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 26, 309–320.Google Scholar
  17. Gielen, U. P., & Adler, L. L. (Eds.). (1992). Psychology in international perspective: 50 years of the International Council of Psychologists. Lisse, The Netherlands: Swets & Zeitlinger.Google Scholar
  18. Gladwell, M. (2005). Blink: The power of thinking without thinking. Boston: Little, Brown. ISBN 978-0739455296.Google Scholar
  19. Guzewicz, T. D., & Takooshian, H. (1992). Development of a short-form scale of public attitudes toward homelessness. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 1(1), 67–79.Google Scholar
  20. Haney, C., Banks, W. C., & Zimbardo, P. G. (1973). Interpersonal dynamics in a simulated prison. International Journal of Criminology and Penology, 1, 69–97.Google Scholar
  21. Janis, I. L. (1972). Victims of groupthink. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 978-0395140444.Google Scholar
  22. Kelley, C. P., & Vichinstein, S. D. S. (2007). An introduction to DIRP theory: Disentangling interspecies reproduction patterns. Presented at the Annual Conference of the ISAA.Google Scholar
  23. Kenny, D. A. (1994). Interpersonal perception: A social relations analysis. New York: Guilford. ISBN 978-0898621143.Google Scholar
  24. Latane, B. (1981). The psychology of social impact. The American Psychologist, 36, 343–356.Google Scholar
  25. Lewin, K. (1951). Field theory in social science: Selected theoretical papers. New York: Harper & Row.Google Scholar
  26. Mesoudi, A. (2007). Using the methods of experimental social psychology to study cultural evolution. Journal of Social, Evolutionary and Cultural Psychology, 1(2), 35–58.Google Scholar
  27. Milgram, S. ([1975] 2004). Obedience to authority. New York: Harper & Bros. ISBN 978-0060737283.Google Scholar
  28. Perloff, R. M. (2007). The dynamics of persuasion. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum. ISBN 978-0805863604.Google Scholar
  29. Rieber, R. W., Takooshian, H., & Iglesias, H. (2002). The case of Sybil in the teaching of psychology. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 11(4), 355–360.Google Scholar
  30. Schaller, M., Simpson, J. A., & Kenrick, D. T. (2006). Evolution and social psychology (frontiers of social psychology). New York: Psychology Press. ISBN 1841694177.Google Scholar
  31. Sewell, W. H. (1989). Some reflections on the golden age of interdisciplinary social psychology. Annual Review of Sociology, 15, 1–17.Google Scholar
  32. Sherif, M. (1954). Experiments in group conflict. Scientific American, 195, 54–58.Google Scholar
  33. Sternberg, R. J. (1986). A triangular theory of love. Psychological Review, 93, 119–135.Google Scholar
  34. Tajfel, H., & Turner, J. C. (1986). The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In S. Worchel & W. G. Austin (Eds.), Psychology of intergroup relations. Chicago: Nelson-Hall. ISBN 978-0830410750.Google Scholar
  35. Takooshian, H. (2000). How Stanley Milgram taught about obedience and social influence. In T. Blass (Ed.), Obedience to authority (pp. 9–24). Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  36. Takooshian, H. (2005a). Reviewing 100 years of cross-national work on intelligence. PsycCRITIQUES, 50(12).Google Scholar
  37. Takooshian, H. (Ed.). (2005b). Social psychology of city life [Special issue]. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 14(1, 2), 1–77.Google Scholar
  38. Takooshian, H., & Verdi, W. M. (1995). Assessment of attitudes toward terrorism. In L. L. Adler & F. L. Denmark (Eds.), Violence and the prevention of violence. Westport: Praeger. ISBN 978-0275948733.Google Scholar
  39. Takooshian, H., Mrinal, N., & Mrinal, U. (2001). Research methods for studies in the field. In L. L. Adler & U. P. Gielen (Eds.), Cross-cultural topics in psychology (2nd ed.). Westport: Praeger. ISBN 978-0275969738.Google Scholar
  40. Triplett, N. (1898). The dynamogenic factors in pacemaking and competition. The American Journal of Psychology, 9, 507–533.Google Scholar
  41. Vazier, S., & Gosling, S. D. (2004). e-Perceptions: Personality impressions based on personal websites. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 87, 123–132.Google Scholar
  42. Watson, D. (1989). Strangers’ ratings of the five robust personality factors: Evidence of a surprising convergence with self-report. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57, 120–128.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Social Science DepartmentBorough of Manhattan Community College, The City University of New YorkNew YorkUSA