American Sociology
Emory S. Bogardus

Howard Odum

Emory S. Bogardus, twenty-first president of the American Sociological Society, was born near Belvidere, Illinois, February 21, 1882, received his A.B. degree from Northwestern in 1908, A.M. in 1909, and Ph.D. from Chicago in 1911. He went directly from receiving his University of Chicago doctorate to Southern California as assistant professor in 1911 and became professor and head of the department of sociology shortly thereafter. He came into the field of sociology after the usual preliminary trial-and-error method of working in business, in newspaper reporting, on the farm, and in boys' clubs in the city. In Northwestern University he was first interested in mathematics and in philosophy from which he became interested in the experimental aspects of psychology. Then, from his experience in boys' work at the University Settlement, he became interested in problems of maladjustment and alleviating human misery. His next step was to go to the University of Chicago directly from Northwestern where he had majored in psychology. At Chicago

(159) he found the exact persons and fields through which to continue his interests as basic to his specialization in sociology. Small emphasized social process, Henderson featured social organization, Vincent and Thomas both came near to social psychology, Mead continued the philosophical interest, and W. I. Thomas featured the methodological emphasis upon research. All these added up logically to influence Bogardus' later work.

Bogardus must be recorded as one of the most prolific writers among all the American sociologists. His total bibliography, beginning in 1898 and continuing for more than fifty years, added up to 275 titles of which he catalogued some 41 as being in the field of general sociology, 15 on leadership, 27 on social distance, 52 on race and ethnic groups, 30 on social psychology, 17 on social research, 16 on cooperatives. Many of these were minor contributed notes or short articles in Sociology and Social Research.

In a tribute paid to Professor Bogardus by his colleagues and distinguished guests in 1937, in token of twenty-five years of leadership, it was pointed out that more important even than his editorial work and the many articles he has contributed to this and other journals, were his widely used books. Among these were Introduction to the Social Sciences, 1913, 1922; Introduction to Sociology, 1913, 1927, 1931, 1949; Essentials of Social Psychology, 1917, 1923; A History of Social Thought, 1922,1929; The New Social Research, 1923, 1927; Fundamentals of Social Psychology, 1924, 1941; Social Problems and Social Processes, edited, 1933; Contemporary Sociology, 1931; Leaders and Leadership, 1934; Essentials of Americanization, 1919,1923; Immigration and Race Attitudes, 1928; The Mexican in the United States, 1934; The City Boy and His Problems, 1926; Introduction to Social Research, 1936; The Development of Social Thought, 1940, 1947. His writings, so the tribute recalled, were "known for their comprehensiveness and synthetic completeness, the systematic organization of material, the clear-cut lucid descriptions and practical applications, the sympathetic understanding of social situations, and the broad-minded attitude and wholesome spirit which pervade them all."

In an informal way Professor Bogardus has classified his activities for us. He says, "My efforts have been given, first, to teaching, in order to earn a living, in order to have stimulating contacts with young people with their inquiring minds, in order to keep in touch with youth and

( 160) their dynamic outlook on life. Second, there has been a continuous connection with editorial work as editor of sociological monographs, the Journal of Applied Sociology, the Journal of Sociology and Social Research, and Research News. Closely related has been a continuous activity for the past thirty-five years in reviewing sociological books, perhaps two or three dozen a year. Third, research projects have commanded attention. These have dealt with race relations, occupational attitudes, public opinion, the consumer cooperative movement, leadership. Not a little attention has been given to research methods. To assist in teaching, texts and syllabi have been prepared, presenting integrated pictures of various aspects of sociology. Fourth, administrative activities have been carried on for thirty-six years as head of the department of sociology, dean of a school of social work, and now dean of a graduate school. This administrative work has involved in each case a great deal of pioneering, which has required that many obstacles be faced and over-come. Fifth, throughout the years active membership has been maintained on at least from three to five boards of directors of community organizations. These positions have given many first-hand contacts with social problems and offered opportunities for research work."

Bogardus continues, in his special statement for this book, "Perhaps needless to say the five foregoing activities have been carried on both simultaneously and continuously since 1911. Travel has been an out-standing hobby. It has brought first-hand contacts with people in England, France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland, and Italy; in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Panama, Peru, Chile, Argentina, and Brazil; in Hawaii, Japan, Manchuria, China, and the Philippines."

Bogardus' presidential address printed in the Publications of the American Sociological Society, Volume XXVI, 1932, was entitled "Social Process on the Pacific Coast." He thought that invasion and population succession had brought about such changes as to make the Pacific Coast an "experiment station" in human relationships. "Conflict, adjustment, accommodation were incident to the meeting of heterogeneous races and cultures. His assumptions were that the meeting of the East and the West would, through overlapping and interpenetration, bring into existence a new culture." This was in line with his general definition of sociology as "the study of collective and personal behavior in group life" in which the leading sociological data are social groups, personalities,.

( 161)  social attitudes, and social processes. More will be presented about Bogardus in Chapters 14, 15, 19, 21, 23.


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