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Transcript
EVIL, TERRORISM, TORTURE, AND OTHER
BAD STUFF
WHAT IS “EVIL”?
Bandura: moral disengagement
 Zimbardo: intentionally behaving or causing others
to act in ways that demean, dehumanize, harm,
destroy, or kill innocent people
 Staub: intensely harmful actions, which are not
commensurate with instigating conditions and the
persistence or repetition of such acts
 Baumeister: threatened egotism
 Buss: causing reproductive harm to other and
especially to those close to us
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TERRORISM
“Politically motivated violence perpetrated by
individuals, groups, or state sponsored agents (?)
intended to instill feelings of terror and
helplessness in a population to influence decision
making and change behavior” (Moghaddam,
2005)
 To get political objectives, threatened or real
violence (Saucier et al., 2009)
 “Indiscriminate use of force”, political agenda,
spreading fear (Kruglanski et al., 2011)

BANDURA, 2004
Moral justification
 Palliative comparison
 Euphemistic labeling
 Displacement and diffusion of responsibility
 Minimizing, ignoring, or misconstruing the
consequences
 Dehumanization, attribution of blame
 Examples? “Normal” examples?

BANDURA MODEL
Change perception of conduct
 Change sense of consequences
 Change feelings of responsibility
 Change one’s view of victim

ZIMBARDO, 2004
Anonymity
 Reduce concerns about self-evaluation
 Obligation/roles
 Semantics
 Propaganda, education
 Give justification
 Small steps
 Diffusion of responsibility
 Make it hard to leave

How do we use these in the military?
 Terror alerts
 What are the implications of the situational
view?
 Is evil seen differently in collectivist countries?

GIBSON & HARITOS-FATOUROS, 1986
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Choose normal people with appropriate attitudes
Initiation rites
In-group language and rules
Dehumanize victims
Harassment in in-group so can’t think
Reward obedience
Social modeling
Systematic desensitization to acts
Carrots and sticks
Education against outgroup
HOW TO MAKE A
Suicide bomber
 Torturer
 Terrorist
 Cult member
 School shooter

MOGHADDAM, 2005
What causes terrorism, according to M?
 Floor 1: perceptions of fairness, procedural
justice

 Contextualized
democracy (Arab spring)
Floor 2: displacement of aggression
 Floor 3: moral disengagement
 Floor 4: categorical thinking, legitimacy of org*
 Floor 5: distance from outgroup, act

How does religious fundamentalism have an
effect on both sides?
 Is he only talking about Arabs?
 “they can’t exit alive”
 What does he suggest for preventing terrorism?

SAUCIER ET AL., 2009
Is there a terrorist type, according to these
authors?
 What was their methodology?
 Are documents and internet a good way to
study these? (advantages/disadvantages)

THEMES FROM SAUCIER ET AL.
Necessity of extreme measures
 Absolve responsibility
 Use of military terminology
 Perception that group is being held back
 Glorifying the past of one’s group
 Utopianizing
 Catastrophizing
 Supernatural assumptions

Feel need to purify world from evil
 Glorification of dying for the cause
 Duty to kill
 Use of immoral acts okay to get to goals
 Seeing intolerance, vengeance, and war as good
 Dehumanization
 Modern world = bad
 Civil government as illegitimate

What do these authors suggest to decrease
terrorism?
 How do terrorism, state-sponsored violence,
and genocide differ?
 Are these also present in more tame politics?
 Global warming?

KRUGLANSKI, SHARVIT, & FISHMAN, 2011
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What is their main point?
Individual level:
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Not relative deprivation
Ideology, sense of duty
Quest for personal significance
Group level
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Social support, friend/family networks
Shared reality/less contact with outsiders
Language for own and other groups
Public commitment
Authority that they listen to and not think on their own
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Organization-level:
 Rational
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choice given their means
What to do to reduce?
GINGES, ATRAN, SACHDEVA, & MEDIN, 2011
What is these authors’ main point?
 Are they setting up a straw man?
 Words and concepts
 Sacred values

Culture of honor
 Disgust
 What are ours?
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Causes:
Not education, poverty
 Friendship and family networks
 Perceived foreign meddling
 Sense of national humiliation
 Frustrated expectations
 Social marginalization
 Commitment to ingroup and values
 Group cohesion, peer support
 “Logical” when thinking about diplomacy, not violence

WAYS TO DECREASE/PREVENT
EVIL/TERRORISM
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Empathy (Bandura)
Humanization, stop us/them thinking (Bandura,
Moghaddam)
Better the lives of those in other countries (Bandura,
Zimbardo, Moghaddam)
Use only “just war”; Promote justice (Bandura.
Moghaddam, Kruglanksi)
Better negotiation, talk to other side (Zimbardo,
Moghaddam)
Reduce collateral damage (Kruglanski)
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Have young people share (Zimbardo)
Contextualized democracy (get women involved;
Moghaddam)
Encourage opposite thinking (Saucier et al.)
Show people that crisis isn’t so bad, mission not sacred,
violations of values exaggerated (Saucier et al., Ginges et al.)
Have outgroup make symbolic concessions to ingroup’s
sacred values (Ginges et al.)
Challenge the idea that violence is morally mandated
(Ginges et al.)
Challenge the idea that terrorism is effective (Kruglanski)
Kill their leaders (Kruglanski)
Which of these are practical? Most likely to
succeed?
 Are there other methods not mentioned? Why
are these and not those mentioned?

GENERAL ISSUES
Could anyone commit these acts?
 Are the people responsible for what they did?
 How can we study these issues?
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=msTAFlUJl5
4
 How are psychologists involved in
torture/terror? Is that okay?
