The Importance Of Group Thinking

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Groups If all of your friends jumped off of a cliff, would you jump too? The age-old creed of chastising mothers everywhere highlights the dynamic of a group, the group mind, and the effect it can have on the individual behaviors thought processes. While the concept is highly praised and sought after, individuality is simply an illusion that we live in in order to facilitate a facade of being special and unique. As a society, we need to accept the reality that we are not unique, but are simply pawns in larger clique constructions. In a world where everyone is included in some type of group, it becomes increasingly important to not only understand the impact group thinking can have on you, but also to understand how to think as an individual. …show more content…

In fact, it is impossible to escape the group dynamic. Your family, your profession, your economic standing, your environment, and even your gender places you in a group with peers who share something in common with you. Even if you attempt to rebel against your “group” it just places you into another subgroup with a similar system of group thinking and a similar group mind. Psychoanalyst Erich Fromm said, “ The organization of man has lost the capacity to disobey, he is not even aware of the fact that he obeys.” (578) We obey the thinking and constraints of the group mind, whether or not we are conscious of the sheep-like obedience to the ideas percolating within the group dynamic and the collective group mind. The concept of a “group mind” permeates our society; generally, under a fairly positive connotation with an aim of progressing ideas and combining individual ways of thinking to better the group. Projects are done in groups, groups are assigned to perform tasks together, and …show more content…

Not compliance to an authority figure, but rather to the popular opinion. The group dynamic facilitates a sense of authority that must be obeyed. This form of herd mentality can be dangerous not only to the individual and the group, but also to the surrounding communities. Because fitting in with the crowd rather than doing what you perceive to be right is often times more safe and attractive to the individual, they commonly obey the “authority” of the group. There have been patterns all throughout history that epitomize the principle of herd mentality. There have been churches, political parties, families, and countless other socially structured groups that have used their power of the majority and the strong to sway the individuality and convictions of others. Group members have even forgone their own ideas and morals in order to protect themselves from expulsion from the group, and potential persecution for dismissing the general authority and power of the group. Solomon Asch of Rutgers University concluded of group mentality: “ The tendency to conformity in our society is so strong that reasonably intelligent and well-meaning young people are willing to call white black is a matter of concern.” ( Asch 602). He is saying that despite education, intention, and background, people will follow the group consensus most of the time, and that our propensity to accommodate the

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