Authority and Conformity: The Demon Hidden Within

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Why did I survive? Why did I massacre thousands of innocent people? How could this have happened? It was just a nightmare none of this can be real. It’s over and done with let’s just get on with our lives already. These are some of the thoughts I believe both the Nazi’s and prisoners had after the holocaust was over. Some people were guilt-ridden by their actions and the harsh decisions they had to make between their survival and the survival of someone else. Other took more of a sociopathic and apathetic approach towards their actions during the holocaust blaming their actions on the people in charge. These different actions and outlooks on the events that occurred during the holocaust can be explained by people’s internal and external locus of control, and the phenomenon that occurs between authority and conformity.
This allows a very brief look on what people’s thoughts might have been after the holocaust whether they were forced into concentration camps or the people in charge of running the concentration camps. We have all heard and seen the horrific effects on the people forced into concentration camps by the Nazi’s, but we cannot fully comprehend what happened after the holocaust was over. Did they have survivor’s guilt? How did they push on in life? No one truly can understand what happened after the holocaust, but we can try to understand the reasons why people decided to massacre thousands, or choose to save their life over someone else’s. People were forced to make the decision whether or not their life was worth more than someone else’s. For example people who weren’t subjected to Hitler’s wrath could have helped those persecuted, but they decided against it in order to save themselves. They conformed to the world aro...

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..., and killed because of people’s need to constantly prove that they are better than others. Yet, how can people say they are better than someone else? Everyone has the ability to state their opinions, they can express their feelings, and most of all everyone bleed’s the same color. One person is no better than someone else because of looks and intelligence, and no one is better than someone else despite what society believes.

Works Cited

Ardent, Hannah. “Total Domination”A World of Ideas: Essential Readings for College Writers. 8th E.D.121-1336 .Benford/St. Martin’s,2010.Print
Frankl,Viktor. ”Man’s Search for Meaning”. Boston: Beacon Press,2006. Print.
Haslam, S. Alexander, and Stephen. D. Reicher. "Contesting The “Nature” Of Conformity: What Milgram And Zimbardo's Studies Really Show." Plos Biology 10.11 (2012): 1-4. Academic Search Premier. Web. 16 May 2014.

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