iPod People

Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig star in the film 'The Invasion' released on the 12 October. The film is about a mysterious epidemic that changes the behaviour of human beings. When people go to sleep they are transformed. People begin to change, they begin to think, feel, and act exactly the same. Kidman plays a psychiatrist who finds out that the epidemic is caused by a virus from outer space.

This is a remake of the film the Invasion of the Body Snatchers released in 1956.

In this film people are killed and replaced by perfect replicas grown from plant like pods. These plant like pods are an alien race that want to take over the world. Some film historians think that this film is about America's fear of communism. The 'alien' pods are communists, the pod people represent what would happen to people if communism spread to America. Other film historians have argued that the film is about American paranoia of communism and is an attack on Mcarthy and his anti-communist witchhunt. The film is really an attack on mass conformity.

The film clip below is the trailer of the original film: The Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

The 1950's are regarded by historians as one of the most conformist decades in American history. People dressed alike, thought alike, and behaved in very similar ways. Solomon Asch conducted a lot of his research on majority influence during this period and was shocked by the high levels of conformity he found.

Some psychologists have argued that his research tells us more about the culture of America in the 1950's than about human behaviour at all times.

The time and place when the research was carried out might have affected the findings." (Cardwell)
The time and place the research was carried out may have acted as an uncontrolled and uncontrollable variable: it may have acted as a confounding variable.

Perrin and Spencer repeated Asch's study in England in 1980. They found much lower levels of conformity. Only one student conformed on 396 trials. Nicholson et al conducted similar studies to Asch in 1985 and again found much lower levels of conformity. This has led some psychologists to argue that social psychological research tells us more about the historical and cultural climate of the countries these studies are conducted in than about universal psychological processes.

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