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CONFORMITY CommonLit Answers – FREE Access
Find the answer key for the topic “CONFORMITY” below:
Note: Be prepared to share your original ideas in a class discussion.
Discussion Questions & Answers
Following are our answers based on the questions provided:
Q.1. Why do you think older people are less susceptible to conformity?
Ans: When attempting to explain people’s susceptibility to conformity, a topic that is relevant to the subject is social acceptance. A person’s overall success in life can be heavily influenced by how socially accepted they are. The quality of the networks of people a person can rely on often represents the degree to which a person is socially accepted. In order to build networks and connections with people, there needs to be mutual respect and admiration between a person and his social networks and connections. In order to gain respect people must therefore conform to society in a way that is seen as respectable and admirable to others in order to sustain networks and connections.
Q.2. Can you think of any other instances in which conformity would be a good thing?
Ans: One instance in which conformity would be a good thing would be if societal pressures influenced people to conform in ways that benefit others. For example, if society frowned upon greed and most people were reluctant to build connections with greedy people then a person who wished to have more friends and acquaintances would conform through charitable giving. Since charity is generally helpful to greater society, conforming to a charitable ethic would be a good thing.
Q.3. What are some examples in history of the destructive power of conformity?
Ans: Throughout history, there are examples where conformity caused destruction and tragedy. The citizens of Nazi Germany conformed to the ideology of Adolf Hitler, and through their act of conformity they enabled Hitler’s regime to slaughter millions of people.
Another example of conformity causing destruction is the vaccine hesitancy promoted by politicians in the United States among many who were most susceptible to the Covid-19 virus. Many people who refused to get the vaccine ended up dying from the virus despite the possibility of being saved had they received the vaccine.
Q.4. What are the effects of following the crowd? Use evidence from this text, your own experience, and other literature, art, or history in your answer.
Ans: Following the crowd can give you a sense of belonging but it can also cost you individually. When you conform to others, you can usually hold on to social connections more easily. However, if you must hide the most vital and essential aspects of yourself in order to maintain social connections then you can lose all sense of identity. To illustrate, I once had a friend group where I was slowly influenced to take up habits and interests that were counter to my most essential beliefs. Conforming in such a way, at the cost of my most cherished beliefs and goals was too destructive, so I began to be myself and slowly lost all my closest friends.
Then I lived for a long time without close friends, and I became more in touch with my individuality. However, this too became destructive because I lost a sense of social identity that could help me grow as a person. Over time I was able to find a happy balance, and I was able to make friends with whom I could be myself and also be positively influenced. The effects of following the crowd are therefore dependent upon which crowd you follow and how much influence you have over the direction of the crowd. If you make sure to enter into good groups of people who respect your feedback and opinions then the effects of following the crowd can be healthy. If you are with an incompatible or malicious group of people, however, following the group can cause you to lose your sense of self and live a less fulfilling life.
Assessment Questions & Answers
Following are our answers based on the questions provided:
Q.1. Which of the following best describes the central idea of the text?
Ans: People conform in order to fit in based on societal pressure.
Q.2. Which of the following best explains the relationship between compliance, identification, and internalization?
Ans: Compliance occurs when people pretend to change their personal beliefs, while identification and internalization occur when people begin to believe other’s ideas.
Q.3. Explain what type of conformity the subjects in Muzafer Sherif’s moving light experiment were most likely experiencing, using evidence from the text to justify your answer.
Ans: The conformity most likely experienced by subjects in Muzaffar Sheriff’s Moving Light experiment was internalization.
Internalization is defined as a group of people sharing similar thoughts and behaviors purely with little or no influence from one part on the other, without falsifying their behavior just to collect The type of affinities to adopt. This type of affinity is seen in those who participated in Muzaffar Sherif’s Moving Light Trial.
Conformity means that people make their beliefs attitudes behaviors or perceptions more conformable to those of the group to which they aspire to belong or to which they desire approval. It is the process of changing to Conformity has important social implications and continues to be actively investigated.
Q.4. PART A: What does the phrase “spiral of silence” mean as it is used in paragraph 8?
Ans: a result of conformity in which no one speaks because the group norm is to avoid confrontation.
Q.5. PART B: Which phrase from paragraph 5 best supports the answer to PART A?
Ans: “people who have different opinions are afraid to speak or act on them.”
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In CommonLit, “CONFORMITY” is one of the students’ favorite chapters written by Charlotte Harrison for grade 9 students.
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