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Deviancy. The Psychology of Being Different by Jonathan L. Freedman

By Jonathan L. Freedman

Booklet by way of Jonathan L. Freedman, Anthony N. Doob

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Extra info for Deviancy. The Psychology of Being Different

Example text

In the past, we have found that it is extremely useful for a group to know how good people are at this so that the different parts of the task can be assigned most efficiently. Recently a test has been developed that is very good at predicting how good people are at this sort of thing. This test involves the writing of random numbers. Now it may seem to you that this is a pretty simple thing to do, but you will be surprised how hard it is to do. Obviously, anyone can write 54 C O N C E A L M E N T O F DEVIANCY random numbers for a short time —the test is to see how long you can write them and how many you can write.

It happens that the task that you will be working on requires a large number of triangles that are different from one another but all have the same perimeter. Each member of your group has worked, or will work, at this for a while so that we will get as many as possible. I think that you can probably see why we don't do this ourselves —as, if one or two people work at it, they all tend to be pretty much the same. Actually, the task is constructed so that the more the group has of these triangles, the easier it is for them to complete the task and also the more different kinds they have to work with, the easier it will be for everyone.

This means that we have no way of knowing if the deviants were deliberately picking deviants or if the nondeviants were, in fact, deliberately avoiding deviants. For the moment we shall assume that the deviants were trying to pick deviants but shall hold open the possibility that the nondeviants were also seeking out nondeviants or avoiding deviants. Hopefully additional research will clarify this point. Similar vs. Different Deviants. The next question is how these preferences are affected by whether the other deviants are similar or different.

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