Key Question - Why did the My Lai Massace occur? Flashcards Preview

Social Psychology AS level > Key Question - Why did the My Lai Massace occur? > Flashcards

Flashcards in Key Question - Why did the My Lai Massace occur? Deck (18)
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1
Q

When did it occur?

A

March 16th 1968

2
Q

What happened in the MLM?

A

150 soldiers led by LT. Calley stormed the hamlet of ML and 4hrs later more than 500 civilians were dead.

3
Q

Why was it so horrific?

A

They had not encountered a single enemy soldier and only 3 weapons were confiscated

4
Q

What was LT. Calley’s defense?

A

He had followed orders given by Captain Medina

5
Q

Calley was initially sentenced to life but

A

it was overturned and he only served 4 1/2 years

6
Q

Calley’s sentence was overturned because…

A

the appeal judges believed that Calley honestly believed he was obeying orders

7
Q

Social psychology is interested in the the MLM because

A

it can use it to try and explain why this occurred as it is essential for society to greater understand the soldier’s behaviour.

8
Q

The MLM implies

A

that court proceedings and punishments for those that commit similar offences should change if an explanation beyond the control of the individual is accepted, preventative measures can also be devised

9
Q

The military can also be aware what causes blind obedience so

A

training of new soldiers can account for this and try to prevent it

10
Q

How can Milgram’s (1963) experiment explain the MLM?

A

> 65% obeyed to an authority figure - electric shocks - not something they would do ordinarily
Shows authority figures create high obedience rates - LT Calley = Authority figure - some didn’t obey, similar to the 35%

11
Q

How does Adorno et al’s (1950) theory of authoritarian personality explain the MLM?

A

> LT Calley - known to be constantly trying to please Capt. Medina - potentially harsh upbringing, Army = US Vietnamese = Them, projecting anger onto them

12
Q

How does culture explain the MLM?

A

Culture may have existing social norms that legitimise prejudice - USA was v prejudiced to blacks,
>Kats and Braly found American students thought blacks were superstitious and ignorant

13
Q

How does situation explain the MLM?

A

> When not under authority they played with the children and treated the sick - suggests its the situation
Momentum of compliance - as requests increased, soldiers felt bound to continue

14
Q

How does Social Impact Theory explain the MLM?

A

> Immediacy - Commanders were with them supervising so were close in proximity, distance couldn’t act as a physical buffer
Strength - wore diff. uniform - high status, perceived as legit

15
Q

How does Social Identity Theory explain the MLM?

A

Identification - uniform, complying to commanders, rituals
Comparison - see army as better, Vietcong sympathisers - out group, any Vietnamese was enemy, self concept wrapped with in group, enhances self esteem

16
Q

How does RCT explain the MLM?

A

Competition over Vietnam, war = one winner, one loser - zero sum, same goal in sight - political power, believed every Vietnamese was to blame, prejudice - discrimination, many Vietcong didn’t wear uniform - hated outgroup

17
Q

How do Milgram’s variations 7 and 13 explain MLM?

A

EX7- closeness - 22.5% when orders given by phone - proximity matters
EX13- ordinary man - 20% LT Calley of high status, status matters

18
Q

How does Agency Theory explain the MLM?

A

> autonomously- those who disobeyed directed their own behaviour - knew they were responsible
agentically - those who gave in, passed responsibility, their conscience not in control
moral strain - feeling uncomfortable, alleviated by giving in