This article discusses the social, community, national, and international psychological implications of the great energy and movement in our country after the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. To determine ways that applied psychologists can have a positive effect on the crisis, Kurt Lewin's (1948; 1951) concept of locomotion at community and national levels is used to discuss the need for interventions that will produce driving factors to continue movement toward positive helping behaviors, and restraining factors when this momentum leads to potentially dangerous responses to the conflict (e.g., group think, an overextended enthusiasm for war, a sense of psychological immediacy or nonimmediacy for victims, and prejudice against Muslim individuals). The author offers ten approaches that applied psychologists could use to drive, restrain, and guide locomotion in this and similar crises both in the United States and abroad.
Analyses of Social Issues & Public Policy – Wiley
Published: Dec 1, 2002