Lesson 8 - Dispostional Explainations Of Obedience Flashcards Preview

Social Influence - Module 2: Obedience > Lesson 8 - Dispostional Explainations Of Obedience > Flashcards

Flashcards in Lesson 8 - Dispostional Explainations Of Obedience Deck (6)
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What is a Dispositional explanation of obedience? Who was it proposed by?

- Adorno (1950)
- Dispositional explanations of behaviour claim that an individuals personality characteristics determine their behaviour


What are Authoritarian Personalities?

- Authoritarian personalities are more likely to obey authority figures
- They have a collection of traits that make them more obedient.


What traits make an authoritarian personality obey?

- Servile towards people of perceived higher status
- Hostile towards people of lower status
- Preoccupied with power
- Inflexible in their beliefs and values
- Conformist and Conventional
- Categorical (us and them)
- Dogmatic (intolerant of ambiguity)


Why do people have authoritarian personalities?

- Recipients of strict/rigid parenting, involving physical punishment (abuse)
- Creating feelings of hostility towards parents
- Feelings displaced onto weaker others or feelings are repressed
- Cannot take anger out on parents so act submissive
- The submissive behaviour is extended to all authority figures


What is the questionnaire that measures authoritarian personalities?

- The F-Scale (Fascism)
- Participants rate how much they agree/disagree with a statement
Such as: ‘obedience and respect for authority are important virtues children should learn’


Evaluation of Authoritarian Personality

- People that scored high on The F-Scale were more likely to obey an order to hold onto a piece of electric wire whilst answering an arithmetic problem. (Miller 1975)
- Participants were told to give themselves rising shocks when they made a mistake on a task. Those willing to shock themselves had a high score on The F-Scale (Altemeyer 1981)
- Situational Factors may be more important than Dispositional Factors: Milgram brought obedience up to 100% when Mr W made no noise, and lowered obedience to 0% when two authority figures argued with each other.
- Dispositional Factors cannot explain obedience in entire societies because authoritarian personalities are not common. (65% obeyed in Milgram)
- Less educated people are more likely to have an authoritarian personality (Middendorp, Meleon 1990). Participants with lower levels of education obeyed more (Milgram)