2017 - 2018 Courses

Gary S. Gregg
Professor of Psychology
Kalamazoo College

PSYC 101:  General Psychology

     This introduction to the field of psychology uses primary readings to examine four controversial topics in depth:   the nature and measurement of intelligence;   the psychoanalytic theory of the unconscious, trauma, and psychotherapy;  biological and cultural determinants of gender development; and theories of prejudice and ethnocentrism.


Course Guide (library guide to resources)

Against School     or here (author's website):   Against School



FYSeminar155:  The New World Order

     In 1991 President George Bush (Sr.) announced the emergence of a “New World Order.”  Soviet and Chinese “communism” had collapsed and almost overnight the world became a single capitalist system.  “Globalization” then accelerated with light-speed communication through the internet, an intensified flow of goods around the planet, and the outsourcing of work to low-wage countries – accompanied by rapidly increasing inequality and concentration of wealth.  Urbanization also accelerated, swelling the slums of the world’s “megacities.”
     The seminar will study recent analyses of the New World Order in the context of theories of “modernization” and “globalization.”  It will examine the ideology of “neoliberalism” that is its blueprint, the culture of the investment bankers who are its architects, and neo-Marxist critiques of the capitalist “Empire.”  We will read about the New World as lived by workers in Galesburg, IL and Reynosa Mexico, slum-dwellers in Mumbai, and wives and children of the “masters of the universe” in Manhattan.
     Students will write paragraph summaries of the readings, brief review-style essays, a short research paper, and a final essay on “The End of History.”



PSYC 230:  Psychology of Ethnocentrism

An introduction to psychological studies of prejudice and ethnocentrism, focusing on racism in the U.S. and anti-Semitism in Europe as case studies. Reviews typologies of ethnocentrism, and considers the role of psychodynamic, group process, and cognitive factors.

Syllabus       Electronic Reserve Readings are available on the Syllabus


Stages of Ethnic Identity Development

Right Wing Authoritarianism Notes (Bob Altemeyer)


PSYC 238: Culture and Psychology of Arab-Muslim Societies

     An introduction to Arab-Muslim societies and cultures, covering social structure and family organization in tribal, village, and urban communities, core value systems associated with the etiquettes of honor-and-modesty and with the beliefs and practices of Islam, and influences on psychological development through the life-span.




PSYC 250:  Social Psychology

     An introduction to core theories and research in social psychology, focusing on social conformity, attitudes and mass media, cognitive dissonance theory, and aggression. Students conduct a group research project in one of these areas, and learn SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) as a data analysis tool.


When Prophecy Fails

The Political Mind


PSYC340: Cultural Psychology

     Examines theories of how culture shapes thought, feeling, and the development of personality. Covers three main topics: the "configurationist" theory developed by Ruth Benedict, Margaret Mead and others based largely on studies of Native American societies; "psychoanalytic" theory, as used by Sudhir Kakar in his analysis of Hindu India; and research on psychopathology, taking spirit possession and depression as case studies.


Electronic Reserve Reading:

Dwyer:  Moroccan Dialogues



H.D.S.R. 390:  Junior Seminar

     This seminar provides junior HDSR majors with a core set of interdisciplinary perspectives on domestic and international social processes.  These perspectives all seek to link psychological, social milieu, and macro-social levels of analysis -- which is a major objective of the HDSR major.  This year the first half of the seminar focuses on the "Society and Health" framework being developed by social epidemiologists, and the second half on theories of modernization and underdevelopment, with case studies of New Guinea "cargo cults" and the Iranian revolution.


     H.D.S.R. Courseguide (thanks to Stacy Nowicki & Robin Rank)

     Wealth and Health Data


PSYC410: Theories of Personality

            This seminar will study theories of personality development and structure, focusing on three levels of personality organization, and the genetic, social, and cultural factors that shape them, and on stage models of life-span development.  In addition to studying theories and personality assessment methods, students will (1) create and evaluate a measure of a personality trait, need, or motive, (2) synthesize their own theory of personality, and (3) conduct an individual “case study” of personality development.




PSYC 430: Interviewing and Narrative Analysis

     This advanced seminar covers the "Grounded Theory" approach to qualitative research, the theory and practice of interviewing, cultural and psychological theories of narrative and metaphorical meaning, and multiple strategies of textual analysis.  Students conduct both focus group and individual life history research, and study both the cultural models and individual narrative styles which shape personal identity.