rade0154: May 2012 Archives

The Dark Knight is one of my favorite movies (it's not better than Batman Begins, despite what some say say). While I was watching it the other day I realized how closely the Joker's social experiment could be related back to the concepts we have learned about in psychology. For those who haven't seen the movie this is the Joker's 'experiment': there is one boat filled with inmates from a prison and the other boat has ordinary citizens from Gotham on it. The Joker tells both boats via loudspeaker that they each have a box with a detonator and that they have until midnight to blow up the other boat, and if they don't both of the boats will blow up at midnight. Spoiler alert: neither of them press the button and Batman stops the Joker from pressing the button to detonate them both. And now my question to you is, would you trust the other boat not to blow you up if you were an ordinary citizen? What if you were an inmate? Based off of what we have learned in psychology I would not trust the other boat to not blow me up whether i was the inmate or the regular citizen because they are so many things that can happen in stressful social situations like that. One example would be group polarization: the tendency for groups to make decisions that are more extreme than the original inclination of its members. Also, if social polarization did occur it is very likely that they would get worked up and deindividuation would occur causing someone to overreact and hit the button. I personally would not press the button in the hopes that there was someone else thinking the same thing as me on the other boat. But who knows!

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This page is an archive of recent entries written by rade0154 in May 2012.

rade0154: April 2012 is the previous archive.

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