Social Psychology

1267 WordsMay 18, 20086 Pages
Social psychology tells us that daily behaviors and attitudes stem from the influences of social factors on the individual. In other words, all of our daily actions are fueled from social influences in our daily lives. Social psychology is a branch of psychology concerned with how social phenomena influence us and how people interact with others. There are some basic aspects of social behavior that play a large role in our actions and how we see ourselves. There have been many different theorists who have attempted to explain and understand this idea. After studying and learning about most the theories and ideas, I have come to the conclusion along with the author Kenneth Allan that George Herbert Mead is the only true social…show more content…
Allan includes a quote in his book about Marx saying, “Marx’s philosophy is one of protest imbued with faith in man, in his capacity to liberate himself, and to realize his potentialities” ((Fromm, 1961, p. vi) Allan pg 75). Max Weber, a German economist and sociologist is considered to be one of the most significant classical theorists because his methods that are still being implemented into modern sociological research. Weber believed that sociologists can learn to understand the actions of individuals and groups. Weber categorizes four types of social action: instrumental-rational, value-rational, affective, and traditional. Instrumental-rational action is the pursuit of goals where the goal and the means to obtaining the goal are calculated to identify the positive and negative aspects associated with the completion of the goal. Rational means justify a rational end in this type of action. Value-rational action is Weber’s second type of social action. This action is also characterized by the pursuit of a goal, but the goal is an end to itself. The goal may not be rational, but it is pursued by rational action using value judgment to do what is right in accordance to one’s moral code. The third type is affective action, which occurs instinctively without any prior thought process. This type describes natural reactions that people have based on human emotion. Weber’s fourth type is traditional action. This is the
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