Obedience Summary

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Obedience Summary
Stanley Milgrams experiments are some of the most recognized behavior experiments in psychology today. Milgrams most known experiment was ‘shocking’ to people and has also been controversial ethically. As Ian Parker stated it would “make his name and destroy his reputation.” Parkers Obedience essay talks much of Milgrams life before the experiment and how the psychology community thought about his ethics. Parker talks of Milgram struggling to place his findings in a scientific context until he put them in a place to make sense of the Holocaust. While always using the Holocaust as context for his experiments he often compared his work to Adolf Eichmann’s who was put on trial in Jerusalem in 1961. Milgram published his first obedience paper in 1963 where he placed Eichmann’s name in the first paragraph, giving the paper a place in the debate. Milgram argued that ordinary people committed acts in the Holocaust because they were given orders to. Because of this normal American people could commit the acts the Nazis did if they were told to. “Once the Holocaust connection was in place the experiments took a larger than life quality,” said leading Milgram scholar Arthur G Miller. Before Milgram could publish his first book about his obedience experiment it found its way onto many medias from the New York Times, Life, ABC television, and the British Press. As the experiment became more celebrated one question continued to come up ‘had Milgram mistreated his subjects?’ Some psychologists, including Alan Elms and Bruno Bettelheim, think so after some of Milgrams subjects talked about having heart attacks and others talked about joining group therapy after the experiment. Since those reports came about the experiment has been attacked by psychologists and many others. “In Milgrams defiance,” says Parker, “Milgram would always highlight the results of post-experimental studies which never showed any traumatic actions. Milgram could never win...
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