Developmental psychology in prejudice and obedience (Developmental…
Developmental psychology in prejudice and obedience
Behaviour changes over time, and can help to explain why levels of obedience and prejudice in an individual can change over the course of their lives.
The environment shapes attitudes and behaviour. This implies the way we are brought up and factors like culture have an effect on us.
Gender role schemas theory
: individuals develop a sense of masculinity and femininity as they are brought up, which affect how we perceive ourselves and others.
(Men stereotypically described as strong/aggressive)
(Women are obedient and compliant)
This can affect behaviour in terms of obedience, but overall it seems gender doesn't alter obedience levels to a large extent
Kilham and Mann (1974) found gender differences in Australia
16% of females obeyed to administering maximum voltage in comparison to 40% of males
When participant gave orders for someone else to administer shocks, 40% of females gave maximum voltage and 68% of males did
Meta-analysis by Blass (1991) with nine studies (including Kilham and Mann, the only study where females were more obedient), showed obedience between males and females was consistent
Universality of obedience
Replications of Milgram across the world, after finding high obedience levels in Americans, believed obedience was a universal behaviour
Blass reviewed replications and found obedience rates of 60.94% in US and 65.94% elsewhere which isn't different, supporting the universal aspect of obedience
Cross cultural difference in obedience
Smith and Bond (1998) found individualistic culture (American or British) are more likely to behave independently in comparison to collectivist cultures (China or Japan)
Collectivist cultures value group decision making, but individualistic cultures are more concerned with independent success
Culture is learned (in our development) in that people pick up on social norms that affect our behaviour and attitudes
(e.g if a country is multicultural, norms will affect policy and members of the society pick up on these norms such as pro-diversity norms)
Guimond et al (2013): those with multicultural norms were less prejudiced, they asked about society's norms, which would be learned from the environment (e.g media) -> prejudice and discrimination can come from learning and fits into developmental psychology
Guimond et al (2013)
Thought cultures with multiculturalism or assimilation in their social norms show less prejudice than cultures without this
Multiculturalism seen as high in pro-diversity
Assimilation (incorporating cultures into a country's society norms) seen as low in pro-diversity -> links to prejudiced attitudes, but multiculturalism is more positive about group interactions
Lowest level of prejudice -> Canada
Highest level -> Germany (lowest level of norms relating to multiculturalism)
Used data from four different countries/cultures and found similar findings about prejudice -> issues like this found in all cultures
Adorno et al
Though authoritarian personality developed in childhood, where harsh parenting leads to a love-hate relationship.
Hate is repressed and displaced onto weaker members of society (minorities) while they maintain respect for authority.