- What is authority?
- Who are the authority figures in your life?
- Do you always listen to them?
- Should we always listen to authority figures?
- If an authority figure tells you to do something, are you still responsible for that action?
Activity 2: Obey all orders?
Adolf Eichmann was a Nazi war criminal who played a big role in the extermination of Jews during World War II. In his defense, he said that he didnt have a choice, that he was following orders. Do you think he is responsible for his actions? Or is it his superiors?
Activity 3: The Milgram Obedience Study.
Watch this YouTube video and take notes: what is the Milgram obedience study and what were the results?
Activity 4: Think about this:
- Think about a time in your life when you obeyed someone else and did something you later came to regret.
- Imagine that you are a participant in Milgram’s study of obedience. What would you have done if you refused to obey the orders and the experimenter in charge answered, “The experiment requires that you continue”?
- What could you do in general to make it less likely to obey an authority figure who’s telling you to do something that isn’t morally right?
- Are there situations in your life that might force you to obey authority figures even when you shoudn’t?
Activity 5: Other examples of blind obedience.
Have you seen the movie “Compliance”? Watch the trailer here:
The movie is based on a true story. Watch some of all of the video below for more information:
What connections can you make between the Milgram Obedience Study and the Donna Summers and Louise Ogborn incident? How are they similar? How are they different?
Read an article on authority and obedience by Robert Wolff–AND/OR listen to the reading here:
Do you remember the authority fallacy from week 9? Here is a refresher:
Activity 8: Take quiz 6 (or is it 5?) on Blackboard.
Take the authority and obedience quiz on Blackboard.