Discussion of the Stanley Milgram’s "Perils of Obedience"

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Discussion of the Stanley Milgram’s "Perils of Obedience"
As Milgram writes in his article, for some people obedience is a deeply “ingrained behavior tendency”, which can create an impulse that can override past ideas in morality and ethics. While his experiment focused closely on the psychology behind response to obedience, his central idea conveyed substantial themes which bore on conceptions of professional ethics. One of these themes involved the previously underestimated significances of the potency of authority in influencing decision-making, even ones that go against one’s own conscientious imperatives.
As most of us are “indoctrinated” in our childhood to develop a basic conception of values and virtues, one of the things we as human beings have grasped, through many phases in our evolution as societal creatures, is the importance of obedience to some form of authority. This scheme, now deeply ingrained in our psychology, plays a very strong role in the decisions we make daily, including playing a part towards trumping moral values, including possibly a code of professional ethics. [EXAMPLE]
Individual morality, according to Milgram’s opinion, can be heavily compromised in the face of authority figures, in fact suggesting that in truth, in our society, individuality may be something that does not exist at all, and that the vast majority of our decision making may have sociological origins. In fact as Stanley Milgram showed, the weakening of the individual’s moral conscience is by far the most significant impact of a system of obedience to authority.
Individual morality, although still a factor in determining one’s action in the face of authority, is easily outdone by a multitude of other factors relevant to obedience. First was the (feeling of) giving up of any personal responsibility that takes precedence when one becomes only the “representative” to a...

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