Dr. Philip Zimbardo 's ' The Stanford Prison Experiment '

1442 Words Oct 21st, 2014 6 Pages
The following case study provides information obtained through research, regarding the Stanford Prison Experiment during the year of 1971. This case study will pay particular attention to the inmate and guard life.
Background
Dr. Philip Zimbardo conducted one of the most dramatic psychological experiments just to answer two questions, “What happens when you put good people in an evil place?” and “Does humanity win over evil, or does evil triumph?” The aim of the Stanford Prison Experiment was to investigate how willingly people would adjust to the roles of guard and prisoner in a role-playing exercise that simulated prison life. Zimbardo was interested in finding out whether the brutality reported among guards in American prisons was due to the sadistic personalities of the guards or had more to do with the prison environment (McLeod, 2008). To study the roles people play in prison situations, Zimbardo converted a basement of the Stanford University psychology building into a mock prison.
Setup
The prison was constructed by boarding up each end of a corridor in the basement of Stanford’s Psychology Department Building. That corridor was “the yard” and was the only outside place where prisoners were allowed to walk, eat, or exercise. For prisoners to go to the toilet down the hallway they were blindfolded so they did not know the way out of the prison. To create prison cells, they took the doors off some laboratory rooms and replaced them with specially made doors with…
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