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Best Web OpEds    H4'ed 9/10/15

Does Power Corrupt Everyone Equally? Lessons from the Stanford Prison Experiment

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Stanford Prison Experiment
Stanford Prison Experiment
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The standard story, given by the experimenter Phillip Zimbardo, is that the experiment is a lesson about how everyday people (and groups consisting of everyday people), when given too much power, can become sadistic tyrants. In a recent article for The New Yorker, Maria Konnikova casts some doubt on that conclusion, arguing that the real lesson is the power of institutions to shape behavior, and how people are shaped by those preexisting expectations.

While this is certainly a valuable lesson, I believe another crucial variable at play—rarely mentioned by commentators of the prison experiment or even in psychology textbooks—is the person. Yes, power corrupts. But power does not corrupt everyone equally.

Read the rest of the story HERE:

At greatergood.berkeley.edu
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Natylie Baldwin is the author of The View from Moscow: Understanding Russia and U.S.-Russia Relations, available at Amazon. Her writing has appeared in Consortium News, RT, OpEd News, The Globe Post, Antiwar.com, The New York Journal of Books, (more...)

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