The Perils of Obedience

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ARTICLE CRITIQUE ON THE PERILS OF OBEDIENCE In Stanley Milgram’s article The Perils of Obedience, Milgram designs an experiment to understand how strong a person’s tendency to obey authority, even though it’s immoral or destructive. Milgram said that most of the ordinary people follow obedience to authority in today’s society, whom often abandons their own ideas and beliefs. The Holocaust is an example of this. The Germans were told by Hitler to kill the Jews, they dismissed their own morals and obeyed Hitler’s commands. However, he made conclusions that were beyond the scope of the study and lacked further validation. Milgram bases his experiment on two people: The teacher is the subject of the experiment, who is made to believe the electrical shocks are real. The learner is actually an actor who is strapped to a harmless electric chair. They came to the lab to see how far someone will go while causing someone else in pain just because they were told to do so by a superior. However, they were not told that it was they, the subjects, who will be experimented on. The learner is given a list of word pairs and has to memorize them. Then the learner has to remember the second word of the pair once the learner hears the first word. If the learner gives the incorrect answer then the teacher will shock him with electricity until he gets it right. Each time the learner is wrong the shock will get stronger. In reality, the learner receives no shock because he is just pretending to be in pain so the teachers will stop. In most cases the teachers continues to increase the voltage up to 450 volts to the learner even though the learner refuses the answer the question. Milgram's experiment was set up to determine how people in a psychology laboratory would react to authority. Since more than half of the subjects in the first experiment administered the shock to the end,

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