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The Psychology Thread:

Euo will do!
A Terry Pratchett quote for you that sums it up, "There are hardly any excesses of the most crazed psychopath that cannot easily be duplicated by a normal, kindly family man who just comes in to work every day and has a job to do."

You can find it on Punch Clock Villain. Desensitisation and dehumanisation: it's frighteningly easy to trigger. I'll bring up the Stanford prison experiment, again. Also, the other classic: the Milgram experiment. If you want something more modern: compare and contrast with what occurred in Abu Ghraib. Most of the perpetrators there? Family guys, very normal outside the job. And, normal doing it... if you don't take full notice what the job actually entailed. After all, torture is a task that can be broken down into steps you have to do between coffee breaks.

There is always a cost, though. <_< Eventually, putting walls up like that takes a toll: but, you don't have to be "insane" to do horrible things that, in time, tip you into having diagnosable mental problems. The stress of doing that? Is what'll do it. But, it takes time. And, some people get used to it for very long periods before the price lands on the mat. Worse, others never get the bill, if they've managed to rationalise it sufficiently.

There is no clear line between "sane" and "insane". And, you can find insanity in sanity... and sanity in insanity. Sorry, mate. But, that's just the way it is.

edited 8th Feb '14 10:20:22 AM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
Are there any examples of experiments similar to the Stanford prison experiment that have a wider range of participants? Because all the examples provided seem to be mostly middle aged white men. Is it fair to base the entire human population on that subset?

 278 demarquis, Sat, 8th Feb '14 10:48:54 AM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
They were college students, and there are virtually no similar studies because the experimental design has since been deemed unethical.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Oops, you're right, I got the age wrong.

Still, it's kind of like assuming that "Lord of the Flies" is a good indicator of the human race and how it'll eventually dissolve into anarchy and chaos, isn't it? The characters in that book were only younger boys. People are inclined to think male = default, but it's really not. Isn't it possible that the group would have been more organized if there had been some girls on the island? And there are several tribes of people that already live on islands similarly and they weren't complete savages on the verge of cannibalism.

Seems less like an indication on what humanity is like in that situation and what groups solely consisting of males are like.

Getting things done
@Euo - No real border between sanity and insanity...that's an interesting point.
Stay awesome, people.
Euo will do!
[up][up]Unfortunately, you've just spotted one of the major problems with experimental psychology for over 60 years: unemployed, middle-aged white men... or white students. <_<

They're usually easier to get hold of when it comes to experiments, so there is a bias that has been accumulating. It's starting to be addressed, that. But, experiments like the Stanford prison and Milgram ones are very unlikely to be repeated as they stand. For very sound ethical reasons.

There are experiments out there, though. Milgram's has been repeated (rather modified) using more than just "white male"(wasn't there something done in Mumbai a few years ago...? <scratches head>). "Young adult" still crops up, though. tongue

But, even though those biases can be found, there is no reason to throw those out: just plenty to start collecting data on wider sets. smile Which is slowly happening.

edited 8th Feb '14 11:11:06 AM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
 282 Tuefel Hunden IV, Sat, 8th Feb '14 11:14:21 AM from Wandering. Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
Watchmen of the Apocalypse
Sorry to bump in. I do recall there being similar experiments as Euo noted that were modified so as to be more ethical.

The Milgrams one had some replications. see this link

I am almost certain the other one has been done as well.

More seen there Some of the modified tests were relatively speaking fairly recent. —-

edited 8th Feb '14 11:34:04 AM by TuefelHundenIV

"Who watches the watchmen?"
 283 demarquis, Sat, 8th Feb '14 2:16:28 PM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
"Psychologists Alex Haslam and Steve Reicher conducted the BBC Prison Study in 2006.[15] This was a partial replication of the Stanford prison experiment..."

Cool!
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Getting things done
Ooh.
Stay awesome, people.
 285 Gabrael, Thu, 6th Mar '14 8:24:18 AM from My musings Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
2 tons of fun!
So I got sent to the dean already.

In my Business and Industry Psych class, the professor was dicussing the door in the face technique and according to Chaldini, it falls as a part of the reciprocal property.

I was confused and asked how could it be reciprocity if the person being asked isn't giving anything.

"Because by the asker making a concession of a smaller request, the person he is asking has the social pressure to reciprocate that and accept it."

"Do you realize the implications of that aren't very comfortable?"

"What do you mean?"

"Well, if a guy asks me for sex and I say no, then follows it with a request for a blow job, by that logic I should feel obligated to give it to him."

Yeah....

Upon death, I want to be cremated and blown in the face of my enemies.
 286 De Marquis, Thu, 6th Mar '14 1:32:01 PM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
[lol][lol][lol] Tell me you didnt really say that!

Bear in mind, though, that your professor was right. Compliance tactics are descriptions of how people actually behave, not prescriptions of how they should behave. You learn them so that you wont fall victim to one.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Getting things done
[up][up] [lol][tup]
Stay awesome, people.
 288 Gabrael, Thu, 6th Mar '14 2:09:02 PM from My musings Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
2 tons of fun!
Yes, I did. I didn't think anything of it but my prof looked like he was about to bust a blood vessel.

The problem with this is the guy at the bar is trying to sale himself just as strong as the car dealer. And more people are going to get in that situation than a salesmen trying to bully you into buying things you don't need.

Plus, this is psych....you should be able to not only talk about sex but also cross apply situations.
Upon death, I want to be cremated and blown in the face of my enemies.
Getting things done
Never thought about it that way. That's a very interesting perspective.
Stay awesome, people.
 290 Zendervai, Thu, 6th Mar '14 3:09:57 PM from North Toronto Relationship Status: Waiting for Prince Charming
Eccentric Dreamer
Oh, that reminds me of something funny.

My professor told the class that in her first year teaching, she got two of the weeks mixed up in the syllabus. So when the students came in expecting to learn about child psychology, Salt N' Pepa's "Let's Talk About Sex" was playing. Everyone was horrified until the professor explained that she thought it was the week that talked about sexual disorders.
Everyone is a little bit insane. It makes the world so much more interesting!
Getting things done
That's very funny in a morbid way.
Stay awesome, people.
Formerly G.G.
I asked in the Writer's Block forum but I think it is valid:

In the "The Departed" there was a quote from one of the police chief's where he says, "We deal in deception here but what we don't deal is self-deception." This kind of bothers me, I know in their line of work deception and half truths is a necessity but is self deception that bad of thing?
"Humans haven't changed since my days in the temple.

How foolish and self-centered you are! Now, namusan ―― !"
Euo will do!
[up]Yes-no. You could argue that habits are a form of self-deception put on automatic. Now, a habit can be self-destructive, neutral... or a good one. Heck, even a "good" habit in the wrong situation is a bad idea: muscle memory that works when you're typing on one keyboard layout will sink you on another.

Same goes for delusions or deceptions. <_< The problem is when the delusion is so vastly different from what others experience or reality as it is, that it gets harmful. Both for you and those around you.
"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
 294 De Marquis, Fri, 28th Mar '14 7:05:17 AM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
I saw the departed but I dont remember that line. Is he referring to undercover work? If so, then the last thing an undercover cop would want to do is self-deceive, lest they become the mask.
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Euo will do!
[up]Uh. Quite a bit of self-deception is actually a part of the package. Unfortunately. <_< "What I'm doing is kind of wrong, but I'm doing it for the right reasons and to find bigger wrongs!"

That little line can save your mental health bacon in undercover work. Or undermine you quite thoroughly. <_< Sometimes: both.

edited 28th Mar '14 7:10:14 AM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
 296 De Marquis, Fri, 28th Mar '14 7:19:12 AM from Hell, USA Relationship Status: Buried in snow, waiting for spring
Who Am I?
Wait, what's deceptive about that? Isnt it true?
“Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Euo will do!
[up]For an absurdly given amount of "true". It is only as true as it can be when you don't step over the line and do something Really Bad in the name of Good. <_<

Take the Stephen Lawrence mess: the bungled investigation was bad enough, but the undercover officers probably were fully convinced that everything they were doing against the family was fully justified, above board and not worrying in the slightest. Wrong. Or, how about all those in the NSA convinced that what they're doing is fundamentally important to the security of the US? Whatever corners they cut doing it. -_- The line between "self-preserving" and "self-serving" is a thin one.

See what I mean? Even a good thing can be bad. And, visa versa. That's the thing about self-administered and insulated cognitive therapy.

edited 28th Mar '14 7:39:37 AM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
But that's just your opinion of what is good and bad. The NSA guys might genuinely think it's good what they do. No deception necessary.

Euo will do!
...When you're shredding paperwork and hiding things very deliberately from people who are supposed to hold authority over you... on some level, you know darned well that you're pretending to yourself, let alone them.
"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
 300 Madrugada, Fri, 28th Mar '14 9:13:51 AM Relationship Status: In season
Zzzzzzzzzz
It's quite possible to believe completely that you are right and the people who don't want you doing whatever it is are wrong. Like Anti said; self-deception is not necessarily present.
...if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you for it.
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