The Deindividuation of Society
Since the beginning of time, mankind has advanced as a society of many; each person and individual a piece in the great machine that is time. This unity, this joining of forces, has driven mankind forward throughout the dark ages of humanity’s past and into the modern world people live in today. Much has changed with the passing of time, but what has not changed is humanity’s primal instinct to create allies and forge relationships to stand united against the forces that would oppose them. This bond is essential to the structure of society and is the foundation on which culture is built, making this “Deindividuation” of society all the more disturbing. This rapidly growing problem can be linked as a source of increased crime rate, dangerous hive-mind behavior, and large-scale social destabilization.
Deindividuation is, in essence, the apparent loss of individualism and individual accountability that can take place when someone participates as part of a crowd or group. It can cause an individual to be more likely to donate more to charity, but also be the source behind them to being more likely to engage in mob-like violent behavior. There are many examples in which the effects of deindividuation can be seen in real-world situations. Deindividuation can take place in a plethora of situations such as the police, the armed forces, sports teams, cults, gangs, and social organizations. Although the groups may seem very dissimilar on the exterior, these groups share many qualities that make them encouraging to, and even reliant on, deindividuation. All of the examples share a concentrated focus on group cohesiveness. Sports teams, police officers, and the military all wear uniforms that produce a distinctive “in-group”, while eradicating the individual disparity of personal fashion. Men in the armed forces are even forced to shave their heads in order to better unify their appearance....