Obedience Depicted in Various Movies

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Obedience comes from a lot of different places and people. Obedience can even change the way people think or change someone’s behavior. The Stanford Prison Experiment, the movie A Few Men, and the Milgram Experiment all are good examples of Obedience.

The Stanford Prison Experiment was an experiment by a person named Philip Zimbardo. The experiment consists of about twenty-one guys which were college students and they did the experiment over the summer while they weren’t in school. Ten of them were prisoners and eleven were the guards. The experiment was to see how an individual’s behavior would change depending on the environment and interactions. The prisoners were treated like real criminals. They were picked up from their houses and blindfolded and driven to the psychology department of Stanford University. Zimbardo had the basement set up as a prison with barred doors and small cells. When the guards got the prisoners to the place they had them stripped and had all of their personal belongings removed and locked away. They were given a prisoner uniform with a number on it and the number is what they were to go by. Zimbardo wanted the use of ID numbers so it would make the prisoners feel anonymous. The guards were to maintain order however they felt was necessary but physical violence was permitted. The guards started to fit their roles and they did it fast but the prisoners, on the other hand, were still treating it like an experiment and not something real. They took it kind of like a game. When the prisoners started to disobey the guards and not listen to them, they would get harassed by the guards. The prisoners would soon start to break down and have mental breakdowns. This experiment did ruin some of the prisoner’s lives. This experiment was a very good example of obedience it showed how they took authority. It also showed how their behaviors had changed based on how they were treated.

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The Milgram Experiment was a very famous experiment by Stanley Milgram. He was a psychologist at Yale University. The experiment was focused on the fight between obedience to authority and personal conscience. Milgram wanted to see how far people would go in obeying instructions if it hurts another person. His participants were 40 males between the ages of twenty and fifty. The participant would ask the learner which is one of Milgram’s helpers a question. Milgram’s helper was Mr. Wallace. Wallace will answer the question wrong every time to see how high the participant would shock in volts. Wallace is safe though he was never attached to anything he just acted it out like it was real which was his job. Every time the learner would get the question wrong the participant is told to shock him. The volts range from 15 which is a slight shock to 450 which a severe shock. If the participant didn’t want to shock the learner he would be told four prods which are “Prod 1: Please Continue. Prod 2: The experiment requires you to continue. Prod 3: You must continue. Prod 4: You have no other choice but to continue.” This is to show the participant some authority and see if they obey or not. The results say that 65% of them continued to the highest level which is 450 volts. All the others just continued to 300 volts. This experiment showed that people are very likely to listen and obey orders by someone with some type of authority. Milgram says that “People tend to obey orders from other people if they recognize their authority as morally right and/or legally based.” We will obey authority though because that is what most of us were taught and brought up to learn was to obey authority.

There is a movie called A Few Good Men. This movie is a great example of obedience.  

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