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Terms in this set (30)

• Milgrams goal was to see if their was something unique to Nazi Germany that could explain the Holocaust
• The set up:
o Solicited subjects from New Haven, Connecticut from posting an advertisement in a local newspaper
o 20-50 year old men
o No special training, experience, or education needed
o Had subjects come into the lab for a study about memory/learning
o Participants were randomly assigned the teacher role or the learner role
• The real subjects were always assigned the role of the teacher
• Appears to be random
o The teacher was instructed to test the learner on a number of word pairs
• Learner is supposed to remember what word is paired with another word
• The teacher would then test the learner on the words
o If the learner gets an answer wrong, the administer shocks the learner
o Teacher watches the learner get strapped into an electric chair
o Teacher (the real subject) is brought into another room and sits in front of a shock apparatus
o The learner (actor) pretends to receive shocks
• Grunts and cries increase as shock level increases
• At 180 volts the learner claims he cannot stand the pain anymore
• At 300 volts the learner refuses to answer anymore word pairs
• Teacher is very distressed and wants to stop
• Experimenter keeps telling them it is essential that they continue

What Do Other People Think Would Happen?
• All subjects said they would personally disobey before reaching 140 volts
• Some even said they would not deliver any volts
• Not expected anyone to go past 300 volts
• 1/1000 would reach "XXX"
• How many people administered the XXX shock?

Conditions:

Voice Feed Back Condition:
• The teacher could not see the learner
• But the teacher could hear the learner's cries
• About 65% of participants administered the maximum shock

Remote Feedback Condition:
• The teacher could not hear or see the learner
• But they could hear them pounding on the wall
• 68% people administered the maximum shock
• Slightly more removed from the learner
• Couldn't hear the actors pleas and cries

Proximity Condition:
• The learner and teacher were in the same room

• The learner received the shocks a few feet away from the teacher
• Rates of obedience decrease by 20%
• About 40% are still delivering the shocks at the maximum level

Touch Proximity Condition:
• The teacher was required to force the learner's hand onto the shock plate
o Makes the learners help administer the shocks
• 30% of people administer the shocks at the maximum level


Turning in the Learner:
• These conditions manipulate the salience of the learner
• These conditions made the learner's suffering more prominent
• The teacher tried to do the opposite and actively worked against this
o Teachers tried to block out the learner (actor)
• As the learner became more and more present, the teachers found it difficult to deliever the shocks
o Suggests that it is much easier to hurt people when we cannot see them


• The experimenter gave orders to another shocker condition
o Remove the responsibility of the subject
o The subject gave orders to another shocker
o 90% delivered the maximum shock
No Feedback Condition:
• The teachers don't hear anything
• Don't hear any pounding
• Everyone is obeyed in that condition
• 100% delivered the maximum shock

Experiment-Absent Condition:
• Experimenter was physically removed from the experiment
• The experimenter gave the instructions over the phone
• Decreased the experiment's power
• The teachers were less likely to obey
• 20% of the people administered the maximum shock
• By removing himself from the scene, the experiment lost much of his influence

Ordinary Person Condition:
• Another person was assigned the role of the experimenter
• Ordinary person telling you what to do
• 20% of the people administer the maximum shock
• Less likely to obey
• Needs to be a legitimate authority

Contradictory Experimenters Condition:
• Two experimenters initially instructed the participant to shock the victim
• One experimenter announced that he found the proceedings objectable and argued with the other experimenter
• When another authority figure objects, it is okay for the subject to object
• Not a single person went to the maximum shock

Tuning Out the Experimenter:
• As the experimenter became less salient and less of an authority in the participant's mind, it became easier for the participant to defy him
• The rate of obedience declined

Legitimacy of Experiment:
• To see how participants would react if the experiment were not conducted at Yale, Milgram conducted the experiment in Bridgeport, Connecticut
• There were about the same rates of obedience
• Women
o 65% of women delivered the maximum shock
o No different than men
• Laughing

Situation Matters:
• Obedience studies underscore the importance of situations
• We tend to ignore situational influences
o Fundamental Attribution Error
• It is important to understand the role of the situation so as to help prevent history from repeating itself
• Evil behavior is more likely when people feel less responsible for the act
o Individual responsibility is removed
• Eichmann: I was just the "transmitter" of information
o His defense was that he was just following orders
• Can you claim as your defense that you were just following orders?
o Yes, but it doesn't get you very far
- People are more likely to comply if they are in a good mood
• Positive moods tend to increase rates of compliance
• When we are in a good mood, people and favors are viewed more positively
• Mood maintenance
o We comply with peoples demands and requests even if we don't want to to maintain the good mood we are in
- Negative moods → mixed feelings
o Feelings of guilt may increase rates of compliance (so they can get rid of the bad feeling)
• Study:
o Researchers wanted to look at the role of guilt in charitable giving
o Looked at people before and after church
o Researchers hypothesized that before confession, individuals would feel guilty
o After confession, they have been absolved of their sins and they feel better
o The percentage of participants who donated to March of Dimes
• Pre-confessional →nearly 100% for men and 20% for women
• Post-confessional → rates of charitable giving decreased

• Study:
o The participant begins to feel sad that the experiment was ruined and that it was potentially their fault because they weren't paying attention
o After participants received their paycheck, participants were asked if they wanted to donate money to the charity
o Participants who thought they shocked the rat donated 3x as much money to a charity
• Relieving themselves from being in this negative feeling
- Negative state relief → the idea that people engage in certain actions, such as agreeing with a request, to relieve their negative feelings and feel better about themselves