“I was beginning to feel related to the battered Bobo doll,” he wrote.
In the end, his work caught on, and his insights become even more relevant in a world where social media and a 24-hour news cycle for models of violence have a much wider reach.
The Bobo puppet experiment became an integral part of psychology classes around the world. People sent bobo dolls to Dr. Bandura, asked for autographs and knocked on his office door in Stanford’s Jordan Hall, hoping to be photographed with the famous psychologist.
In a 2018 interview for this obituary, Dr. Bandura, he once received an email from some high school students.
“Professor Bandura,” they wrote, “we have a big argument in our class and you are the only one who can answer it: Professor Bandura, are you still alive?”
He wrote back to the students: “This email is being sent from the other side. We have emails there, but not Facebook. “
Albert Bandura was born on December 4, 1925 in the Prairie town of Mundare, about 80 kilometers east of Edmonton, Alberta. Like most of the 400 inhabitants of the settlement, his parents were immigrants from Eastern Europe, his father from Krakow, Poland, and his mother from Ukraine. His father, Joseph Bandura, laid tracks for the Trans-Canada Railroad and turned a heavily wooded homestead into a working farm. His mother, Justyna (Berezanski) Bandura, ran a delivery service and transported goods from the train station to the store.
During the summer months, Dr. Bandura ran his father on the farm or worked in other manual jobs. When he was seven, one of his many siblings died and his parents, concerned about the sad atmosphere in the house, sent him for a year to the oldest of his five older sisters, a teacher in Mundare’s only schoolhouse. The city’s lack of educational resources forced him to undertake his own school education and taught him a valuable skill.