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Stanford Prison Experiment

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147 Comments

  1. dezgoncalves says:

    I’ve heard a lot about the Stanford experiment in other Psych classes that I’ve taken,but I think it proves a very important point. That point is, that many times when people get power, they tend to abuse it. This overall was an experiment,these men weren’t real prisoners, and the guards weren’t real guards, yet the time spent in isolation with these “Fake prisoners”, turned these men mad, and made them beat these prisoners, and cause horrible abuse, as if it was a real prison.

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  2. Netra Kumari Bhattarai says:

    i think the experiment was definitely more about what happens when power is given to individuals and how the abused sink into of victim. it really speaks volumes of the relationship between the abuser and the abused. it’s interesting to see how easily the human psycho given repetitive abuse is conditional to receive it and accepted it.

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  3. jz255425 says:

    When watching this video, it was horrifying how all the guards enjoyed having this role in the experiment. It really shows what power can do to people; it turns them into monsters of greed and selfishness. By letting all that power and authority get to their heads, they were so willing to try things that society or their morals didn’t allow them to do. This reminded me of the Nazis and the Jews. The Nazis were so demoralized and felt superior over the Jews, they tortured and killed them in many ways that not many could every think of in today’s world. Also, the prisoners in the experiments were treated like Jews and put in conditions that were similar to a concentration camp. What I don’t understand is why the professor in charge of this experiment didn’t stop when things got out of hand. He should have known better because this experiment damaged the mentality of the prisoners and the guards. These prisoners will probably have PTSD and these guards will probably want more and more power.

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  4. Jostel Tejeda says:

    This experiment is a prime example of becoming drunk off authority. The guards were given no guidelines on what to do, and when they began to realize that they were in control, it became a kill or be killed situation. If the prisoners do not obey the guards then what is the reason to have guards, what reason is there to have authority when no one will be complacwnt to it? The guards began to carry out their own humiliation on the prisoners, each time taking it to a more and more extreme, because no one was telling the guards “do not do that”, “that isprohibited” the guards they had gain authority, they were in control of the situation and can do whatever they wanted with the prisoners. This punishment and humiliation caused detremental effects on the prisoners that made each one have a mental break down and begin to have negative psychological effects on them. Which reminds me a lot of bullying. The bully feels he has the power and authority to bully and humiliate his victim just because he thinks he can, while his victim is breaking down psycologically

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  5. Dennis Hernandez says:

    The experiment began with it being awkward at first to the prisoners cleaning toilets with their bare hands. The experiment itself goes to show that people will turn on each other when given role and power. The guards had the urge to Misuse their “title” for the wrong doing. They quickly realized how much power they had and kept pushing their limits. The guards were doing things that they wouldn’t normally do. This experiment is why leadership structures must be implemented instead of just giving anyone power.

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  6. bkamar75 says:

    The Stanford Prison experiment shows how people get intoxicated with power so quickly. It was like acting in the beginning but later become real. Though the purpose of the study according to the investigator/observer -Dr. Philip Zimbardo was to find out whether the brutality reported among guards in America prisons was due to the guards dispositional or the prison environment. The guards believe that the prisoners are true criminals and they need to be brutalized and dehumanized. This really proves what the prisoners are going through in real life.

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  7. Alejandra Castillo says:

    The men went into the jail knowing that it was an experiment but didn’t really know what was going to happen. When they were assigned their roles , it was awkward for the guards to give commands to the prisoners. They really took the experiment serious because the men who were assigned the roles of prisoners had to go through the whole thing. They were arrested and taken into the police station to get their fingerprints done and everything that someone would have to do if they were actually going into jail. In the beginning no one thought that anything was going to change. It was shocking to see that it didn’t take that long for the men to start picking up in their roles. The guards were being really harsh towards the prisoners, knowing that the prisoners were just regular people and they didn’t do anything bad. The guard went all out in trying to show that since they had all the power they could do anything. They would do anything to humiliate the prisoners and show them that they weren’t anything. It was hard to see how almost all the prisoners had mental breakdowns because of guards. This experiment really showed how that if you give someone power over anybody they are going to use it and abuse over the other person.

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  8. Jessica Loiseau says:

    This video and the Milligram experiment are similar because they both touched on authority can change people. The guards became really cruel, and i think they forgot that it was an experiment. Both gave the example on how people that were involved on those experiments continued the experiment even though they knew they were harming the others. The experiment shows us how selfish and heartless human beings can be with certain roles they are given. I think that these experiments traumatized them. These guards took advantage of their power and decided to use their power to be cruel. It’s sad because I’ve seen this happen too often. People gain a little power and they forget that everyone is human and they should be treated as such.

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  9. Valeria Soto says:

    This experiment is a great example of authority. It’s amazing how in 6 days everyone and everything can change drastically especially if everyone who attended were just regulars human beings. Authority plays a lot in the guards, they took it to the next level everyday and each action taken was done worse each time. It amazes me seeing how the prisoners reacted to the guards knowing they were not real guards but did everything they were told even if it was out of there comfort zone. For the guards to discipline and enjoy everything they were putting the prisoners through is shocking, just because it could of been them going through the humiliation and emotional phase. It took a women to open up Zimbardo’ s eyes to shut down the experiment making him realize how authority was taken to far. This shows that society can be easily triggered to change behaviors all because of power. Power is a big roll in this experiment and it starts by allowing anyone control what you do knowing who you are and what is your place in the world.

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  10. av151215 says:

    As I watched this video Stanford Prison seem very disturbing to watch, Prisoners being mistreated an having serious emotional breakdowns.The guards themselves didn’t feel any quilt while enacting on their behavior against the prisoners until the exprpencement ended.The guards were instructed to do whatever they though was necessary go maintain law and order in the prison and to command the respect of the prisoners. Zimbardo observed the behavior of the printers and guards at the same time.

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  11. soso617 says:

    This is why power is so dangerous. The guards were regular people that lost control and got high on power. They treated the inmates like animals and violated every human rights and moral. This was hard to see because it caused permanent damage to those boys. This study definitely changed those boys and probably made some of them more dangerous. It’s as if the guards were competing on who could humiliate who the most. The saddest part is that they didnt even realize or care when the prisoners started having emotional and mental breakdowns. I’m actualy surprised that they didnt have any suicides happen during the study. How does a psychologist do a harsh and dehumanizing experiment like that and think its ok? I understand the importance of studying human behavior , but for someone to think to lock people in what might as well have been a whole and treat them like they are less than human makes me wonder if he was the one who should’ve been getting a study done. I’m glad at least the wife was able to tell him he had change and turned into a animal.

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  12. mdejesus617 says:

    The Stanford Prison Experiment really show what power and authority can do to an individual. I thought it was interesting when Dave Eshelman also known as John Wade in the experiment said that by masking their identities, it allows a person to act in a different way then they would then if they did not have a mask on. Though it all started as an experiment, the guards quickly got caught up in that role and enjoyed holding the power because again, just as Dave Eshelman mentioned, no one had stopped them. The other guards followed “John Wade” and enjoyed abusing the prisoners. Dave Eshelman/ “John Wade” said he does not know where he would have stopped himself. The experiment only took place for less than a week where abusing, degrading and dehumanizing the prisoners became acceptable to guards. The guards and Dr. Philip Zimbardo did not see what they were doing wrong because they quickly adapted to their role of torturing the prisoners. We see it all too often where people that hold such power and authority take advantage and abuse their role but most of the time get away with it.
    This may have been an experiment but this experiment was taken to whole different level where the prisoners WERE abused, tortured, dehumanized and degraded. This is very REAL!

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  13. Isabella Orozco says:

    The Stanford Prison experiment shows clearly to what point of evil a human being who has power can reach. It is incredible but true, from night to morning they forget who they are, and they let themselves be carried away by the ego, by the fact that they can make decisions that others can not. I agree with Dave Eshelman when he says “when you mask your identity, it allows you to behave in ways you would not behave if you did not have the mask on.” On the other hand, I am one of those who believe that a social environment changes people in some way or another, but always creates an impact, whether for good or for bad. I consider this experiment to be very strong, since it created a very great effect on the prisoners in such a short time, as in the guards, since they did not know how to use their power for a good, if not to torture and create physical and psychological damages in these prisoners.

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  14. cxrojo says:

    Power has a lot of to do in people behavior. In this video is seen how people change their acts and the way they treat others just having their authority at a higher level. At the beginning they did not know what they could do. Then, when the guards felt that were them who had the power, they did not have compassion and pity for the prisoners. It is sad how power can make Change people’s personality. Just knowing that they have the power and even that they knew that the others are innocent as the guardians in this video did, they enjoy the suffering and pain of others. It is horrible how inhumane the guards are, they don’t have feeling for prisoners. It is unbelievable how they abuse them. Finally, the power has a lot of consequences in a people’s behavior. But it also depend what kind of people have the possibilities to get the power and the authority. There are some People that have not the capacity to do those kinds of behaviors. Personally I do not have that kind of Heart to make people suffer like that.

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  15. TOM NGUYEN says:

    This was honestly also disheartening to see and all the guards look happy and such to have the authority to others which means more power. Many people honestly want to have more power in their world. The people who were chosen to be prisoners must have been scarred by this and this changes their perspective in life such as how there were many things within Gran Torino that changed their life and scarred them. It basically stripped them of their freedom and their self esteem must have been lowered by a whole ton by the experiment. However, for the guards, it must have made them feel much more powerful. What if it was switched? How would the guards feel after that if they had switched roles? Also, how was this experiment approved? Or is it not necessary for experiments to be approved by a board? I am honestly happy that the wife told the man that he has changed and he shut down the experiment, else it could have lasted much longer and that means the more time that the people get in the experiment meaning more torture for the prisoners and more power for the people that were controlling them.

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  16. gabynavarro13 says:

    Personally, I love learning about psychological experiments no matter how unethical they are (if they are consensual of course). The mind is very powerful and even more so when it is under pressure. It’s interesting to see what humans can be capable of when given unsupervised power and a sense of authority and entitlement. The Stanford Prison Experiment, displays an extreme change of behavior in a short period of time- the guards seemed to believe their authority title and felt the need to push the boundaries on what they could and couldn’t do, even though they knew it was all fake. The prisoners felt as if they were real prisoners after a few days because of the psychological damage the guards put them through. The prisoners’ breakdowns were real and raw. This reminds me of coerced confessions from the police/detectives and suspects. When an authority figure pressures and humiliates a vulnerable person, they will most likely end up confessing or giving in to demands (depending on the case) or breaking down like the prisoners in the experiment.

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  17. Phery Tale says:

    The Standford experiment proves that when a human being is being granted unlimited power over others, they loose their sense of humanity. And if their attention is not called out they risk being lost in their dehumanize acts. In this experiment we see how the human mind is inquisitive, trying to know what will happen next if there is a change in behavior. for example the prison guards kept putting pressure (punishing) on the prisoners in other to see their reactions and also the fact that the prisoners became submissive, also shows how quick the human mind works towards authority.

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  18. nsujit says:

    The Stanford experiment explored the human nature and showed the change in behavior with the authority of power or how individuals can abuse power. Experiment started as a drama with fake prisoner and prison guard but horrific part was when guards forgot who they were. Once the rebel against them started from the prisoners, it was the moment when change in their behavior started. The mental humiliation transferred to both physical and mental at the same time. They thought themselves the real authorized prison guard and other people on other side dangerous prisoners. The surprising fact is the time, the day ‘guard’ mistreated prisoners, rebel started against the guards leading the abuse of authorities. At the end of sixth day the situation was out of control .It also shows the reflection of obedience and personal conscience, Once it got hurt both the side went from bad to worse. At end the experiment had to be stopped as it was turning brutal the behavior had swift turns , not only between the volunteers even on the behavior of the researcher .I personally concluded that the dress the equipment provided to the volunteers was the major cause of the change in human behavior, and abuse of authority . It also depends upon the nature of person and kind of behavior. But the experiment was brutal and inhumane.

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  19. Hussein Hussein says:

    I have heard of the Stanford experiments before and seen how people take their authority to a whole new level. This prison experiment is mad because at the start people didn’t know how to act during this experiment and it shift when Dave Eshelman also known as John Wayne during the experiment used his power to harass the prisoners and he did this because he no one told him otherwise. These experiments showed how the humans can change their whole identity can change once given power. The experiments even changed the observers(Dr. Philip Zimbardo) because he couldn’t see the harm in this experiment and taught what is the worst the could happen. The Stanford prison experience is absolutely shocking because it only took less than a week to change normal people into something unrecognizable. The guards adapted very quickly to this new environment they were revealed to. It is scary what people can do when they have power. I could never participate in this experiments because I wouldn’t have the guts to do this.

    6:00 am

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  20. The Stanford Experiment and Milgram Experiment are both similar in that, they shows how people follow orders from authority. However,Stanford shows how powerful environment and stressfull situations changes human behavior with time. Power can make people to change completely without realizing it, We can see that clearly from the guards. The authority told them they are in control, they can do what ever they want to the prisoners to make them obey them without giving them limits. Each day the guards re-enforce the way they brutalizes the prisoners. It become worst to the point that they started breaking down. though they where breaking down, the guards did not stop at any time,they did not have any feelings for them. Their act brought out their inhumanistic nature, they forgot completely that the prisoners where innocent people. It think some authorities should have limits.

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  21. Hamza Benmensour says:

    This experiment was absolutely difficult to watch. I get that at first, it seemed like a good idea to test out the difference in authority between prison guards and prisoners. However, it was taken a tad bit far when they started to make them forcefully do sexual activities that they did not feel comfortable with. The emotional breakdowns were eye-opening for me because although this was all fake the fact that they were disrespected in so many ways it made them feel vulnerable emotionally. Furthermore, the prison guards realized the second day that there was a power shift that just struck them and they decided to use it to its full extent. The only thing I didn’t understand from the video is when they said that they chose the most “normal” people for the experiment which I didn’t understand because what do they consider normal? That differs from person to person. Did the personality tests test for something specific or what? Maybe that was a factor to the findings of this research and had they chosen other people there would’ve been a different outcome.

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  22. KENNY LUONG says:

    This experiment truly showcases the severity of the negatives that humanity is capable of causing. It is shown in this experiment that humans are more willing to attempt things that are not usually accepted by society or even themselves. In that, they are more willing to try things from the imagination, they feel superior to their surroundings and emphasize that fact by abuse. The prisoners in the experiment were dehumanized and put under severe conditions similar to that of a concentration camp. It was to the point that these treatments were all considered a part of the experiment, even worse it was allowed to continue even though the participants experienced breakdowns throughout the 6 days. this damaged both the mentality of the prisoners and the guards who experienced an overwhelming corruption of power. And even worse, it revealed that the professor leading this experiment did not realize his research as something that actually dehumanized these individuals and possibly permanently damaging them.

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  23. Rodney Figueroa says:

    It’s crazy to think how quickly someone can change up because of the amount of power they feel they have. Or vice versa how someone can feel as if they’re lesser than someone because they’re being told what to do by someone with authority

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  24. Hannah Ramos says:

    The Stanford Prison experiment shows that having power in your hands can change a person’s behavior in a frightening way. With more power, more you are capable of doing “bad” things. In this experiment the guards believed that they were only staging, but in fact they were just hiding behind the “fantasy”and doing what they never imagined they would do.
    Why couldn’t they just be friends? Just talk friendly, not have a guard and prison relationship? It didn’t have anyone to say what they should and should not do! They could have changed the rules…

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  25. victorialuchi says:

    I wish I could believe this is not possible but according with previous videos we’re suppose to watch humans have no emotions for other humans meanly when they are strangers.

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  26. After watching the Stanford Prison Experiment video it really shows how cruel human beings can be. The guards took their power way too far. The way they treat the prisoners were unnecessary. These prisoners were put through so many punishments such as putting them in small closets, not letting them sleep. The guards were enjoying putting these prisoner through the worst. Some prisoners were pushed so hard that they would go through break downs. The worst part of it all was them going as far as sexually assaulting them. It was difficult for me to watch and hear what all these prisoners went through.

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