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Title:The Production of Nonconformity Within an Experimental Setting
Author(s):Rigney, Ernest Greene, Jr.
Department / Program:Sociology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Sociology, General
Abstract:Two experiments addressed the question: What must a researcher do to produce nonconformity? In the first, three verbal strategies were used to produce nonconformity. Metainstructions were hypothesized to be the most effective strategy, followed by forewarning and challenge-insult. Seventy four subjects were assigned to a control condition or one of three treatment conditions. Control subjects were given 14 imperative instructions. Remaining subjects received these instructions prefaced by metainstructions, a forewarning, or a challenge-insult. Nonconformity was judged to occur if subjects did not complete the imperative instructions. None of the hypotheses were supported by the results.
The failure of the first experiment was re-examined. Alterations were made in the conceptualization and composition of metainstructions. Proscriptions, another variable, were incorporated into the experimental design. Three hypotheses were generated. Metainstructions and proscriptions were hypothesized to produce more nonconformity than a control condition. Metainstructions were hypothesized to produce more "active nonconformity," whereas proscriptions were hypothesized to produce more "tacit nonconformity."
In the second experiment, thirty-six subjects were randomly assigned to one of three conditions. Control subjects received seven imperative instructions. Other subjects received metainstructions intermixed with the imperative instructions. Remaining subjects received proscriptions prior to the imperative instructions. The results supported the three hypotheses. Metainstructions and proscriptions produced more nonconformity (73%) than the control condition (4%). Metainstructions produced more active nonconformity (70%) than did proscriptions (16%). Proscriptions produced more tacit nonconformity (84%) than did metainstructures (30%).
Two conclusions are warranted. First, symbolic activity produces nonconformity. Both metainstructions and proscriptions produce nonconformity. Second, active nonconformity is distinguishable from tacit nonconformity. Further research will determine whether or not these sources of and distinctions between types of nonconformity can be sustained.
Issue Date:1982
Description:138 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1982.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8302970
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1982

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