June 23, 2015
Attitudes can be shapes by culture, experience, situations, and even pressure from others or the need to be consistent (Carter & Seifert, 2013). It involves our emotions, our actions, and our thoughts. These are also called the ABC’s: Affects, Behaviors, and Cognitions. When these three aspects are in harmony, then it is easy to determine a person’s motivation. A conflict arises, however, when there is an inconsistency in any of these areas. This is why people will work diligently to try and make their actions and attitudes match.
Social pressures will create some of the tension that must be mitigated to successfully fit in the various social settings we find ourselves in. Prejudice, aggression, and attraction help us posture ourselves properly among our peers and allow us to function within the social structures in which we interact. Because of the social nature of human beings, we have a high need to be accepted. That need for acceptance often serves as motivation for our behavior in group settings.
Conformity and obedience are two phenomenon that have produced some disturbing results in various social experiments that have been conducted over the years. Some experiments have shown how people will often change their responses, even when they believe they are correct, simply because the majority of people in the experiment gave a different answer. Whether it was out of fear of being ridiculed if they were indeed incorrect, or because they preferred being non-confrontational, the scenario still resulted in the subjects often conforming to those around him or her. Other experiments showed how people who perceived to be instructed by person’s of authority in certain settings would move ahead with mmorally questionable actions despite their own discomfort in order…