This course offers an overview of social psychology– the scientific study of how people influence one another’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Topics covered include: the self; perception of individuals and groups; attitude change and attitude-behavior relations; social influence and persuasion; group processes, including conformity and leadership; attraction to others including friends and romantic partners; intergroup relationships including discrimination, prejudice and stereotypes; gender roles including their change over time; and altruism and aggression. Consideration will be given to the issue of how a number of these topics are influenced by the cultural context. In addition, attention will also be paid to the ways in which social psychologists commonly carry out their research, including experimental methods and survey research.
Field ClassCountry: India
Date: October 30, 2017
During this field class, students will meet with individuals at the Mahatma Gandhi Trust to discuss Gandhian thought and activism, the history of class and caste in India, and Martin Luther King Jr’s use of Gandhian methods to address race and class in the U.S. and around the world. Students will also visit a Dalit community, whose members are accorded the lowest status in Indian society, and learn how they live today and seek to resist the caste system.
1. Learn about caste in India.
2. Analyze the strengths and weaknesses of affirmative action and other strategies for redressing earlier socially sanctioned inequality.
3. Compare the thought of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King.