In the early 1960’s, Yale psychologist Stanley Milgram devised a series of experiments to test a person’s willingness to obey orders from an “experimenter.” He wanted to see how far the subject would go in delivering electric shocks to another individual. The whole experiment was a fake; electric shocks weren’t being sent. But the subjects didn’t know that. Milgram classified his subjects into two categories, obedient and disobedient, where about 65% of all of them were obedient, and some even went to the highest level of shocks, 450 volts.
But our guest tonight, UW-Madison PhD. candidate in sociology Matthew Hollander, has a new take on the results, where most, even those classified as obedient, tried to some degree to resist the orders to shock.
Here are several links if you are interested in finding more information on the Milgram experiments:
— Wikipedia has a very comprehensive description of the experiments.
— Simply Psychology webpage is more basic, but does have a short video that includes one person participating and resisting.
— Web Citation has a page where social psychologist Philip Zimbardo provides his view on Milgram.
Now, listen to the entire interview between PNM’s Dennis Shaffer and Matt: