Social Influence And Group Conformity

Decent Essays
Kim Smith
Psyc 1101
Paper 1
2-23-12
Social Influence and Group Conformity
I grew up in a small city thirty minutes south of Atlanta, which is where I have lived for the majority of my life. By growing up and living in the same town for so long, I started to become accustomed to this certain life style and was use to being around the same group of people. At the end of my eighth grade year my parents told me how my grandparents needed extra help around the house, and that I was going to be living with them for the entire summer. Although we traveled to Wisconsin to visit them yearly, moving in with them for the summer was a complete culture shock and a role reversal to me. I was use to growing up in a wealthy area with lots of shopping, things to do, and always knowing whom everybody is. My grandparents however, live in a secluded town with their house on a lake, no shopping malls or chick-fil- a, and a thirty minute drive to the nearest Walmart. Everything was different about being in this small, northern town and I had to make new friends and develop new interests in order to fit in and have a fun time, during my stay there over the
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Conformity, which can either be public or private, is a result of normative and informational social influence. The conformity I demonstrated in my story above was mainly due to normative social influence and the fact that I wanted to be liked by my new friends and participate in new activities that they enjoyed doing. I was demonstrating normative social influence because I was learning how to fish, in order to fit in and be rewarded with the acceptance of this new group of friends. I would invite people fishing not merely to fish with them because it was something people around Wisconsin did, but also because in return I hoped that they would invite me fishing as well. I also exhibited a bit of public conformity, whereby I would fish to show others that I indeed liked to go fishing, but it was not a type of behavior or activity I would enjoy doing on my own. Over time I began to gain private conformity to fishing. This is because fishing really became something that I loved and enjoyed to do weather I was with my friends or by

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