Comparison/ Contrast Essay In “The Perils of Obedience” by Stanley Milgram, Milgram explains that obedience is a natural occurring behavior, which acts on instinct ignoring a persons ethics, sympathy, and moral conduct (Milgram 343). In this experiment two people come into the laboratory where they are told they will be taking part in a study of memory and learning. One subject is the “teacher” and the other is the “learner”. The teacher is ask to read a list of simple word pairs. If the learner does not remember the word pair the teacher was instructed to send out electric shocks of increasing intensity as punishment to the learner. Whereas, “The Stanford Prison Experiment” by Philip Zimbardo is an essay which explains why society has a need to “learn” to become compliant and authoritarian (Zimbardo 363). Zimbardo created a mock prison setting consisting of ten prisoners and eleven guards. They were instructed to take over the role of guards and prisoners. Zimbardo wanted to test the effect that prison has on guards and prisoners. Milgram and Zimbardo were both interested in how people obey under authoritative circumstances, using “fake” settings to test obedience; however the writers differ in the seriousness of the fight for individuality and the use of reality. Under any given circumstance people tend to obey authority differently. Milgram tested this theory out by putting his volunteers into a laboratory setting and having them pressing a button shocking the other person for a wrong answer. The majority of Milgram’s volunteers went through the experiment, not wanting to disobey the authority figure. Milgram stated, ” The essence of obedience is that a person comes to view himself as the instrument for carrying out another person’s wishes, and he therefore no longer regards himself as responsible for his actions (Milgram 354).” With Zimbardo’s volunteers they sought out to dispense order and receive orders. …

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