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Critical Analysis of Groupthink during Pearl Harbor

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Groupthink occurs within all body of workplaces and all stage no issue what profession you are in. If you are working with a chemical group of multitudes and a have one soul making the decisiveness for the better of the group. In this essay, I will give the reader a better understanding of what groupthink is and how it effects the outcome. Also, there will be some historical examples provided that reflect on the determination use of why group think is important and how it potentially caused some hasty and irrational decisions.

The definition of groupthink is “a mode of thinking people engages in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members striving for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action.” (Janis, 1982) The perception is that group think is displayed as a team movement which in act causes a higher decision rate. The part of group think is to be able to shuffle more outcome resolution and proper plan through complicated website. There are numerous prison terms in account where the use of groupthink caused a very successful outcome such as Off-white Oasis, the Alcove of Slob bed, and Annam State of war.

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A perfect example of groupthink is Pearl Harbor. “A most poignant example of an illusion of invulnerability involves the in-group around Admiral H. E. Kimmel, which failed to prepare for the possibility of a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor despite repeated warnings.” (James, 2010). Everyone had felt as if the Japanese wouldn’t attempt to make a blast towards American land. Even after multiple warnings people did not take it very seriously and just went on about their day as if nothing were to even occur. Little did they know this would be a day the world will never forget. This was a perfective tense example because it shows exactly how group think workings and what happens when you ignore important info. Since the Japanese were able to successfully blast the Pearl Harbor it left thousands dead and stunned.

A good example of when groupthink goes wrong would be the famous Kent State riots and shooting. Since the president of Kent State University had decided to resign the board of trustees had decided they would create a central decision making position. All the board of trustees were used to make decisions throughout the school without considering student opinion. (Hensley and Griffin, 1986) The board of trustees had decided to expand the gymnasium as a start. This triggered many student which didn’t want the gymnasium expanded and caused huge protests with students putting up tents on blanket hill. Even with all the protesting the board of trustees did not listen to students and continued down the path they wanted. Had the board of trustees conducted a vote and had all the students participate the situation would have never escalated to this point. This is a perfect example of what happens when one group makes the decision for a bigger party.

Throughout history large amounts individuals have been through something effecting their lives due to groupthink. Groupthink has played a role in so many events such as Pearl Harbor, Kent State riots, Vietnam War, Bay of Pigs, and plenty more through history. This is what can potentially happen when one person is left to decide for large population events. I discussed two events in this essay that shows you how groupthink has the potential to turn one situation completely around.

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Critical Analysis of Groupthink during Pearl Harbor. (2022, July 14). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 7, 2023, from
“Critical Analysis of Groupthink during Pearl Harbor.” Edubirdie, 14 Jul. 2022,
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Critical Analysis of Groupthink during Pearl Harbor [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Jul 14 [cited 2023 Dec 7]. Available from:
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