[Cyborg] Stanford Prison Experiment followup

Mitch Altman maltman23 at hotmail.com
Thu Jul 14 13:53:17 PDT 2011


> From: tedks at riseup.net
> To: cyborg at lists.noisebridge.net
> Date: Thu, 14 Jul 2011 10:36:05 -0400
> Subject: Re: [Cyborg] Stanford Prison Experiment followup
> 
> > On Thu, 2011-07-14 at 08:22 -0400, Eric Boyd wrote:
> > http://www.stanfordalumni.org/news/magazine/2011/julaug/features/spe.html
> > 
> > It's amazing how different the different participants stories are 
> > compared to the standard story.  I think especially telling is the one 
> > guard who says he planned what came over him - he lead the efforts of 
> > the guards to break down the prisoners.  It strikes me that without him, 
> > the entire experiment may have turned out quite differently.  How would 
> > the world be different if the Stanford Prison Experiment had resulted in 
> > people playing guitars happily for 2 weeks?
> > 
> > Eric
 
> I'm sure he took that account from his journal, where he wrote down his
> plan before participating in the experiment and got it dated and
notarized.
 
> If the Stanford Prison Experiment was people playing guitars happily for
> two weeks, people would deny that situations have stronger effects on
> people's behaviors than static personality traits. This is quite
> different from today, where people deny that situations have stronger
> effects on people's behaviors than static personality traits, and
> there's a lot of empirical evidence to back up that claim, like the
> Milgram studies, the Stanford Prison Experiments, the Robber's Cave
> experiment, Asch's line study, and every study on correspondence
> bias/fundamental attribution error, to name a few.
 
> </rant> There was also a follow up study in Poland, with the same results -- they called off the experiment when things got out of hand.  That there are people who organize others in abusive behavior punctuates the outcome even more:  we all have within us the ability to be abusive -- given the right (or wrong) circumstances.  This is good to know.  We have more choice to respond, rather than react (or to choose to go along with others, or not), when we are more conscious of ourselves. Mitch.  		 	   		  
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