Stanford Prison Experiment Essay

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Taylor Denise Belle February 22, 2012 000743067 The Stanford Prison Experiment The Stanford Prison Experiment was an experiment conducted by Philip Zimbardo in 1971. The purpose of the experiment was to see how the subjects, normal people, would respond psychologically to the roles of prisoner and guard. The experiment was supposed to last for two weeks, with the participants getting $15/day. However, the experiment had to be cut short because of how extreme the conditions began to be. While watching the Stanford Prison Experiment video, I came to find that the prisoners didn’t show much loyalty to each other after a while. At first, during the second day of the experiment, the prisoners joined together with rebellion by putting the rails of their beds against the door. Prisoner 819 that started the rebellion was put in the solitary confinement room they called “the hole”, while the remaining prisoners were punished for what that prisoner did. After a while they stopped rebelling with each other because the guards punishments became more intense. It became every prisoner for himself. At the beginning of the video I believed that the prisoner would band together against the guards. When I continue watching the story became different. The prisoners punished other prisoners who did not conform to the wishes of the guards. For example, prisoner “819”came in as an alternate. He eventually became exposed to the harsh punishment and abuse of the guards. Prisoner “416” went on a hunger strike. For every day that prisoner “819” did not eat the other prisoners were punished. Eventually he went to “hole” where he sat for days. The other prisoners were shouting “416 did a bad thing.” The guards made the prisoners show anger toward the actions of “416” by kicking his door and screaming at him. I did notice, however, that through out the video even though the

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