Questioning authority: new perspectives on Milgram's 'obedience' research and its implications for intergroup relations

Haslam, S. Alexander, Reicher, Stephen D. and Birney, Megan E. (2016) Questioning authority: new perspectives on Milgram's 'obedience' research and its implications for intergroup relations. Current Opinion in Psychology, 11 6-9. doi:10.1016/j.copsyc.2016.03.007


Author Haslam, S. Alexander
Reicher, Stephen D.
Birney, Megan E.
Title Questioning authority: new perspectives on Milgram's 'obedience' research and its implications for intergroup relations
Journal name Current Opinion in Psychology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2352-250X
2352-2518
Publication date 2016-10-01
Year available 2016
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1016/j.copsyc.2016.03.007
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 11
Start page 6
End page 9
Total pages 4
Place of publication Kidlington, Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Elsevier
Collection year 2017
Language eng
Abstract Traditionally, Milgram's 'obedience' studies have been used to propose that 'ordinary people' are capable of inflicting great harm on outgroup members because they are predisposed to follow orders. According to this account, people focus so much on being good followers that they become unaware of the consequences of their actions. Atrocity is thus seen to derive from inattention. However recent work in psychology, together with historical reassessments of Nazi perpetrators, questions this analysis. In particular, forensic re-examination of Milgram's own findings, allied to new psychological and historical research, supports an 'engaged follower' analysis in which the behaviour of perpetrators is understood to derive from identification with, and commitment to, an ingroup cause that is believed to be noble and worthwhile.
Keyword Obedience
Milgram
Engaged follower
Ordinary people
Ingroup cause
Review
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Psychology Publications
 
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