The Milgram Experiment “Obedience to Authority” brings a lot of controversy and concern with how it was conducted. When analyzed by the American Sociological Association’s code of ethics, this experiment would not be considered unethical. People may say it is, because of how it convinces the teacher that they are hurting someone, but no one is physically hurt, and the chances of mental harm were slim. I feel that as soon as the experiment was explained, the teacher would realize that it’s really nothing. With that being said, I could see the possibility of a person who shocked at the maximum volts possible, possibly receive some psychological damage for feeling possibly sadistic.
There is no doubt that the Zimbardo experiment was unethical. While the allowance of people to become more powerful and use this power to their advantage is genius from a sociological standpoint, the amount of humiliation the prisoners received was detrimental to their mental health. The video, “The Stanford Prison Experiment” shows multiple “inmates” having mental breakdowns and wanting to leave. Therefore, the mental damage prisoners sustained, as well as any possible physical damage make this experiment unethical.
The finding of Milgram and Zimbardo, in my opinion, very important to the world and with that worth the risk and damage to the participants. The experiments, although possibly traumatic, was not fatal. It provides very valuable research information to the sociological and psychological world. With this information it is easy to understand how people react to power, or when put in a position of power. This information is useful in reforming governments and securities provided day to day.
If I was a sociologist, I would be very interested in studying the environment a child grows up in and how it effects the child’s brain development. The brain is fascinating to me, and understanding how different environments like, cities, small towns, mountains, farms, etc., may affect the way they react to different life-changing events in their life.