Home - News - What's New - Quick Map - Site Map - Search - Contact


Debunking the Myth of Mind-Control

William Sims Bainbridge

Synthesis of researches done. Seven major flaws with the programming or brainwashing perspective.


Diane Richardson <referen@bway.net>

07 Apr  97

http://x13.dejanews.com/getdoc.xp?AN=231570372

From the book "The Sociology of Religious Movements," by William Sims Bainbridge. (New York: Routledge, 1997)
 

As soon as deprogramming became widely publicized, social and behavioral scientists began criticizing its scientific premises as well as its ethical propriety. Bromley and Shupe (1981: 211) observe, "The centerpiece of the anticultists' allegations is that cults brainwash their members through some combination of drugging, hypnosis, self-hypnosis, chanting or lecturing, and deprivation of food, sleep, and freedom of thought. If this argument were true, the new religions would not have such a sorry recruitment record, the defection rate among those who do join would not be so high as it is, individual members could not be counted upon to work with the zeal they do, and ex-members would not be able to recall in such exquisite detail how they were brainwashed. Social scientists have largely repudiated the concept of brainwashing as the anticultists have used it. Certainly it is possible to break people down physically and psychologically through coercive techniques. But there is no evidence that people so abused will show the kind of positive motivation and commitment that converts to the new religions manifest."

There are at least seven major flaws with the programming or brainwashing perspective.

  • First, it is not clear that effective non-biological techniques for controlling a person's mind exist at all, and the chief classic case of alleged brainwashing of American prisoners in the Korean War resulted in few if any successes (Schein et al. 1961).

  • Second, a very high proportion of people who attend some activities at new religious movements fail to join (Barker 1984).

  • Third, substantial numbers of long-term members of new religious movements leave of their own volition (Bainbridge 1982, 1984a; Wright 1983).

  • Fourth, many researchers have carried out long-term observational research inside a variety of new religious movements, including all those frequently accused of brainwashing, and their reports do not fit the brainwashing model (Bainbridge 1978; Taylor 1983).

  • Fifth, sociologists have developed some highly plausible theoretical models of how people join new religious movements, and they all combine several factors, notably the motivations of the individual and the structure of social relations around the individual, so there seems no need for the brainwashing hypothesis.

  • Sixth, the concept of brainwashing seems designed as a rhetoric to discredit new religious movements and to excuse the individual of any responsibility for joining them. Thus it has the effect of legitimating action against the group or individual that in any other context would be considered a violation of civil rights (Bromley 1983; Kelley 1983).

  • Seventh, the brainwashing rhetoric is "anticollectivistic and antitotalistic." (Richardson and Kilbourne 1983), assuming that a mentally healthy person must be autonomous and failing to recognize the importance of religion and community in human society (Hargrove, 1983).

 


Defense Introduction - Announcement - William's Sins Bainbridge - Timothy Miller - Hunts Attack - Robert Jay Lifton - Pattern of Defense - Loaded Language - Margaret Singer - DSM -1V - Clark's Defense -Kaplan and Saddock - Sociologist Vs Psychologist - Milieu Control - Hugglung's Reaction  Salibo on Singer - APA Statement - The Rabbits Foot



Random Quote :

Disclaimer :

This web site is NOT created by a Scientologist. It is created by a Scientology EX-MEMBER who is critical of Scientology. However, this ex-member is ALSO critical of the anti-Scientology movement. This does not make him a Scientologist, nor a defender of Scientology.

Quick Map :

About Myths Bigotry Anti-Cultism Criticism Third Way Links
Home
Site map
Search
What's New
Contact

Story
Q&A

 

Overview
2Questions
3Types
What

Doctrine
Xenu
Gays

Control
Kills
McPherson
Bashaw
Manson
RPF

Harrassment
Bomb
Sporgeries
Earthlink
Profit
Legal

 

Logic
Cat
Critic

 

Attacks
Clams
Hate
Christmas
Invasion
Trolling
Harassment
Violence
Award
OSA


Dissenters
Attacks
IRC
Plants
ARS

Tenets
Mind-Control
Subliminal
ACM

Discrimination
Jews
Kids
Germany
France
Trafalgar
Deprogramming

Who's Who
Cooper
Minton
Henson
Hartwig
Who

 

Experiences
Pro&Con
Dream

Questions
What Is?
Works?
Scam?

Testimonies
Sasha
Robin
Unindoctrinated

Cultism
Mirrors
Manhatan

The Tech
Key
Medical
Excalibur

Celebrities
Cruise
Celebrities

 

Scholars
Article
FBI
Papers

Moderates

Critics
Rebecca
Diane
Peter
DeadAgent1
Judy
Newbies

Ex-Members
Wolf
Jack
Claire
David
Kymus
Bernie
Interviews 

Scientologists
Enzo
Freddie
RonsAmigo
Wonderflur
Whippersnapper

Scientologists Speak
Freddie
EJ

 

ACM
Personal
Pathless