27 January 2009

On obedience, nowadays

See also here

So! A researcher has reproduced (almost) the irreproducible!

Stanley Milgram's 1970s experiments on obedience to authority are some of the most famous in the history of psychology, but (as the linked article notes) they also deceived the participants to the extent of inducing persistent psychological disturbance; hence the discipline's attention to ethical clearance nowadays. It had been assumed that this self-imposed barrier would prevent the replication of the experiments, but (as in the case of Zimbardo's simulated prison experiment) it was possible simply to ignore those constraints by not pretending to be subject to academic control.

The linked post (as some of the comments note) simplifies greatly a complex experiment, but the results 35 years on were...

You'll have to read them for yourself to find out!


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