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Group Dynamics Paper.

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Introduction

Justin Smith Group Dynamics Paper 2/18/03 Group Definition A group is the interaction of two or more independent people, usually working together to achieve a goal. This group consists of "12 angry men," put together as a jury. Their goal to decide if the defendant is guilty or not guilty. Since these men did not choose to be put together, and had no prior association with one another before placement into this selected group, various contrasting personalities that both support and clash are working toward this goal of finding the defendant unanimously guilty or not guilty as a final verdict for the court. Such contrasts of personality creates a conflicting atmosphere in the courtroom. Such dynamic interactions are what makes the group development interesting. Group Development & Problems Throughout the movie a group development occurs where jurors question their vote due to the persuasion of other group members as new ways of looking at the facts or emotions of the case are analyzed amongst the group or by inner, silent thinking of the individual jurors. Group development is the changes that occur in the group from first meeting to coming up with an unanimous verdict (the conclusion). Much emotion and development of thinking occurs as time proceeds and the juror's individual thinking is challenged. This is the development of what will create a final, more thought out decision of the group. Character & Roles Roles are the titles that distinguish members of a group from one another. All members of this group are jury members. Although each jury member has an equal role not all jury members are created equal. ...read more.

Middle

Most Respected...(so maybe most liked)....the old man....(some blue and some white collars like him) Social Influence: conformity Social influence is interpersonal processes that change the thoughts, feelings, or behaviors of another person. In the movie, 12 Angry Men, the jurors who think the defendant is guilty are trying to persuade or change the feelings of the jurors who think he is not guilty. They are using social influence to try and change their minds. To be more specific, we consider different types of social influence. These types include concepts about conformity, majority influence, and minority influence. Conformity is a change in behavior or belief as a result of real or imagined group pressure. The first preliminary vote by the jury yields an 11 to 1 vote in favor of guilty. Why was this? Was this because most of the jury members thought he was guilty from the beginning, and people who were undecided felt they should vote guilty because of imagined group pressure? Most of the jurors when asked why they voted the way they did said; they were just "sure he was guilty", or because "the evidence points right to him." This may be true for some of the jurors, but most, perhaps unconsciously, felt pressure to conform to what others were saying. Juror number 8 is the one and only juror that voted not guilty. Henry Fonda plays juror number 8 in the movie. He is in his middle 30's, average size, short dark hair, and is an architect. Juror number 8 felt all the other jurors voted guilty without even thinking about their decisions, juror #8 suggested that they talk about it before jumping to conclusions. ...read more.

Conclusion

Majorities seem to possess this kind of thinking, as is the case with 12 Angry Men. The majority members in the jury focused only on the testimony given by the witnesses. They did not consider any possible other alternatives. When it came to the witnesses, their testimonies were undoubtedly right and there was no reason to consider anything else about it. Divergent thinking occurs when we start with a problem and rather than look for one answer, we instead generate many ideas or possible solutions. The minority influence grew in support as the movie went on because members of the jury started to use divergent thinking when considering the trial. Instead of being focused on only one solution, they were considering other possibilities that could have explained what happened the night of the murder. When the jury considers the woman across the street that says she saw the boy kill his father, convergent thinkers assume everything is accurate in her testimony, because there is no other solution in their minds. What juror number 8 does is help the jury see another side to the story. Could the woman see the murder through a moving train at night when she was in bed? Convergent thinkers would say absolutely, while divergent thinkers would consider other possible scenarios. Juror #8 just wanted everyone to think about any other possibilities. In this case, the divergent thinkers noticed that she wore eyeglasses by the indentations on the sides of her nose. They then think about the fact that most people don't go to sleep with their glasses on. So they wonder how the woman could have accurately seen the murder and murderer. Maybe she did see the murder perfectly, but now there is some reasonable doubt. ...read more.

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