The movie 12 Angry Men by Reginald Rose is about a jury discussing
a murder case. Below is a small section of the screenplay from early in the film:
We have a first-degree murder charge here and if we vote the accused guilty we’ve got to send him to the chair. That’s mandatory.
Anybody doesn’t want to vote? [He looks around the table. There is no answer.] Okay, then just remember that this has to be 12 to nothing either way. That’s the law. Ok, are we ready? All those voting guilty raise your hands.
[Seven or eight hands go up immediately. Several others go up more slowly. Everyone looks around the table. There are two hands not raised, NO. 9’s and NO. 8’s. NO. 9’s hand goes up slowly now as the foreman counts.]
Nine… ten … eleven… That’s eleven for guilty. Okay. Not guilty? [NO. 8’s hand is raised.] One. Right. Okay. Eleven to one, guilty. Now we know where we are.
[sarcastically] Somebody’s in left field. [To NO. 8] You think he’s not guilty?
[quietly]. I don’t know.
[to NO. 8]. Well, do you believe his story?
I don’t know whether I believe it or not. Maybe I don’t.
With this segment of the transcript in mind, please answer the following questions:
(1) What form of social influence did the foreman use in the process of making a decision? Name it and explain specifically what action was taken to make use of that form of social influence.
(2) What decision rule is in place? Name it and explain specifically how that decision rule influences the likelihood of the group changing its perspective or considering multiple perspectives in its decision-making process.
(3) Explain the value of Juror Number 8 to the group changing its perspective or considering multiple perspectives in its decision-making process.