- Setting Up
The question now is how to change our institutions so that they promote human values rather than destroy them. Sadly, in the decades since this experiment took place, prison conditions and correctional policies in the United States have become even more punitive and destructive. The worsening of conditions has been a result of the politicization of corrections, with politicians vying for who is toughest on crime, along with the racialization of arrests and sentencing, with African-Americans and Hispanics overrepresented. The media has also contributed to the problem by generating heightened fear of violent crimes even as statistics show that violent crimes have decreased.
There are more Americans in prisons than ever before. According to a Justice Department survey, the number of jailed Americans more than doubled during the past decade, with over 2 million people in jail or prison by 2005. To learn more about prisons, the Stanford Prison Experiment, and parallels with recent events such as the abuse of Iraqi prisoners, please consult the bibliography below or visit the Related Links page.
- Zimbardo, P. G. (2007). The Lucifer Effect: Understanding how good people turn evil. New York: Random House. [See also LuciferEffect.com]
- Schwartz, J. (May 6, 2004). Simulated prison in '71 showed a fine line between 'normal' and 'monster.' New York Times, p. A20.
- Zimbardo, P. G. (2004). A situationist perspective on the psychology of evil: Understanding how good people are transformed into perpetrators (pp. 21-50). In A. G. Miller (Ed.), The social psychology of good and evil. New York: Guilford Press.
- Zimbardo, P. G., Maslach, C., & Haney, C. (2000). Reflections on the Stanford Prison Experiment: Genesis, transformations, consequences. In T. Blass (Ed.), Obedience to authority: Current Perspectives on the Milgram paradigm (pp.193-237). Mahwah, N.J.: Erlbaum.
- Haney, C., & Zimbardo, P. G. (1998). The past and future of U.S. prison policy: Twenty-five years after the Stanford Prison Experiment. American Psychologist, 53, 709-727.
- Zimbardo, P. G., Haney, C., Banks, W. C., & Jaffe, D. (1973, April 8). The mind is a formidable jailer: A Pirandellian prison. The New York Times Magazine, Section 6, 36, ff.
- Haney, C., Banks, W. C., & Zimbardo, P. G. (1973). Interpersonal dynamics in a simulated prison. International Journal of Criminology and Penology, 1, 69-97.
- Zimbardo, P. G. (1971). The power and pathology of imprisonment. Congressional Record. (Serial No. 15, October 25, 1971). Hearings before Subcommittee No. 3, of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, 92nd Congress, First Session on Corrections, Part II, Prisons, Prison Reform and Prisoners' Rights: California. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.