Will Hitler ever go away?
Some things never change. Scientists said on Friday they had replicated an experiment in which people obediently delivered painful shocks to others if encouraged to do so by authority figures.
Seventy percent of volunteers continued to administer electrical shocks – or at least they believed they were doing so – even after an actor claimed they were painful, Jerry Burger of Santa Clara University in California found.
“What we found is validation of the same argument – if you put people into certain situations, they will act in surprising, and maybe often even disturbing, ways,” Burger said.
Burger was replicating a 1961 experiment by Yale University professor Stanley Milgram, in which volunteers were asked to give electric “shocks” to other people if they answered certain questions incorrectly.
Milgram found that, after hearing an actor cry out in pain at 150 volts, 82.5% of participants continued administering shocks, most to the maximum 450 volts. “When you hear the man scream and say, ‘let me out, I can’t stand it,’ that is the point when the real stress that people criticized Milgram for kicked in,” Burger said.
Via The Times