The Bystander Effect Theory

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The Bystander Effect: A Result of a Human Drive Repetitive cries and screams for help were heard in Kew Gardens, New York on the Friday night of March 13th in 1964. As the 28-year-old Kitty Genovese was approaching her doorstep, an attacker –Winston Moseley- came from behind and started to stab her repeatedly. Despite her loud calls for help, turning on the bedroom lights along the neighborhood is all what her calls were capable of. None of the thirty nearby neighbors wanted to go under the spotlight of answering the call of duty so it wasn’t before 20 minutes when the anonymous hero that lived next door decided to call the police. It was four years later when our victim’s story became the perfect example to explain the social psychological…show more content…
For example, when a bystander witnesses a child being abused or an old man being pushed and does not offer any means of help when the situation involves other people around, we can form a strong argument that the bystander has a lack of stability and personal security, which are the basic elements for passing the ‘safety and security needs’ tier; therefore, it can be said that according to Maslow’s (1943) theory ,the bystanders have a human strive for safety and security due to the fact that they do not have the basic required traits to pass this stage properly in the pyramidic…show more content…
According to Maslow’s Theory of Human Motivation, the human’s actions are based upon a descending hierarchy of five tiers of needs; physiological needs, safety and security needs, love and belongingness needs, self-esteem needs and self-actualization needs respectively. We can notice a connection between the bystander’s action and the lack of fulfilment of their ‘safety and security needs’ according to the model by observing the bystander’s actions that consist of joining the observing crowd and giving their social responsibility to others due to their ‘diffusion of responsibility’ type of thinking; therefore, we are able to notice that the probability of help is related to the number of bystanders inversely according to Darley and Latane’s research. The solution that the research has found for the victim in an emergency would be to make a specific pressure-implying call to a certain bystander that would clear his diffusion. And as a result, more of the bystanders who are high on their safety and security level will
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