In 1961, one of the most controversial social experiments ever conducted took place in Yale University. The premise of the “Milgram Experiment” was simple. Participants were given the role of “teachers” and required to ask questions to another set of participants that were given the role of “learners”. Every wrong answer would constitute a punishment in the form of an electric shock.
Under the guise of a “memory experiment” for the benefit of science, the “teachers” were persuaded to also increase the voltage of these shocks to the point of being lethal with every wrong answer while listening to the voices of the “learners” screaming in pain.
While most participants wanted to stop when they heard the screaming, an authority figure kept on insisting that they continue. Under this method, 61% of the total “teachers” went on to electrocute the “learners” until they stopped responding and screaming!!
It was finally revealed that this experiment was conducted to see just how far a person would obey authority even if it meant to kill another human being. It is also revealed that the “learners” were actually actors and there were no electric shocks at all.
The troubling part of the experiment was that it showed the human impulse to obey authority despite it being unethical and immoral. Human beings can be pushed to go against our very principles just to obey. How far would you go?
To watch the detailed video of the experiment, please CLICK HERE for full details.