Public Announcement We Will Pay You $4.00 For One Hour of Your Time Persons Needed for a Study of Memory We will pay five hundred New Haven men to help us complete a scientific study of memory and learning. The study is being at Yale University.
We Will Pay You $4.00 For One Hour of Your Time
Persons Needed for a Study of Memory
We will pay five hundred New Haven men to help us complete a scientific study of memory and learning. The study is being at Yale University.
Each person who participates will be paid $4.00 (plus 50 cents carfare) for approximately one hour’s time. We need you for only one hour there are no further obligations. You may choose the time you would like to come (evenings, weekends, or weekdays). No special training, education, or experience is needed. We want:
Factory workers Businessmen Construction workers
City employees Clerks Salespeople
Laborers Professionals White-collar workers
Barbers Telephone worker Others
All persons must be between the ages of 20 & 50. High school and college students cannot be used.
Source: Adapted From Obedience to Authority: An Experimental View, 1974, by Stanley Milgram.
Generator volts ranged form 15 to 450 (XXX Danger)
Participants given a sample shock of 45 volts
"Before the experiments, I sought predictions about the outcome from various kinds of people -- psychiatrists, college sophomores, middle-class adults, graduate students and faculty in the behavioral sciences. With remarkable similarity, they predicted that virtually all the subjects would refuse to obey the experimenter. The psychiatrist, specifically, predicted that most subjects would not go beyond 150 volts, when the victim makes his first explicit demand to be freed. They expected that only 4 percent would reach 300 volts, and that only a pathological fringe of about one in a thousand would administer the highest shock on the board". (Milgram, 1974)
Basic Arrangement of Milgram's Studies
Milgram Experiment (setup
for experiments 17 & 18
Peer Subject Peer
Excerpt from Milgram Experiment
With numbing regularity good people were seen to knuckle under the demands of authority and perform actions that were callous and severe. Men who are in everyday life responsible and decent were seduced by the trappings of authority, by the control of their perceptions, and by the uncritical acceptance of the experimenter's definition of the situation, into performing harsh acts. …A substantial proportion of people do what they are told to do, irrespective of the content of the act and without limitations of conscience, so long as they perceive that the command comes from a legitimate authority (Milgram, 1965).
“IT IS SURPRISING HOW DIFFICULT IT IS FOR PEOPLE TO KEEP SITUATIONAL FORCES IN MIND, AS THEY SEEK A TOTALLY PERSONALISTIC INTERPRETATION OF OBEDIENCE, DIVORCED FROM THE SPECIFIC SITUATIONAL PRESSURES ACTING ON THE INDIVIDUAL” (MILGRAM, 1974).
…The social psychology of this century reveals a major lesson: often it is not so much the kind of person a man is as the kind of situation in which he finds himself that determines how he will act. (Milgram, 1974)
“ANY INTERPRETATION INVOLVING THE ATTACKER’S STRONG SADISTIC IMPULSES IS INADEQUATE. THERE IS NO EVIDENCE THAT THE MAJORITY OF THOSE WHO PARTICIPATED IN SUCH KILLINGS IS SADISTTICALLY INCLINED” (KELMAN, & HAMILTON, 1989, p.13, REGARDING THE MY LAI MASSACRE)
Methodology (initial study) ---
No manipulated variables
No control condition
No theoretically derived hypotheses
No specific predictions [Paper rejected twice; JPSP and Journal of Personality]
ADDITIONAL FACTORS AFFECTING
• SENSE OF URGENCY (TIME PRESSURE)
• NO COMMUNICATION
• STEP BY STEP INCREASES IN SHOCK LEVELS
• STATE OF “AGENCY” (OTHERS ARE RESPONSIBLE)
THE 4 PRODS
• PLEASE CONTINUE, OR PLEASE GO ON
• THE EXPERIMENT REQUIRES THAT YOU GO ON
• IT IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL THAT YOU CONTINUE
• YOU HAVE NO OTHER CHOICE, YOU MUST GO ON.
• UNDERSTANDING OF CRITICAL PHENOMENON
• INSIGHT OF PARTICIPANTS
• CRITICISM DUE TO NATURE OF FINDINGS
• EVERY EFFORT TO DEBRIEF (PURPOSE OF STUDY, FOLLOW-UP
REPORT & QUESTIONNAIRE, PSYCHIATRIC INTERVIEW 1 YEAR LATER)
• RESULTS WERE UNEXPECTED
• NO HARM TO PARTICIPANTS (ESPECIALLY LONG-TERM; MANY WOULD
DO IT AGAIN)
Table 2.2 Studies of destructive obedience to authority
Milgram (1963) USAMale general population 65
Female general population 65
Rosenhan (in Milgram, 1974) USAStudents 85
Ancona and Pareyson (1968) ItalyStudents 85
Mantell (1971) Germany Male general population 85
Kilham and Mann (1974) Australia Male students 40
Female students 16
Burley and McGuiness (1977) UK Male students 50
Shanab and Yahya (1978) Jordan Students 62
Miranda et al. (1981) Spain Students > 90
Schurz (1985) Austria General population 80
Meeus and Raaijmakers (1986) Holland General population 92
Written description given to 12 nurses. They were asked how they would act.