Paired texts: The Milgram Experiment
by Saul McLeod
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
The Limits of Empathy
- David Brooks
In his opinion piece “The Limits of Empathy,” David Brooks discusses what it means to be empathetic and whether or not empathy can influence us to act morally.Pair "The Milgram Experiment" with "The Limits of Empathy" to provide students with additional background information about the Milgram Experiments that David Brooks references in his opinion piece. Ask students to consider why Brooks would choose to use this as an example as he makes his argument about the limitations of empathy. How does "Milgram's Agency Theory" explain how humans behave in different social situations?
The Stanford Prison Experiment
- Saul McLeod
The Stanford Prison Experiment was conducted by Phillip Zimbardo in 1971. By organizing an exercise that simulated prison life, Zimbardo intended to discover how quickly people conformed to the roles of guard and prisoner. While many people thought that brutality reported among American prison guards had to do with personalities, some thought it had to do with the prison environment.Pair "The Stanford Prison Experiment" with “The Milgram Experiment” to allow students to further discuss what makes “good” people do bad things, and how corrupts.
The Third Wave
- CommonLit Staff
The Third Wave was an experimental social movement created by high school history teacher Ron Jones in 1967 to explain how the German populace could accept the actions of the Nazi regime during the Second World War. While he taught his students about Nazi Germany during his "Contemporary World History" class, Jones found it difficult to explain how the German people could accept the actions of the Nazis, and decided to create a social movement as a demonstration of the appeal of fascism. As the movement grew outside his class and began to number in the hundreds, Jones began to feel that the movement had spiraled out of control.Pair “The Milgram Experiment” with “The Third Wave Experiment” and ask students to compare the results of each experiment, and identify the factors that led to the Holocaust.
The Scramble for Africa
- Mike Kubic
This informational text summarizes the European and American colonization and plundering of Africa, as well as Africans’ resistance and eventual independence movements.Pair “The Scramble for Africa” with “The Milgram Experiments” and ask students to discuss the theme of obeying orders that hurt others, thinking specifically in regards to “The Scramble for Africa” about King Leopold II’s orders and their effects on the Congolese population.
What Made Aldrich Ames Tick?
- Mike Kubic
Why did Aldrich Ames, former C.I.A. agent, betray his country to spy for the K.G.B.?Pair The Milgram Experiment” with “What Made Aldrich Ames Tick” to investigate why people do bad things. Does Ames feel responsible for his actions? As a double agent, is he swept up in someone else’s agenda or does he remain autonomous? What made betrayal easy for Ames? What made harm easy for the participants in the Milgram experiment?