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Welcome to the Social Psychology unit!

A black and white image of battalions marching down a street in strict, rectangular formations.
Throughout history, right up to the present day, humans have done terrible things to one another. Often, these actions take the form of a powerful group oppressing others. Is every single person in an oppressive group evil? We can guess that they're probably not—all people commit good and bad actions at different times.
So what motivates people to carry out acts of harm against others? How do oppressive and authoritarian societies come about in the first place; why do their members participate in the oppression; and how do they justify those acts of oppression to themselves? These are the questions we'll be digging into in this unit.
In this unit, you will:
  • Learn about psychological experiments that focus on group behaviors and compliance with authority
  • Read stories set in oppressive worlds, with characters who choose both to uphold and to resist oppression
  • Think about what makes people choose to follow the crowd or an authority figure
  • Watching videos that explain different approaches and strategies for reading
  • Reading and answering questions about literary and informational texts
  • Expanding your academic vocabulary
In order to answer the essential question: What can cause a person to act against their beliefs?

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