PAPER # 1: BREAKING A NORM
NAME: Nisha Tommy
A norm is a principle of right action binding upon the members of a group and serving to guide, control, or regulates proper and acceptable behavior. Social norms are group-held beliefs about how members should behave in a given context. Sociologists describe norms as informal understandings that govern society’s behaviors, while psychologists have adopted a more general definition, recognizing smaller group units, like a team or an office, may also endorse norms separate or in addition to cultural or societal expectations. The psychological definition emphasizes social norms' behavioral component, stating norms have two dimensions: how much behavior is exhibited and how much the group approves of that behavior. The people living in the society develop social norms. These norms have its importance and pay a vital role in the socialization of an individual and molding of personality. There are some important functions of social norms, which play essential part in the smooth of the society. These are control behavior, harmonize the society, and law and order. I chose to violate a social norm when riding on the elevator. I did this in a hospital environment where doctors, nurses, technicians, and mostly patients were around me. I monitored the reaction of ten different groups throughout the experiment to get the best result. It is included different nationality and different age group. I rode the elevator ten times but instead of standing the “normal” way which is facing the door an unspoken social norm I stood the wrong way standing by the door looking at the back of the elevator. I felt very uncomfortable for the first few times but, after that I started enjoying people’s nonverbal reactions. Still it is hard to break a norm by knowingly breaking it. I got various reactions. Some people stare at me as if I was not normal. Some rolled their eyes and others startled their forehead. Some of them...
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