Ethical or not

In my point of view, I believed the experiment was ethical. Milgram constructed an experiment where a volunteer would follow a researcher’s orders, such as shocking a stranger, while the stranger “Actor” would beg and plead for them to stop. Seems a bit extreme but I feel that once being consulted at the end of the experiment the volunteer wouldn’t be carrying any moral burdens for very long. The experiment showed that when given orders most people will comply even if they are ordered to put someone in danger. Personally I feel this kind of experiment is helpful because it shows how obedient a person can really be even in the more stressful situations.

In the “Stanford Prison Experiment” Philip Zimbardo, Social Phycologist, set up a prison like environment where he sought outto observe the “Relationship of Power”. Volunteers would play the role of guards and prisoners. Shortly into the experiment, the prisoners were physically and psychologically harmed which led to the termination of his research. I think that itself answers the question as to whether his experiment was or was not ethical. I believe he should have defiantly went about his research a different way. His methods were without a doubt unethical to me for any case that leads to physical and psychological mistreatment.

Looking at both experiments I conclude that I would ethically rather perform Milgram’s research rather than Zimbardo’s. When studying something as delicate as a person’s instinctual reaction to hurting someone under orders than the way you go about it is key to the accuracy in your findings as well as the wellbeing of the people who are directly involved in the experiment.

If I were a professional sociologist, I would like to study peoples body language and the situations that trigger the person to move and act the way they do. Reading a person is very interesting to me and it would be nice to be more familiar with what situations make a person comfortable or uncomfortable. Then looking into how people from different cultures body languages differ from one or the other.