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Why Are We Obsessed with Cults?



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What is it about cults that captures the public imagination? Why are we so interested in the stories of Jonestown, Charles Manson, and Patty Hearst? There
are more cults than ever before, with more members. Up to 10,000 cults still exist today in the United States, according to psychologist Steve Eichel, a
recognized international cult expert and president of the International Cultic Studies Association. He outlined several ways to identify cults. CBS News 2-24-
This assignment fulfills/Supports:
Module objectives:
1,Recognize socialpsychology, social roles, group structure, and social cognition.
3.Identify differentsocial roles.
Course objectives:
4. Apply psychology principles to personal, social, and/or organizational issues.

For this Assignment, complete the following steps:
Step 1:
Watch the following video (caution strong language anddisturbing content) on the Jonestown Massacre.

Step 2:
You will write a paper (3 pages; title, body, reference).
2.In your body of the paper, answer the following questions on how cults form and how control begins and continues.
a. Can biology explain Jonestown? Think on this, what might predispose us to falling into cult behavior (thing about personality disorders).
b. What psychological tactics did Jim Jones use? Give an example.
c. What was Jim Jones mental health diagnosis? Do you agree with this are there any other diagnoses you would give Jim Jones?
d. How do cults affect the brain? Do you think different areas may become more or less responsive to this brainwashing?
e. How do cults start? If you were going to start your own cult, what would be the perfect environment to start with?
f. How do cults continue? Most cults end, some tragically. Why do they last as long as they do?


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