Friday, June 26, 2009

A Sunny Day!

After so many days of clouds and rain, we finally had a sunny day here in Providence!

Well, today in class we watched the movie "A Beautiful Mind" in class. It's about John Nash, who developed schizophrenia while studying at Princeton University. As Mercedes said, he starts believing he is encoding messages for the government and must protect himself against the Russian spies. I think watching this movie really helped understand what people with this disorder go through everyday. I watched this movie during my foundations class when I was a freshman, but when I watched it again this time, more aspects of the movie made sense. I never really knew about this disorder, so after reading The Quiet Room and listening to Dr. J's lectures about it, I seemed to understand so much more about everything - his movements and his hallucinations.

After finishing lunch, I got straight to work on my week's reading reflection paper. We were supposed to write a 2-page paper about our reading and I found this fairly easy since we've talked about the book so much. It was actually a bit hard to limit what I was going to write about.

In addition to writing my paper, I also read the study I mentioned earlier The Power of Conformity since my group will be planning out our presentation tomorrow during lunch. I found the study very interesting. Basically, one must have seven "participants" who were actually allies of the experimenter and one actual participant. The subjects would be shown one card with a single line and another card with three lines of different lengths. Each person would then be asked to identify which out of the three lines is the same length as the standard line. Everyone answers in a line with the actual participant at the end of the line. For the first two trials, everyone will give the same, obvious answer. However, during the next trial, the first participants will choose the wrong line in order to see how the last person will answer. Surprisingly, to me anyways, around 75% went along with the group's wrong answer! I can't wait to talk to my group and find out how we are going to present out topic in our 25-minute time slot.

Now, I'm going to try to read a bit for my homework since I know this will be an extremely busy weekend. And I can't wait!

1 comment:

Don Gosney said...

Interesting experiment, Courtney, but were you really surprised that there are so many lemmings walking around you? We see it in every day life where people refuse to challenge what they're told even when their minds tell them to.

We see this often with mob mentality where people will go along with the mob and do things they might not otherwise do if they had been by themselves.

What does this tell you about people and what does it tell you about how a person with the right leadership skills might be able to manipulate the masses into going along? Do you see any correlations in history where this may have taken place? Maybe in Germany circa 1933 or the US circa 1950 or even the US circa 2001?