College Life and the Mores

College Life and the Mores

College Life and the Mores

College Life and the Mores

Excerpt

My interest in this study began when I went from guidance work in a public school system to personnel work in a college. From the beginning I was impressed with the striking differences between the two kinds of institutions. The college was an institution with a society of its own; there was a culture in this college society which was different from that of the public school. Early in my work I was also impressed with the power of tradition on the college campus and its influence in forming the mores of students as well as faculty. The campus was a veritable culture complex. Tradition played a constructive role but also had its destructive effects. The difficulty in working with the destructive elements led me into an understanding of the complexities of a social system strongly conditioned by the past. I began early to see the importance of a study of the dynamics of social behavior which led to the mores of a college campus.

In their attempts to understand the dynamics of social behavior, workers in this area of research have taken into consideration the interrelations of the individual, society, and culture. These attempts indicate that there are meeting points among three long- established scientific disciplines: psychology, sociology, and anthropology. As Linton states:

Following the earlier atomistic trends of scientific research, each of these [psychology, sociology, and anthropology] has been treated as a separate field of investigation and made the subject of a distinct discipline. The individual has been assigned to Psychology, society to Sociology, and culture to Cultural Anthropology, although the last two sciences have shown a constant tendency to overlap in their investigations.

"But," he continues, "it seems safe to say that the next few years . . .

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