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Summary Of The Zimbardo's Prison Experiment

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The Zimbardo’s prison experiment, also known as the Stanford Prison Experiment, main purpose was to investigate the influence of situational factors on behavior (Brady & Logsdon, 705). This ‘constructed situation’ involved young, male volunteers being cast in the dichotomized roles of guard and prisoner in a simulated prison environment (Bottoms, 163). The experiment was use to see if brutality truly existed between the guards and the prisoners. The findings were quite upsetting. The young males went through an ordeal that eventually lead to psychological abuse. The young adults were treated like actual criminals, even arrested at their own homes. They were later brought into the pretend jail and booked. Many individuals would assume by working…show more content…
Some of the prisoners’ started acting irrationally and they started telling lies on each other and some even started siding with the guards. Witnessing this type of behavior was quite strange I couldn’t understand why the prisoners would tell lies on each other. Perhaps the prisoners felt by doing this they would no longer receive such harsh punishment but that wasn’t the case at all. The prisoners did whatever it took to please the guards. The more submissive the prisoners became the more hostile the guards’ behavior got. The prisoners took the abused over and over. The guards wanted complete control over the prisoners but that type of behavior didn’t last long at all. After thirty six or so hours some of the prisoners showed signs of severe psychosomatic disturbance and had to be released shortly after (Brady & Logsdon, 706). A few hours later a few prisoners retaliated and blocked themselves into their cells. It would appear that the prisoners got tired of the harassment and therefore acted out. The guards took back control of the situation and detained the so called ringleaders. The agitators were placed in solitary confinement and shortly after the prisoners’ behavior changed dramatically. One prisoner became absolutely hostile and started screaming uncontrollable. Perhaps because the prisoner was isolated he became anxious and was unable to control his unnecessary outburst. To me solitary confinement is a form of psychological torture. All alone in a room all that is left to do is to go crazy and that’s exactly what happened to the prisoners. The prisoners’ conditions were too severe that they had to be released. The experiment was designed to last for two weeks but after six short days the experiment was terminated (Brady & Logsdon,
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