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Shock to a conspecific as an aversive stimulus


This experiment confirms and extends an earlier finding that a hungry rhesus monkey (O) will avoid securing food if this subjects another monkey (SA) to electric shock. In the present series this “sacrificial” behavior was manifested in 6 of 10 animals independently of the relative position of the two animals in a dominance hierarchy. It was also found that while prior shock of the O resulted in inhibition of responding following the introduction of shock to the SA, this variable was not correlated with the final manifestation of a sacrificial pattern.


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This work was supported by Grant 1719 from the Mental Health Fund of the Illinois Department of Public Welfare and USPHS Grant M 2312. Eduard H. Schludermann assisted in the collection of data.

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Wechkin, S., Masserman, J.H. & Terris, W. Shock to a conspecific as an aversive stimulus. Psychon Sci 1, 47–48 (1964).

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  • Dominance Hierarchy
  • Aversive Stimulus
  • Consecutive Session
  • Blue Stimulus
  • Mental Health Fund