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Project 2 - 1 Lisa Magnuson WRT 105 section 0005 Imagine...

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Lisa Magnuson WRT 105 section 0005 2/21/08 Imagine yourself in a situation where you were being told to do something that would ultimately harm another human being. Would you obey and carry out the task or would you speak up and defend what you thought was right? In the article “The Perils of Obedience” Stanley Milgram explains his findings after conducting an experiment to test a person’s obedience to authority. The experiment took place during the end of the Nuremberg War Crimes trials, which greatly influenced Milgram to conduct the experiment in the first place. People were looking for answers as to why a human being would harm another, and he sought out to find them. Milgram’s theory was that “all people harbor deeply aggressive instincts continually pressing for expression” (320). The experiment consisted of a teacher (subject), a learner, and an experimenter. The teachers were told it was a study to see the effects of punishment on learning and the learners were all actors who were told how to react to the experiment beforehand. The subjects had to administer shocks of increasing volts if the learner could not recite the correct word pair. Many subjects became hesitant once the actors began responding in pain with the given voltage, but the experimenter insisted that they must continue. As the experiment went on and the voltage got higher,
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