WesMaps - Wesleyan University Catalog 2019-2020       Summer Session       Winter Session       Home       Archive       Search
Making the Psychological: Discovering, Manufacturing, Circulating
CHUM 359
Spring 2020 not offered
Crosslisting: PSYC 359, SISP 360

Psychology aims to explain human experiences and thoughts, including unconscious ones. Using scientific methods, psychology produces valid representations of human nature, names them, and circulates that knowledge for both its truth value and usefulness to society and individuals. Despite much success in these aims, the validity of much of psychology's knowledge is in being challenged - as evidenced in recent concerns about the reproducibility of experiments. We will examine the epistemic grounds of psychology's truth claims and consider alternative models that understand the truth claims to be enactments, constructions, or ideologies that rehearse cultural beliefs. Case studies of science-based knowledge eventually found to be inaccurate or exaggerated (priming research; the power pose) are used to examine how some truth claims are generated and challenged, and cases of robust research are used to explore how some truth claims acquire credibility inside and outside the laboratory. We ask, too, how these claims travel to be taken up as new ways for individuals to experience the self and social world, and examine the public's and our own aspirations to expand consciousness and act otherwise. Students will develop case studies of psychological knowledge, its validation, circulation, and effects in the world.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: SBS CHUM
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: PSYC105
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (PSYC)(STS)

Last Updated on JUN-24-2024
Contact wesmaps@wesleyan.edu to submit comments or suggestions. Please include a url, course title, faculty name or other page reference in your email ? Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, 06459