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Philip Zimbardo Essay Topics & Paper Examples

Explain the Impact of the Stanford Prison Experiment on Psychology and Behaviour

The Stanford prison experiment ,led by professor Philip Zimbardo, was aimed at seeing the effect on people on becoming prisoners or prison guards. The idea was to see what happens to people when they are put in relatively ‘evil’ places. Do the people themselves become evil or is there no net effect? The results indicated that in fact people adapt to their role exceptionally well. It was observed that the prison guards became overly tyrannical to the level of sadism. In consequence the prisoners were seen to be under severe stress to the extent that they became crazy or depressed. 24 volunteers were selected that had no psychological problems, health issues or any past crime accounts. They were brought to…

Contesting the “nature” of Conformity: What Milgram and Zimbardo’s Studies Really Show.

From the 1960’s to the 1970’s understanding of the psychology of tyranny is dominated by classical studies. Two such studies include Zimbardo’s Stanford Prison Experiment and Milgram’s research on obedience to authority. This research has revealed that many times people obey inactively and unthinkably to both roles that authorities offer as well as orders given to them. However, recently, this belief has recently been tested by empirical work informed by social identity theorizing. What this means is that individuals’ willingness to obey and follow such authorities is conditional on the certainty that the authority is correct and the credentials of the authority. In relation to this article, there are two basic sources of influence when it comes to conformity. First,…

Ethical Issues in Social Research

Why is inflicting no harm to participants an important ethical issue when performing social research? Describe the importance of no harm to participants as an ethical issue. Give examples to illustrate the difficulties with this issue. Examples from the book that had difficulties with ethics include the Milgram experiment, the Stanford Prison experiment, and the syphilis experiment. These experiments were done in the name of science but had a lasting impact on the participants. In the listed examples, the institutions that sponsored these experiments were not looking to harm the participants, they were simply trying to understand the social world around them; however, in every situation in life, work, extracurricular activities, etc., a cost and benefits analysis must be conducted….