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FACTORS THAT AFFECT OBEDIENCE

Y Social contracts Y Proximity Y Fear of punishment Social contracts: What is meant by this is when we obey orders given to us by a superior without questioning their authority. As children we would eat our vegetables simply because our parents told us to.

Proximity: This term is used to define how our behaviors are affected by other people, mainly how the physical distance between each other affect us. How far away we work from each other or live from each other. If you are told to do something by a person in authority you are less likely to carry this out the further away they are. For example if you worked for a large multinational company and you received a call from a superior, which was in a nearby office, and she told you to read a report by lunch time you would be more likely to do carry this out even if you were struggling for time, than you would be if you had received a call from another superior which was located in New York asking you to do the same thing. The main reason for this would be the distance and the fact that they could not do much about it if you didn’t whereas if they where in a nearby room your superior could physically check up on you. This would change if for example out superior that was in the next room was a close friend asked you to have a look in a friendlier more casual way and/or if you where childhood friends, in this case you would be less likely to obey them. Psychologists have found this throughout many studies that have been carried out throughout the year the most significant on was the one carried out by Milgram in 1974 which concluded that if you are physically close to somebody you are to somebody you are more likely to follow their orders, other factors that would increase the effect of this are things that make that person look like they have more power of knowledge in the subject are, such as a white coat. Fear of punishment: one of the main reason discipline is maintained is because the person being ordered is likely to be fearful of being disciplined if they choose to defy the orders given to them. An example of this can be the fines you receive though motoring infractions. Within the public services there are penalties which may involve you being demoted or even being discharged.

33. Why do People Obey? Types of Power : Coercive Power – The ability to administer punishment (eg teacher) Reward Power – The ability to administer reward (eg parent) Expert Power – Superior knowledge (eg teacher) Referent Power – Someone you look up to (eg parent/celebrity) Legitimate Power – Official post held (eg Principal because of their position) This is particularly evident when the authority figure is in uniform. (Ref: Bickman, 1974) 34. Why do People Obey? Gender It has been suggested that women comply/conform/ obey more readily than men. (Ref: Crutchfield, 1955). It is also possible that the reason for females being apparently more susceptible to social pressure is that, generally, females tend to hold lower status than males. However, recent studies (Eagly and Carli, 1981) suggest that there are no significant differences between males and females. Why would you expect a disagreement between early and more recent studies? Socialisation In society there are many rules and regulations that exist to reinforce obedience. These are instilled in us from a very early age. For example, strong parental authority can result in an

Binding factors also help to keep an individual in an agentic state. and never questioning what they are told to do either at home or in school and even later in life.individual internalising the need for obedience (being in an agentic state). for example: fear of disrupting a social situation fear of questioning an authority figure. . at the workplace.