As we enter the 100-year anniversary of the First World War, this course looks at what that conflict and others have taught social psychologists about trauma and memory, no recognised as one of the most powerful and profound effects of conflict on human beings. The course is divided into three parts. Part One studies the political and social context of the start of the 20th century and the build up to the Great War itself, through an examination of social identity and the process of conflict. Part Two analyses the history of trauma and the role of WWI and particularly the war in the trenches of Europe, which brought psychology into the understanding of the impact of conflict on the mind. Part Three considers the effects on memory and the place of anniversaries and commemorations, exploring the shifting and conflicting schema presented in this anniversary period 2014-19. The course includes several field trips around London to museums and sites and may include an optional trip abroad to France to the battlefields of the First and Second World Wars with the optional course fee payable in London with a credit card. Prereq: PSY 205/209 or equivalent introductory psychology course.
Semesters: Fall, Spring