Catalog Home Page

A history of coercive practices: The abuse of consent in research involving prisoners and prisons in the United States

Israel, M.ORCID: 0000-0002-1263-8699 (2016) A history of coercive practices: The abuse of consent in research involving prisoners and prisons in the United States. In: Adorjan, M. and Ricciardelli, R., (eds.) Engaging with Ethics in International Criminological Research. Routledge as part of Taylor & Francis, pp. 69-86.

Link to Published Version: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315675671
*Subscription may be required

Abstract

You have to feel for Philip Zimbardo. His Stanford-based experiment into the effects of the prison setting was abandoned after six days when the students assigned as ‘guards’ subjected students assigned as ‘prisoners’ to physical and psychological abuse and many student-prisoners started to behave in pathological ways. Zimbardo has spent a considerable part of his subsequent career exploring why things went so badly wrong (Zimbardo 2007; Zimbardo et al. 1999). Yet, the study is regularly trotted out together with Milgram’s (1974) and Humphreys’ (1970) as one of an unholy trinity of classical cases of unethical research that occurred without the free and informed consent of research participants in the social sciences, and that are routinely deployed as justification for our current systems of research ethics review in the social sciences (Sieber & Tolich 2013). Of course, Zimbardo’s prison was not a real prison and yet the mistreatment of students at Stanford University receives more prominence among social scientists than a long history of abuse of real prisoners in the name of scientific research.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Publisher: Routledge as part of Taylor & Francis
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/53534
Item Control Page Item Control Page