Situational Factors.

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  • Created by: Halcy
  • Created on: 07-04-15 19:43

Situational Factors - Zimbardo.

One explanation for Institutional Aggression is the role of Situational Factors. This suggests that aggression is the product of the stressful environment and opressive conditions of an institution. Situational factors, such as overcrowding, heightened frustration levels, peer pressure and lack of external constraints (like no negative consequences, or bystander intervention) can all have an effect. In particular, Zimbardo suggested that, in the absence of external constraints, people are more likely to deviate from the normal rules of societal conduct.

Other situational factors can include dehumanising labels (such as calling someone an "animal"), where the targeted party are seen as below moral consideration, and deindividuation, where an individual abandons their identity in favour of a group mentality.

When a range of situational factors combine, it can make normally good people act in an evil way.

Real Life Examples of Situational Factors: In the case of the Abu Ghraib prison - where American Soldiers abused and humiliated prisoners - Zimbardo argued that there were a range of situational factors at play, like the time of day and lack of external constraints, that made…

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