Theme Of Conformity In A Few Good Men

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Conformity is often criticized on grounds of morality, but tends to help society function correctly. Today there is an ascent in congruity and submission, which are two social standards which people are required to display in order to fit into the norm. However, when people, especially youth, disregard their identity and give up their own personal morals this causes problems within society. This subject has been explored in many ways, including in film. A Few Good Men, directed by Ron Reiner, confronts the issue of the nature of conformity when two young men, Dawson and Downey struggle with their morals being in conflict with an order. These men are charged with murder of a fellow Marine, Santiago, and seek to find justice. Their lawyers, Daniel …show more content…
During the experiment, the experimenter (another actor) would encourage the teacher to keep giving shocks (which were fake), bringing in the idea of conforming to a higher power. Additionally, Philip G. Zimbardo wrote “The Stanford Prison Experiment” in which people were assigned a role and were either obedient or disobedient to authority. This experiment consisted of subjects who were randomly assigned to play the role of “prisoner” or “guard.” The guard’s role was similar to the teacher’s role in the Milgram experiment in which these two groups of people were to be in control of the other individual’s life. But why do people consciously decide to cast their morals away and follow authority figures? It seems that while society still has its moral standards, people are willing to go against them in order to please a higher …show more content…
This can be seen where Dawson and Downey fall into roles such as the prisoners in the Zimbardo experiment. Kendrick informs the court as to why Dawson got a Code Red, “Lance Corporal Dawson was found to be below average because he committed a crime” (Few). Then continues to say, “He disobeyed an order” (Few). By Kendrick saying this, he implies that disobeying an order from authority is a crime. Individuals within society get to choose whether or not they uphold their beliefs, yet some are quick to abandon their beliefs in order to conform. In a similar fashion, the experimenter in the Milgram experiment makes this idea concrete. Milgram states, “ [t]he essence of obedience is that a person comes to view himself as the instrument for carrying out another person’s wishes, and he therefore no longer regards himself as responsible for his actions” (87). By being obedient, a person can be taken advantage of by authority and in turn abandon their moral

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