It was one of the most notorious series of experiments ever conducted: in a study on obedience to authority by Yale University psychologist Stanley Milgram, participants were told to give increasingly painful shocks to another study participant when the latter answered a question incorrectly. The “punished” participant could be heard screaming in a room next door as the shock intensity mounted, while those administering the shocks often pleaded with the study leader to stop the experiment. But it was all a ruse to see how far participants would go in obeying the authority figure – no shocks were actually administered.
This summer at Nipissing University, researchers and scholars will revisit and re-evaluate the famous Milgram experiments. From August 6 to 8, the university’s Muskoka campus plays host to the 2013 Obedience to Authority Conference: Milgram’s Experiments 50 Years On (Dr. Milgram first described his research in 1963 in an article published in the Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology). The conference will feature many influential Milgram scholars from around the world. Visit the conference website, www.obediencetoauthority.com, for more information.