12 Angry Men Essay

1438 words - 6 pages

Twelve Angry Men is a classic movie depicting how one determined leader can alter an entire crowd. Through dedication, curiosity, and the pursuit for the truth he is able to persuade a group of twelve to second guess even themselves. Within this heterogynous group are a dozen different personalities - some of which were leaders and most of which were not.
     The strongest leader in this movie by far is the Architect in the White Suit. Right off from the beginning at the original vote the Architect stated clearly his position in the matter. Against the rest of the group he strongly held his ground and fought for what he believed. Most people in his position would have changed their opinion immediately after realizing that he was completely outnumbered. However he continued to argue his points and reiterate the reasons why “evidence” needed to be questioned. His mind was simply brilliant. As he sat there listening to the other jurors reasoning he always found a way to prove them wrong or make them question themselves. Whether it was through logic, mathematical reasoning, or questioning of evidence he seemed to always wow the other jurors. His strength as a leader is that he is a natural born one. He wasn’t trying to look smart or impress anyone. He simply was doing what he was born to do.
     He used both pushing and pulling tactics to influence his peers. His strongest tactic was the usage of rational persuasion. While other jurors were able to dismiss facts without consideration, he immediately noted a potential fault. Through the analysis of facts he was able to convince others to reconsider. One of the most notable discrepancies he proved was that of the witness across the street. Through common noises, known train speeds, and common knowledge he proved that the witness was anything but one.
     The architect also uses inspirational appeal to convince his colleagues. He makes the other jurors consider the humanity of the situation. A mans life is at stake and he realizes the impact that his decision as well the rest of theirs will have on the man. The importance of values is portrayed. Likewise he keeps his own position non-emotional stating that he will concur with the group about the guilt, but only if they can convince him that he should.
     Additionally, he uses consultation to try to help the group to come to a consensus. He seeks group participation to make the ultimate decision. Whereas others are set in their opinion perhaps based on the social normality of it (I.e. to fit in with the rest of the group), he is out to find the true belief of the individual juror. As with the inspirational appeal, he expresses his willingness to modify his decision based on what they discuss.
     Another influential leader is the Angry Father. He acted as the leader for the people who believed the defendant was guilty. He,...

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