Fascists may have used marching together to bend millions to their will

February 5th, 2009 - 1:42 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Feb 5 (ANI): Marching in unison may have been used by Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini to bend millions of people to their fascist will, suggests a new study.

Dr Scott Wiltermuth, of Stanford University in California and colleagues have found that if groups perform tasks in unison, such as marching, dancing and chanting, they show more loyalty towards each other and are less likely to go against the norm.

The research has been published in the New Scientist.

“It makes us feel as though we”re part of a larger entity, so we see the group’’s welfare as being as important as our own,” the Telegraph quoted the researcher, as saying.

To reach the conclusion, Wiltermuth’’s team separated 96 people into four groups who were then asked to perform different tasks together.

They included listening to a song while silently mouthing the words, singing along, singing and dancing, or listening to different versions of the song so that they sang and danced out of synchronisation.

In a second experiment, when asked to decide whether to stick with the group or strive for personal gain, those in the non-synchronised group behaved less loyally than the rest.

The research helps explain why fascist leaders, amongst others, use organised marching and chanting to whip crowds into a frenzy of devotion to their cause, say researchers. (ANI)

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