Monkeys and Bannanas
Researchers put six monkeys into a cage with a ladder and a bunch of bananas at the top. Each time a monkey began to climb the ladder, all the monkeys were sprayed with cold water. Eventually, the monkeys refused to climb the ladder. One monkey was removed and replaced with another monkey who had never undergone the cold water spray. When the new monkey tried to climb the ladder, the five original monkeys began to beat on him–thus keeping him from climbing the ladder. The original monkeys were conditioned–by the cold water spray–to not climb the ladder. All six original monkeys were eventually replaced by new monkeys that never experienced the cold water spray. Yet, the monkeys would not climb the ladder to get the bananas and would stop those that tried. They didn’t even know why. They were conditioned by the group to a specific response.