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Student number: N7512546 Unit: JSB258 Assessment item: Short essay question number one Question: Which parts

of Grossman's and Zimbardo's theories best explain the behaviour of Trevor Haken? Due date: 16/03/2012 Word count: 440 words

Introduction The following will accurately identify theories from Grossman and Zimbarbo that are relevant to the Haken interview, and these relevant factors will be briefly discussed to demonstrate an understanding of how these factors best explain the behaviour of Haken. Grossmans theory: Group absolution Grossmans theory that best explains the behaviour of Haken is group absolution, which suggests that the influence of your peers is a primary factor that causes an individual to behave in an illegal and/or unethical manner. Several key factors underpinning Grossmans theory of group absolution will be used to explain Hakens behaviour Lauchs (2005). Zimbardos theory: The Lucifer effect Zimbardos Lucifer effect theory seeks to provide an explanation regarding what makes a good person engage in evil acts. Zimbardo explains this process as a character transformation of good people to perform evil acts in certain situations as a function of powerful situational forces (Zimbardo 2009). Therefore Zimbardo believes by understanding the following key factors: Dispositional (Bad apples), Situational (Bad Barrels), and Systemic (Bad barrel makers), one can explain the psychological dynamics of such transformations within the human character (Zimbardo 2009). Where was group absolution evident in Hakens behaviour? Several factors relating to group absolution can be used to explain Hakens behaviour. For example as stated within the Haken interview corrupt officers formed a brotherhood, and officers that refused to act in accordance with the brotherhoods corrupt practices were ostracized (Jones 2005). In addition Haken admitted to seeing no wrongdoing in engaging in minor acts of corruption for example, accepting kickbacks from tow truck drivers, he stated he just followed the lead (Jones 2005). However these minor acts of corruption slowly manifested into serious acts of corruption with Haken also stating going from uniform to plain clothes paved the way for a much larger scope of corruption, the further you climbed the ranks the more acceptable things became until you reach the point where anything is acceptable (Jones 2005). These examples evidently reflect key factors within the theory of group absolution such as, level of identification within group, proximity of the group, intensity of support, and numbers in immediate group Lauchs (2012).

Where was the Lucifer effect evident in Hakens Behaviour? The main factor of the Lucifer effect that best explains Hakens behaviour is the situational approach which suggests that good people are corrupted by the behavioural context in which powerful situational factors are at play (Zimbardo 2009). The corrupt police culture that surrounded Haken acted as the primary situational factor influencing Hakens corrupt behaviour, another influential factor was his blind obedience to authority in regards to his superior/supervisor Graham chook Fowler. Conclusion The content above has explained Hakens behaviour by using Grossmans theory of group absolution, and Zimbardos theory the Lucifer effect. This was achieved by linking the relevant factors of each theory to provide an understanding as to why Haken behaved in the manner he did throughought his police career. Reference list Jones, Caroline. 2005. Dead man talking. ABC (Broadcast October 10, 2005). Television program. Lauchs, Mark. JSB258 official corruption: Week 2 lecture notes. Accessed March 14, 2012, http://blackboard.qut.edu.au/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_tab_group_id=_2_1&url=%2F webapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Flauncher%3Ftype%3DCourse%26id%3D_86338_1 %26url%3D Zimbardo, Phillip. 2009. The Lucifer effect. Stanford: Stanford University. Video recording.