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Keith E Rice's Integrated SocioPsychology Blog & Pages

Aligning, integrating and applying the behavioural sciences

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Online Censorship: where do we draw the Line?

by Carla White  I am delighted to publish this ‘guest blog’ by Carla White. Carla is an experienced writer and blogger who describes herself as “passionate about looking deeper into the world around us”. She writes ‘alternative’ news posts for numerous websites and also has experience running and maintaining websites. She says: “You can always find me at my laptop, with a cup of coffee!” You can email Carla to find out more about her work. Social conditioning has a considerable effect on crime. It was Émile Durkheim who first noted the existence of a values consensus when, in 1893, he wrote about a collective consciousness that defines societal norms and makes certain acts unthinkable to conforming citizens. This idea is one regularly used by governments as justification for censorship. By reiterating the taboo nature of certain topics, they hope to reduce mass indulgence in these things. Admittedly, this tactic has seen success. Child pornography, bestiality and cold-blooded murder are just some examples of topics that incite shock and terror in the hearts of most. However, whenever information is restricted on a national scale, an ethical question is raised. At what point does information control become an active manipulation of the collective conscience? A brief… Read More

The Biological Impetus to Attachment

 Updated: 31 March 2017 The largely complementary attachment theories of John Bowlby (1969) and Rudolph Schaffer (Rudolph Schaffer & Peggy Emerson, 1964; Schaffer, 1996) mostly focus on the conscious cognitive and affective aspects of the formation of an attachment bond between the child and its primary caregiver (usually the mother), being in broad agreement that this is usually in place by the time the child is 6-7 months old. However, Bowlby (1958) was convinced that there existed an innate drive to attachment between child and mother and that this was adaptive. For evidence from an Evolutionary perspective, Bowlby was initially dependent on animal studies of imprinting such as those of Konrad Lorenz (1935). Lorenz had shown that animals such as geese and ducks imprint on the first thing they see after breaking the egg and treat it as their ‘mother’. (Famously, Lorenz got greylag goslings to imprint on his wellington boots, after which they would follow him around when wearing them!) Lorenz proposed that imprintability is genetically switched on and then switched off, effectively anticipating the development of Epigenetics. From this, Stephen Lea (1984) proposed that instinct gives the gosling chicks the concept or template of the mother but the environment has to supply… Read More

The 7th Code

by Don Beck October 2006 Spiral Dynamics co-developer Don Beck is occasionally prone to post what effectively amount to teach-ins or mini-lectures on the Spiral Dynamics e-lists. This is an extract from one such posting in 2000. You can e-mail Don or visit the Spiral Dynamics Integral website to find out more about his work. Clearly, the contours of YELLOW (G-T/Systemic/Authentic) have not been etched in tin much less set in concrete. But, with all due respect to other developmental models, this highlights the uniqueness of the Gravesian/SDi perspective in that it does address, with great specificity, how each new vMEMETIC code actually appears; what are the life conditions that spark and drive it; and how life problems ‘G’ will awaken the capacities (T) to deal with new realities, new challenges and new threats as well. What provides the totem pole for development is, in our view, the accumulation of the vMEMETIC codes or schemes (with the multiple expressions of content or themes) that form societal stacks that maintain all of the awakened codes and set the stage for new ones in the future. This is what we call The Double Helix; namely the interaction between life conditions experienced and the… Read More

Classical Conditioning

Updated: 28 April 2020 Classical Conditioning, the first school of  Behaviourism, is learning by association – ie: associating one thing with another. The formula is shown in the graphic below. NS = Neutral Stimulus The neutral stimulus on its own is one that does not normally trigger any notable response. UCS = Unconditioned Stimulus     UCR = Unconditioned Response The unconditioned stimulus (eg: smell of food) produces an unconditioned response (eg: dog salivating). An unconditioned response is essentially an unlearned innate reflex. It is triggered  consistently and automatically by the occurrence of one kind of stimulus. Once such a response is triggered, it is not normally altered for its duration by subsequent events. Experience does little to alter the time course or pattern of the response. When the unconditioned stimulus is paired with the neutral stimulus (eg: sound of door opening) at the same time (‘spontaneous conditioning’) as or immediately before (‘forward conditioning’) the unconditioned stimulus (eg: smell of food), the pairing produces the unconditioned response (salivation). Usually it takes repeated multiple pairings for the association to be made.  CS = Conditioned Stimulus     CR = Conditioned Response The conditioned stimulus (what was the neutral stimulus) will now produce the conditioned response… Read More

Robber’s Cave

Relaunched: 4 March 2018 The Robber’s Cave study is on a par with Stanley Milgrim’s ‘Obedience Experiments’ and Philip Zimbardo’s infamous prison study at Stanford University (Craig Haney, Curtis Bank & Philip Zimbardo, 1973), both for its sheer audaciousness and what it tells us about situational pressures to produce normative influence. Muzafer Sherif had been a growing force in the development of Social Psychology ever since his ‘autokinetic effect’ experiments in 1935 had developed the concept of conformity that would come to be known as informational influence. In fact, Sherif could be considered one of the founders of Social Psychology. His work was also highly thought of by interactionist sociologists, becoming the first psychologist to receive the Cooley-Mead Award for contributions to Social Psychology from the American Sociological Association. By the end of the 1940s his interest in understanding social processes, particularly social norms and social conflict had led him to conceive of developing a field experiment in which pubescent boys would be nurtured into forming 2 distinctive teams with strong group identities to see how conflict between the 2 groups could be exacerbated and then reduced. This would be the basis of the famous and challenging Robber’s Cave study of 1954 (Muzafer Sherif et al, 1961).… Read More

Bibliography S

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P-Q    R    S     T     U    V    W    X-Y-Z Sachs, Jeffrey (2005): ‘Why Aid does work’ (BBC News) http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4210122.stm (Accessed: 01/01/17) Sachs, Jeffrey (2011): ‘Stop this Race to the Bottom on Corporation Tax’ in Financial Times (28 March) Sachs, Wolfgang, Reinhard Loske & Manfred Linz (1998): ‘Greening the North: a Post-Industrial Blueprint for Ecology and Equity’ (Zed Books, London) Sagi, Abraham, Marinus Van Ijzendoorn, Ora Aviezer, Frank Donnell & Ofra Mayseless (1994): ‘Sleeping out of home in a Kibbutz Communal Arrangement: It makes a Difference for Infant-Mother Attachment’ in Child Development 65/4 Sagi, Abraham, Marinus Van IJzendoorn & Nina Koren-Karie (1991): ‘Primary Appraisal of the Strange Situation: a Cross-Cultural Analysis of Preseparation Episodes’ in  Developmental Psychology 27/4 Sahlins, Marshall (1997): ‘The Original Affluent Society’ in Majid Rahnema, Victoria Bawtree (eds): ‘The Post Development Reader’ (Zed Books, London) Sainsbury, Brendan & Luke Waterson (2015): ‘Cuba’ (8th edition, Lonely Planet Publications, London) Samuel, William (1981): ‘Personality: searching for the Sources of Human Behaviour’ (International Student Edition, McGraw-Hill, London) Sánchez-Villegas, Almudena, Javier Schlatter, Felipe Ortuño, Francisca Lahortiga, Jorge Pla, Silvia Benito, Miguel Martinez-Gonzalez (2008): ‘Validity of a Self-Reported Diagnosis of… Read More

Bibliography H

A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P-Q    R    S     T     U    V    W    X-Y-Z Haaretz Service (2010): ‘Shas Spiritual Leader: Abbas and Palestinians should perish’ (Haaretz) http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/shas-spiritual-leader-abbas-and-palestinians-should-perish-1.310800 (Accessed: 08/08/14) Habermas, Jürgen (1962; translated by Thomas Burger with Frederick Lawrence, 1989): ‘The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry Into a Category of Bourgeois Society’ (Polity, Cambridge) Hackett, Conrad (2015): ‘5 Facts about the Muslim Population in Europe’ (Pew Research Center) http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/11/17/5-facts-about-the-muslim-population-in-europe/ (Accessed: 24/11/15) Haggbloom, Steven, Renee Warnick, Jason Warnick, Vinessa Jones, Gary Yarbrough, Tinea Russell, Chris Borecky, Reagan McGahhey, John Powell, Jamie Beavers & Emmanuelle Monte (2002): ‘The 100 Most Eminent Psychologists of the 20th Century’ in Review of General Psychology 6/2 Haidt, Jonathan (2001): ‘The Emotional Dog and Its Rational Tail: a Social Intuitionist Approach to Moral Judgement’ in Psychological Review 108/4 Haidt, Jonathan (2005): ‘The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom’ (Basic Books, New York NY) Hain, Peter (2017): ‘Peter Hain: Hard Brexit puts Northern Ireland Peace Process at Risk’ in The Guardian (27 February) Halbwachs, Maurice (1930; translated by Harold Goldblatt, 1978): ‘The Causes of Suicide’ (The Free Press, New York NY)… Read More

The Northampton ‘Supergran’ and the Issues She raises

The footage of ‘supergran’ Ann Timson belting hell out of a bunch of would-be ‘smash ‘n’ grab’ scooter boys at a jewellers in Northampton the other week (7 February, to be precise) has had me musing ever since it was first  broadcast. The fact it is has become a ‘viral phenomenon’, spreading right around the world, has only caused me to muse further. By pure coincidence, a camera man was over the road filming for a documentary and he managed to capture the entire event on film. The footage was aired on ITN News that evening. Within hours, it was on YouTube and received nearly 6,000 views over the next 24 hours. Now there are multiple versions all over YouTube, Daily Motion, etc, using Superman logos and music like Chris De Burgh’s ‘Lady in Red’, etc, etc, etc. Ann Timson’s onslaught has made news bulletins in the United States, Australia and many other countries. The event itself raises important questions – as does the fact it has become such a ‘viral phenomenon’. Just in case you haven’t seen it or you need a reminder, here’s a slight edit of the original footage…   Ann Timson So what made a 71-year-old grandmother with arthritis in… Read More