Essentials of Social Psychology

Chapter 5: The Social Personality (continued)

Emory S. Bogardus

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5. The Communicative Self. In the give-and-take between persons there arise sets of symbols with their meanings—this is language. Even animals develop languages. The mother bird utters a shrill cry and the young who run to cover are saved. A set of simple sounds, or calls, or emotional ejaculations constitutes language in the animal world. The cry and the exclamation are the starting-points of that elaborate set of symbols which is represented in an unabridged dictionary.

The human infant early learns to cry—and hence to speak—in a half dozen different ways. To one who is unacquainted with children these different cries sound alike, but to the mother they are meaningful. There are the particular cries of hunger, of physical pain, of fear, of anger, of general discomfort and fretfulness, and of the acquired habit to be taken up and rocked. Each of these cries develops in later life into whole vocabularies. If acquired cries, such as the cry to be picked up and soothed, does not produce the vaguely desired result, it will die out. In other words, the cry and the recognition of its meaning are inseparable. Language in its simplest expression is a sym-

(95) -bol and its meaning. The significance of the symbol must be clear to the individual with whom communication is held.

The symbol is always a gesture of some form. It may be pantomimic, i. e., of the hands and shoulders, or facial, or vocal. Gestures of the hands and shoulders are common among the deaf, among foreigners who are trying in a strange environment to make their wants known, among any excited group of people, among adults who are at a loss to find the precise words that they want to use. Civilized people use pantomimic and facial gestures continually for the purpose of naturally supplementing vocal gestures and in order to meet the needs of the communicative self when vocal language fails.

It is stated that the Eskimos who were brought to the Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893 immediately began to communicate with a group of deaf and dumb Americans on the basis of "sign" language. The two groups possessed a common medium of communication.

The ordinary gestures of the hands and shoulders convey meanings which are easy to grasp. Pantomimic gestures are practical, for example, the open, extended hand, or the clenched fist. Pantomimic gestures are unconsciously imitated on a large scale. Even the majority of the people of an entire nation may develop common peculiarities of pantomimic gestures.

The facial gesture centers about the eyes and mouth. Like pantomimic gesture, it is easily and universally intelligible. If you are perfectly frank and unreserved

(96) when you look at me, I can tell how you feel about me even though you do not speak my vocal language. The smile of welcome or the glance of hatred are understood the world around. The foreigner always and naturally gives careful attention to the facial gestures of the people whom he meets, whether he be a Greek immigrant in the United States or an American in Turkey. Although he may require several years to learn the vocal language of a country, he understands facial gestures at once.

Vocal language arises out of the sudden exhalation of the breath—in the exclamatory cry. An elemental step in the process of language formation is the naming of objects, i. e., the creating of nouns. When the baby cries "ba ba," "pa pa," and "ma ma," he names himself, his father, and his mother respectively—unconsciously to himself and to others, including his parents. The rise of verbs, except as they are sometimes used as nouns, comes late. A verb involves the recognition of two objects and particularly the relationship between them. Abstract concepts are the last phases of language to acquire definite meaning. A five year old girl with a considerable vocabulary of nouns and verbs will persistently ask such questions as these: "What is 'honesty'?" "What does `honest to goodness' mean?" "What does `I doubt it' mean?" Even an adult finds difficulty in reducing such a term as "democracy" to satisfactory imagery.

Teaching is a process of transforming unintelligible and higher ideas and methods into intelligible and lower signs and symbols. Frequently the successful teacher, whether of music or of cooking, is she who

(97) goes through a whole act in the presence of the pupils. As the latter learn, the teacher reproduces only a few motions, and finally she gives only now and then a gesture, "a cry, a look, an attitude." The orchestra leader finds his trained players responding at once and accurately to his slightest facial and pantomimic gestures. The teacher of philosophy speaks to his class as through a glass darkly until perchance by a few deft chalk marks on the blackboard he releases a flood of light.

In every case the gesture represents the beginning of a whole act.[1] As soon as the second party recognizes the act for which the given gesture is the beginning, conversation has begun. The response will consist of another gesture, which in turn is the beginning of another act—and thus the conversation of attitudes and appropriate responses takes place. Hence, language is a social phenomenon and consists in an interchange of gestures and suitable responses between individuals; language is a conversation of attitudes and responses. Social life itself is built upon interchanges of symbols and their meanings between individuals.

As new individual and social situations arise, new symbols of expression are needed. Sometimes the invented term is a studied compound of latinized antiques and sometimes it is the shortest cut between two ideas, namely, a new slang phrase. In other words, language is always in the process of creation. Heretofore new communicative gestures usually have been

(98) created fortuitously and thoughtlessly. There is need for an increased conscious control of the processes of inventing language.

The social psychology of conversation is a fascinating and important theme. (1) A good conversationalist has a rich personality. He has something to give, besides words; he is not merely a fluent talker. He has more than a large vocabulary and a wide command of English. He is not only courteous and possessed of cultivated manners, but projects his personality into the situations of other people and throws helpful, sympathetic light upon the experiences of his associates. In his contact with his fellows, he is both individual and social.

(2) A good conversationalist knows a few things well and authoritatively, but he does not talk "shop." At this point many persons are helpless. They know and can talk about only one thing—their daily work. Outside this subject, they have nothing to converse about except the weather and items of gossip. The praiseworthy conversationalist has a number of avocational interests. Although denied occupational topics and gossip, he is able to introduce several avocational lines of thought. He has travelled, and observed keenly when travelling. He has developed a constantly enlarging horizon of knowledge.

(3) A good conversationalist studies the interests of people. He relates his avocational information to the major interests of his friends. His conversation enlightens others, not concerning himself, but regarding themselves. He does not talk about the "big I,"

(99) but creates an important "you." He centers his conversation in the personalities of his listeners.

(4) A good conversationalist is a trained listener. He is not a monologist. He does not do all the talking. He gets other people to talk. It is a part of his function to get his would-be listeners to describe their unique experiences. He endeavors to learn something from everyone whom he meets.

(5) A good conversationalist is a director of conversation. He is a skillful questioner. He elicits information from the bashful and halts the talk of the wordy. He not only does not monopolize conversation himself, but he permits no one else to do so. He does not simply make his own contribution to the discussions of an assembled company, but he sees that everyone else does likewise.

The communicative self is close to the heart of social life. With a very simple or even a very elaborate set of communicative machinery, the communicative self makes social intercourse possible. It arises from social contacts. It affords the basis for the recognition of likemindedness ; it turns like-mindedness into closely knit social intimacies.

The communicative self makes possible a social consciousness. It enables individuals to generate social ideals and to realize a complex order of social cooperation. With its ever-increasing array of gesture-meanings language constitutes perhaps the most fundamental social institution. Without it, neither the family, school, church, nor the state could arise. In brief, the communicative self is the social self in action.


6. The Mirthful Self. At first thought the subject of laughter does not seem to be serious enough to merit scientific discussion. It, however, is a phenomenon which manifests itself continually in social life. Further, some of the world's greatest thinkers have pondered over the causes of laughter.

According to Aristotle comedy is an imitation of character, or characteristics, of a lower type than the imitator typifies. The laughable is something degrading in the object or person at which one laughs—this is known as the theory of degradation. Thomas Hobbes developed the theory of superiority. According to this conception one laughs because of an expansion of feeling which is brought on through realizing his superiority over the person, or thing, or situation at which he laughs. Addison held that pride is the chief cause of laughter.

Kant explained laughter on the basis of nullification of expectation, that is, laughter arises "from the sudden transformation of a strained expectation into nothing." The theory of incongruity was advanced by Schopenhauer. Laughter is caused by the sudden realization of an incongruity between a conception and the real object with which it is in some way connected. Herbert Spencer advanced the idea that laughter indicates an effort which suddenly encounters a void. Sully states that laughter is due to a sudden release from a strained and tense situation. Bergson expresses the belief that laughter is primarily caused by the appearance of mechanical inelasticity in human life. These single theory explanations of laughter are enlightening, but partial and hence inadequate. The

(101) synthetic treatment of laughter which is given by Boris Sidis is stimulating and extensively illustrated but incomplete.[2]

The writer believes that the feeling of mirth arises from the social self and related antecedents and that its causes are very many and intricately interwoven. The mirthful self is the social self suddenly experiencing any one of an endless variety of unexpected, incongruous but relatively harmless occurrences. An elemental condition of laughter is an agreeable tone of consciousness. In this regard, Professor Bergson seems to overlook an important factor, for he says that the appeal of laughter is to intelligence, pure and simple, and that "laughter is incompatible with emotion."[3] It is true that laughter is incompatible with sorrow and as a rule with anger, but on the other hand it bubbles over naturally from the fountains of joy. In fact a feeling or emotional basis of pleasantness and agreeableness must exist before any situation appears humorous to the individual.

In order to see the humorous side of life one must enjoy a fair degree of physical health and of mental exuberance. If he has suffered long hours of tedious labor without sleep, if he has been the victim of recent financial reverses, if loved ones are dangerously ill, the mirthful self is likely to be quiescent. The play tendencies and the playful spirit are fundamental to the expression of mirth. It is from the most playful and exuberant hours of group life that the heartiest laughter breaks forth.


Another factor which is basic to laughter is the gregarious instinct. Laughter is born from social contacts. Whenever two or more persons who are kindred spirits are gathered together under agreeable circumstances, they are likely to burst out into laughter at any moment. If a person who is alone is heard to laugh long and heartily he is at once interrogated, and if he repeats frequently the process, he is regarded with suspicion. Thus, the conditions precedent to laughter are an agreeable tone of consciousness, physical and mental health, favoring circumstances, the play tendencies, and gregariousness.

In the conditions precedent to laughter there is a set of relatively simple causes. The simplest cause of laughter is probably physical tickling—the infant laughs automatically when the palms of his hands or the bottoms of his feet are touched or rubbed slightly. In a severe form this factor leads to hysterical laughter.

Another elemental cause is physical and mental exuberance. The simplest incongruity will set off the joy-in-living spirit of a group of girls, and the result will be ripples of silly laughter. In this way giggling usually originates. The boisterous laughter of youths may be traced to similar origins.

Relief from strained situations sometimes produces laughter. Observe the children, released from hours of study and recitation, rush forth from the school building with joyous peals of laughter. Sudden release from either physical or mental strain is a cause of laughter.


Likewise, exhaustion when unexpectedly relieved may result in hysterical laughter—a subnormal type. Physical tickling, surplus energy, relief from tension, and sudden release from overstrain constitute four physico-psychological sources of laughter.

The second important group of factors is the psycho-sociological. In this class the simplest is group contagion. A child may laugh because he hears another child or adult laughing. A member of an adult group may laugh because he is unconsciously stimulated by the laughing of others. This type is a direct expression of sympathetic emotion.

A member of a group will often laugh in order to seem interested in the story or incident that is related. Even though the matter may not appeal to him as humorous, he participates in the laughter out of respect for the host or the speaker.

Laughter sometimes results from the desire not to be conspicuous. The listener may fail to catch the point of a story, but joins in the group laughter. When other persons are enjoying apparently a choice bit of comedy, it often seems wiser to participate even though the point has not been grasped than to be conspicuous by appearing cold or stolid.

Laughter is occasionally forced. An individual is insulted by a slighting remark. He does not want to recognize the incident, therefore he will parry the thrust by laughing. One may be asked an embarrassing or impertinent question, but in order not to show his feelings in the presence of spectators, he will turn the matter aside with a laugh. The implication is that

(104) the problem is not nearly as important as the questioner believes, or would have other people believe, and consequently the one who is questioned is relieved of embarassment or confusion.

Laughter is sometimes utilized to cover pain. One's pride may lead him to invoke a laughing mood. Pain is frequently camouflaged by laughter. Tears may be concealed by laughter. A four-year-old boy picked himself up after a hard fall, rubbed his bleeding knee, and laughingly said: "Wasn't that a joke on me?"

Children, and some adults, will indulge in laughter in order to attract attention. The girl who laughs the loudest may be one who is wearing a bright new ribbon or the latest fad in sweaters, or the boy who laughs above the boisterous laughter of the gang may be a conscious candidate for hero worship.

Persons are paid to make others laugh. They undergo periods of training in order to become skillful in deliberately creating laughter. The professional reader, the platform lecturer upon humorous themes, and the actors in high-class comedies are usually constructive in their aims and results. Of all paid entertainers, the average vaudeville performer or burlesque actor makes the crudest attempts. Plain silliness is preferable to the sexually suggestive jokes at which respectable people laugh when attending a musical comedy.

Probably the most common cause of laughter is found in the incongruous actions of other individuals. A dog chases his tail, a boy with a basket of eggs falls down, a dignified man runs after his wind-blown hat —these are never-failing, mirth-provoking incongrui-

(105) -ties. The Charlie Chaplin films succeed because of the portrayal of incongruous movements, actions, and situations.

The instructor in a history class noticed a student who was gazing out of the window and called upon her to recite. When he suddenly pronounced her name, "Miss Smith," she cried out, "Hello." She had been startled from her day-dreaming, and her incongruous reply set the class into an uproar. The humor of A House-Boat on the Styx is partially due to the bringing together in time and place of famous characters with their widely divergent ways and experiences —the result is an incongruous juxtaposition of events and personalities.

In this connection Henri L. Bergson has pointed out that incongruity consists frequently in mechanical movements or gestures where the naturally human is expected. The comic physiognomy is essentially a mechanical facial gesture. The mechanical gesture of the hand of a public speaker upon repetition becomes ludicrous. The dignified person who falls, falls hard, that is, mechanically. The goat who rears and butts whenever his forehead is pressed acts mechanically—and hence comically.

Then there are incongruous ideas which are common causes of laughter. Some of these types of incongruity in ideas have been analyzed by Boris Sidis. (1) Illogical statements. Many of the "Pat and Mike" stories are of this character. Pat was breathlessly running along a country road in Ireland one day when he was accosted by Mike who asked him why he was hurrying so fast. "I have a long way to

(106) go," replied Pat, "and I want to get there before I am all tired out."

(2) Grammatical and rhetorical errors. Common illustrations are found in the assertions of young children. Note the following examples.

"Don't unbusy me."

"The sun is rising down" (setting).

"You two people are sitting down and we two people are sitting up" (standing).

(3) Idiomatical and related mistakes. Children, foreigners, and uneducated persons are often the victims of the mistaken use of words and phrases. The foreigner in any land falls into countless misguided uses of a strange tongue. These errors are illustrated in the "Togo" stories by Wallace Irwin

"I studied dictionary so I could unlearn my poor ignorance."

"I welcome lobster cordially, yet I never could make them set quietly on my digestion."

"While I was setting pealing potatoes of suddenly come Indiana yell befront of my back while stool leg on which I was occupying flop uply so confused that I were deposed to floor with potatoes pouring over my brain."

(4) The play on words. When a Scotch regiment was marching to the front in France, a French soldier who was watching them said: "They can't be men, for they wear skirts, and they can't be women for they have moustaches." "I have it," said another poilu, "they're that famous Middlesex regiment from London."

(5) Overstatement or understatement that is mod-

(107) -erate and implied. Lying is not humorous. A House-Boat on the Styx affords many illustrations of overstatements. After careful calculation and patient waiting for thirteen days the hunter finds that the sixty-eight ducks which he has been observing have formed in a straight line. The powder is minutely estimated and a valuable pearl—since the marksman has no bullets—is used as the instrument of destruction. The sixty-eight ducks are killed. The pearl traveled through the bodies of sixty-seven and retained enough force to kill the sixty-eighth, in whose body it was found—and saved.

(6) A sudden change from the serious to the trifling or ridiculous. Boris Sidis refers to "Pat" who was being upbraided for not being better educated and who gave the following explanation: "I was a bright man at birth, but when I was a few days old, my nurse exchanged me for another baby who was a fool."

(7) Unintended suggestion. A church in a western town must hold long services for it recently announced: "The regular services will commence next Sunday evening at 7 o'clock and continue until further notice."

One day two lawyers who were arguing the opposite sides of a case became angry at one another and one of them pointing to the other, said: "That attorney is the ugliest and meanest lawyer in town."

"You forget yourself, you forget yourself, Mr. Smith," said the court, rapping for order with his gavel.


To make fun of others constitutes an entirely different set of causes of laughter. The group laughs at almost any mistake or idiosyncrasy of the individual. If the error is easily discernible, the group laughter may be spontaneous. If the mistake is deep-seated it may not be detected at once and simultaneously, and the laughter of the group may be delayed. Sometimes the group is prejudiced against an individual, or it may even be organized to embarrass him — and he becomes the victim of concerted, even of malicious, laughter.

There is laughter which is simple ridicule the individual is merely derided. There is laughter which is satirical ridicule and is caused usually by the employment of humorous exaggeration, although caustic elements may be used. There is the ironical laugh which is induced by covert satire. Then there is laughter which is purely and openly sarcastic, biting, and generally anti-social. Social ridicule of whatever degree is powerful because it directly affects the socially reflected self.

Social laughter is a corrective. It arouses fear, "restrains eccentricity," and prevents the individual from becoming a stone hitching-post. Similarly, it prevents social groups from becoming mechanically inelastic. Group laughter compels the members to keep in touch with one another, and familiarizes them with the different points of view. In other words, the mirthful self is highly gregarious. When persons laugh together, they become better acquainted. Mirthfulness increases the social tone. Many a tense situation is relieved by a humorous turn. Laughter purifies,

(109) clarifies, socializes.

On the other hand, mirthfulness individualizes. If one would voice a strange idea, he must brave social laughter. From the opposite angle, the mirthful self is antagonistic to sympathy. If one puts himself completely in the place of another, he will rarely laugh at the other. Thus, the mirthful self may be unsympathetic, impersonal, objective, and even individualizing.

The mirthful self is the successful self. Mirthfulness builds up both the physical and mental nature of the individual. It shakes him up, stimulates him, and re-creates him. It sets his organism in tune, and enables him to laugh at his duller moments and his blunders. Progress has been made when one's mirthful self habitually laughs at one's defeated self. No national character in America so well exemplifies this trait at the present time (1920) as does ex-president Taft. By this token one can "come back," renew his mental youth, and multiply manifold his social usefulness.

7. The Socially Dependable Self. The dependable self embraces a set of well-balanced habits. Strength of character arises from habits. Character includes disposition and temperament. Disposition is the sum total of one's instinctive tendencies, and is largely determined by hereditary gifts. Temperament is one's constitutional way or ways of evaluating life ,[4] and like disposition, is chiefly hereditary.

The socially dependable self, or character, is built

(110) upon both disposition and temperament. It comprises not simply habits, but habits which may be built up in ways that the individual may himself determine. Character involves the extent to and the ways in which one organizes his actions.

Character also includes the desires and interests. Desires are rooted in the instinctive and feeling side of life. They are elemental and typhonic when once started in motion. They are racial impulses. They are often expressed crudely, abruptly, and they may shift suddenly from one to another object of satisfaction. Consequently, the socially dependable self is one in which the desires have been brought under definite control.

Interests are subjective-objective phenomena which have one source in desires, another in instincts, such as the curiosity instinct, and in objects in the environment. They are usually less fluctuating and more often concealed than the feelings or even the desires. They come to be grounded in the thought side of personality and are not easily modified. They are especially dependent on the appeal of the environment. They are more objective, less passional, and more dependable than desires.

The dependable self is psychical; the socially dependable self is psychical and moral. Strength of character is socially insufficient. A criminal may have strength of character but have used it in anti-social ways. Education does not necessarily give social dependence, because education may train the individual only in self-strength, self-culture, and show him how to manipulate his fellows to his advantage and to

(111) their loss. "Why did you come to college?" I asked a young man of strong character a few months ago, and he frankly replied, "So that I can learn how to work other people."

The socially dependable self is born of a training which presents the increasing welfare of man as a goal. In a life of group interactions, honesty, reliability, balance, chastity, courage of convictions are essential. The individual develops a socially dependable self first in his relationships with his home group or in his play group, i. e. the gang; then in his dealings with larger groups, such as his occupational coterie, when we pronounce him occupationally ethical; then in his actions involving national welfare, when we term him a patriot. The socially dependable self is not fully developed, however, until the ideals of public welfare within the nation in times of peace as well as of war and the ideals of world welfare all the time are controlling factors. Likewise, the socially dependable group-self, whether of a family or of a nation, is not completely realized until it acts habitually in recognition of the well-being of its constituent units and of the larger groups of which it is a functional part.

The realization of a perfect personality, in conclusion, takes cognizance of three sets of factors. (1 ) There is the original human nature, composed largely of instinctive tendencies. (2) There is social action, i. e., the give-and-take between individuals. It is the social environment which is essential to the development of human nature. Social contacts determine what phases of the individual's nature will be devel-

(112) -oped. Both heredity and environment are determining influences in personality. (3) Then there is the individual's initiative by which he can make himself over, and construct habits in almost any direction that he chooses to project his original nature.[5] Human nature has the power of changing itself.

The individual must intelligently distinguish between self-love and selfishness.[6] Self-love includes the conservation and the subsequent careful expenditure of one's energies in behalf of public welfare; selfishness is the miserly hoarding of or the wasteful rioting with one's energies in attempts to gratify primarily one's own self. Intelligence is necessary in order to distinguish between selfish and unselfish living.

Conscience is an elusive but essential element in building a perfect personality. Although the psychologist has not yet given a satisfactory description of conscience, it nevertheless exerts tremendous power. Conscience is the most socialized self passing judgment on all the lower selves. Since this highest self is an ideal self, rarely realized at the time, it is often impractical. One's conscience, or the activities of one's conscience, is measured at any particular moment by the distance which one's ideal of social living has advanced beyond his actual living. When the individual complains that his conscience troubles him he ordinarily means that in some actual deed he has not lived the social vision that he sees. In its highest

(113) calling, conscience is the main agent in making socially dependable selves and in perfecting personality.



1. What is the social origin of language?

2. Name one new word or phrase that you have recently added to your vocabulary and describe the circumstances under which you made the addition.

3. Why do people have a strong desire to communicate with others?

4.. What is the chief function of communication?

5. Why is there so much conversation about trivial matters?

6. What is the chief attribute of a successful conversationalist?

7. Why is it difficult for many people to converse at a formal reception?

8. What is a vocal gesture?

9. Is a word a syncopated act?

10. Why are facial gestures similar the world over, whereas each race has a different vocal language?


11. Why is laughter a subject important enough for serious discussion?

12. Why is it worth while to develop the habit of seeing the humorous side of life?

13. What are the physical expressions of a hearty laugh?


14. What is Shakespeare's meaning when he speaks of being "stabbed" with laughter?

15. What does Milton mean when he writes of "laughter holding both his sides"?

16. Why do we laugh at the incongruous or degrading experiences of others instead of feeling grieved ?

17. Why is a city dude in the country a mirth-producing object?

18. Why is a "hayseed" in the city the subject of laughter?

19. Is man more afraid of social ridicule than of severe physical punishment?

20. Illustrate: Laughter kills innovations.

21. How do you explain the statement that "the true hero is one who can ignore social laughter"?

22. Why do people laugh at stories which involve stuttering ?

23. Why is the walking of a drunken man considered laughable by many persons?

24. Why does a wry face, although simulating pain, cause the spectator to laugh?

25. Why does the entrance of a dog into a lecture room filled with students produce laughter?

26. Why does the breaking down of a chair during an address provoke laughter?

27. Why is the "comic sheet" laughable?

28. Why is it laughable to see the waves dash unexpectedly over a person who is walking along the beach?

29. Why is a trivial interruption that occurs during a prayer service often laughable?


30. Distinguish between humor and wit.

31. Why are deaf people and not blind people used in comedies?

32. What is the most common cause of laughter?

33. What is the leading social value of laughter?


34. Why is character socially essential?

35. Are all dependable persons social?

36. Are all social selves dependable?

37. Why have not more socially dependable selves been turned out by our educational system in the United States?



Baldwin, J. M., Social and Ethical Interpretations, pp. 137-48.

Froebel, F., The Education of Man, pp. 208-25.

Mead, G. H., "Social Consciousness and the Consciousness of Meaning," Psychological Bul., VII: 397-405.

Preyer, W., Mental Development in the Child, Ch. VII.

Tarde, Gabriel, The Laws of Imitation, pp. 255-65.

——, La logique sociale, Ch. V.

Todd, A. J., Theories of Social Progress Ch. XXVIII.

Tylor, E. B., Anthropology, Chs. IV, V, VII.

Wundt, William, Elements of Folk Psychology, pp. 53-67.


Bergson, Henri, Laughter.

Hall,G. Stanley, and A. Allin, "The Psychology of Tickling, Laughing, and the Comic," Amer. Jour. of Psychol., IX : 1-41.


Bliss,Sylvia H., "The Origin of Laughter," Amer. Jour. of Psychol., 26: 236-46.

Meredith, George, Essay on Comedy and the Comic Spirit.

Patrick, G. T. W., The Psychology o f Relaxation, Ch. III.

Sidis, Boris, The Psychology of Laughter.

Sully, James, An Essay on Laughter.


Baldwin, J. M., Social and Ethical Interpretations, Ch. XV.

Hetherington and Muirhead, Social Purpose, Ch. V.

McDougall, William, An Introduction to Social Psychology, Ch. VIII.


  1. Cf. G. H. Mead, "Social Consciousness and the Consciousness of Meaning," Psychological Bul., VII: 397-405.
  2. See Sully's An Essay on Laughter, Bergson's Laughter, and Sidis' Psychology of Laughter for extended discussions.
  3. Laughter, pp. 5, 139.
  4. Cf. William McDougall, An Introduction to Social Psychology, (eighth edit.), pp. 258 ff.
  5. For a philosophical discussion of this topic see Human Nature and Its Remaking by W. E. Hocking.
  6. Developed in an unpublished lecture by F. W. Blackmar.

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