Thursday, August 23, 2007

Evil 101

"Any deed that any human being has ever committed, however horrible, is possible for any of us—under the right circumstances."

The infamous "Stanford Prison Experiment" was aborted in less than a week due to its character-imploding power. Along with Stanley Milgram's studies of obedience to authority—the "shock experiments"— the investigation is considered one of the most important pieces of research demonstrating a core tenet of social psychology: external situations can lead us to behave in ways that we would not, could not, predict.

American Scientist Online features details in Robert Levine's review of "The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil," by Philip Zimbardo

Also, Discover Magazine Online has this excerpt

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