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The Psychology Book by

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RG

IN CONTEXT

APPROACH

Conformism

BEFORE

1939–45 During World War II, approximately six million Jews are systematically killed on the orders of Nazi Germany.

1950 Solomon Asch demonstrates the power of social pressure to make people conform in his line-task experiments.

1961 Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann is tried, and claims he was just “following orders.”

AFTER

1971 Philip Zimbardo conducts his prison experiment, which demonstrates that in certain situations, otherwise good people can perform evil deeds.

1989 American psychologists Herbert Kelman and V.L. Hamilton state that members of a group obey authority when they accept its legitimacy.

Social psychologist ...

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