Presentation on theme: "Conformity Social Psychology Psychologically, we want to understand the world and we want to behave in an effective way."— Presentation transcript:
Conformity Social Psychology Psychologically, we want to understand the world and we want to behave in an effective way.
People conform to social norms A group standard is set, people adjust their attitudes, beliefs and actions to them - Or face consequences –pressure –disapproval –discomfort –rejections This is called conformity
What is Conformity? A change in behavior/belief resulting from real/imagined group pressure –It must be the result of pressure… If the behavior is not the result of pressure, it isn’t conformity –E.g.: Someone in the group tells a joke. Others laugh and then you laugh. Why did you laugh? Because the joke was funny not conformity Because everyone else laughed conformity
Conformity Conformity is at times bad, good or inconsequential (doesn’t really matter if people do it) Examples?
Influenced by others Most of us like to think we are independent, but all of us are influenced by the views and actions of others –Conformists –and Rebels
Informational Social Influence We follow the behaviours and opinions of those we believe have the knowledge to understand the world –We cannot know everything or understand everything, so we rely on experts to help us
Normative Social Influence We conform to receive the rewards that come from being accepted by other people, while avoiding their rejection Read, Solomon Asch’s study (1951, 1954), p. 677
Kinds of Conformity: Compliance Involves publicly acting in a way that you privately disagree with –Due to the pressure you feel to act that way –Or because it is not something you feel is worth fighting over –Or because you may die if you don’t
Kinds of Conformity: Acceptance Involves both acting out AND believing in what we have been pressured to do Again, this can be good and bad
Other reasons we conform- Obedience to Authority Also important in society – we would face chaos without it Authority figures like police, government, teachers, army – we tend to listen when commanded to do so But also can be a bad thing Read, Nuremburg Trials, p. 679 We will come back to this…….
Dissent – Going against the flow Dissent means to go against the majority opinion If people see one person dissenting, they may have the courage to not conform Dissent can be socially isolating – it can also lead to people getting killed
Democracy vs. Dictatorship Generally laws are the will of the people When people don’t believe in a law, the law will change Takes work of dissenters, educators, activists Not always peaceful, sometimes a lot of work Sometimes people go to jail Laws are the will of the dictator Their will needs to be enforced through the use of terror Large army, torture, arrest, disappearances, murder Journalists, activists, dissenters –lives are in danger