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Esay on Psychology in the Mass Media - Social Behavior

3 pages
571 words
Harvey Mudd College
Type of paper: 
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People tend to behave differently when faced with diverse social situations. The mass media portrays such behavior in various ways and contexts. In the article "Home advantage in Soccer," Steven Zheng writes on how an English soccer team, Manchester United faced a Turkish team, Galatasaray, in the European elite club competition, the Champions League. The game was held in Turkey in 1993. The English team was the superior team, and it was a big favorite in the match. Despite the superiority of this team, however, it could only manage a draw in the game, and it was eliminated from the competition in a result that shocked many people in the soccer world. Zheng attributes the poor results of the English club to the hostile atmosphere provided by the fans in Istanbul. According to the article, large banners with derogatory messages such as Welcome to Hell and RIP Manchester greeted Manchester Uniteds players as they arrived in Istanbul to face Galatasaray. The article further clarifies that Manchester United was eliminated, simultaneously, shocking soccer fans throughout the world and displaying the power of home advantage(Zheng). According to Zheng, people could not believe that such a strong team could be beaten by the then little-known Galatasaray. Zhengs article basically presents the varying social behaviors that people portray depending on social situations. Though unwittingly, it represents social psychology as portrayed in the mass media.

Human beings behave in certain ways due to the social contexts they find themselves in, and this can be explained by social psychology. Social psychology is a theoretical term that dwells on how the presence of other people determines how one behaves in a particular social setting (McDougall). It explains the idea that there are determinants of social behavior among human beings, and this behavior changes in accordance with the social situation at hand. According to the information in Zhengs article, the crowd cheers every move by the home players and this elevates their performance. The crowd pressure, in turn, seems to influence the referee. Although the referee is supposed to be impartial, the crowd gives him undue psychological pressure to support the home team. Zhengs article attributes the victory that the home team gains against Manchester United to home ground advantage that the former team enjoys. The article, therefore, is a good source of the depiction of social psychology in the media. It is the concept of social psychology that explains social behavior.

The information provided by Zhengs article almost accurately captures the concept of social psychology that can be used to explain human behavior. As they interact in social settings, human beings tend to be influenced by the prevailing circumstances (McDougall). From Zhengs article, it is clear that crowds have a major influence on the psychological and behavioral states of the referee, and this may affect their mood, anxiety levels, self-confidence, and efficacy. Although the article does not tackle the aspect of social psychology directly, it provides information that is crucial for future research on the aspect of social psychology and home advantage in sports. The article proves that psychology is an inevitable aspect of peoples' lives in general; thus, the media cannot afford to ignore it.


Works Cited

McDougall, William. An introduction to social psychology. Psychology Press, 2015.

Zheng, Steven. "Home advantage in soccer | The People, Ideas, And Things (PIT) Journal." N.p., 2015. Web. Available at Accessed November 5, 2017.


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