Breaking Norms Paper INTRODUCTION: Giving up a seat to an elderly on a bus, sitting down in your seat silently when the teacher enters the room, and even going to sleep at night and waking up in the morning are all social norms. We might not recognize it, but we follow social norms in our day-to-day activities constantly. Social norms are society-based beliefs on what is acceptable and unacceptable in our society. Breaking a social norm usually leads to confusion or disapproval.
It might not be against the legal law but it might be against the social law. Therefore, for my experiment, I decided to break a social norm by ursting out in song on the shuttle to school. My song of choice was I Believe I Can Fly by R. Kelly. SETTING: The setting of my experiment took place on the shuttle bus from the park and ride parking lot to Duncan Hall on the SJSU campus during the day around 1 1 :OOam. There were perhaps around 8-10 people on the shuttle during the experiment, not including the bus driver.
EXPECTATION: My expectation was to get disapproving looks and probably feelings of annoyance. I wouldn’t even be surprised if someone told me to “shut up” since my voice sounds similar to a dying whale when I try to sing. In a similar situation, as the control group, I myself might Just try to ignore the situation or muffle a laugh depending on how it triggers me. Sometimes when things are out of the norm I may start laughing because it feels random or I may avoid the situation because it might be awkward.
And I do it because it does not fit the social norm so I expect over people in society to do the same or disapproval in a way. RESULTS: The results in turn turned out to be that people did actually turn to stare at me. One person laughed and the others Just glanced back and forth at each other. Another person asked, “Having a good morning? ” as a rhetorical question to the oddness of me singing I believe I could fly without any background music. It was interesting to see and kind of embarrassing for me myself.
But I found the results to be an overall questionable response as to why I was Just singing loudly at random and breaking a social norm. CONCLUSION: In conclusion to my experiment I have recognized the impact of not following the social norms. I realize that there are set rules that may not be concrete but that people abide by nonetheless and if you break them you will feel some sort of social epercussion. Even if it not offensive, there is a slight stigma in doing things that are not considered “normal”.
Perhaps the people on the shuttle think I’m crazy or abnormal instead of me Just being in the mood to sing. Because there are social rules where there are appropriate times to do things and not do things. In my case, singing loudly in the middle of silence was not considered a norm and so I was mocked a bit in fun. Sometimes if you think in depth about situations you realize that you are not completely free and liberated without at least Judgment being passed. BN paper By alishasthot