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Influential Factors Essay

1020 words - 5 pages

Influential Factors
Have you ever heard of the phrase, "there's a method to the madness?” Each and every day, people are faced with different life choices that need to be made, some more important than others.  Some of these decisions can range from what we will wear or eat, to whether or not we will attend class that day. Regardless of their importance, humans have free will to make choices in our everyday lives. But are there underlying factors that influence our decision making?  Although humans have "free will", there are social, environmental, and biological factors that can influence our decision making and actions in everyday life. Humans at times may find themselves influenced by ...view middle of the document...

William Shakespeare demonstrated the power of influence in the tragedy Othello.  In The Garden of the Castle, Othello allows the influence of Iago to make him believe that his Lieutenant Cassio is having an affair with his wife.  Iago plants seeds of doubt in Othello's mind about his wife's fidelity and uses Othello's jealousy to earn his position as Lieutenant in the end.  Iago (1604) states that "That cuckold lives in bliss Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger, But, oh, what damned minutes tell he o'er Who dotes, yet doubts--suspect, yet soundly loves!"(1604, p.285).  I feel that Iago is saying that a man is in a worse situation when he does not know his partner is being unfaithful, versus knowing what he is dealing with completely.  Iago (1604) also stated, "In Venice they do let God see the pranks, they date not show their husbands. Their best conscience is not to leave 't undone, but keep't unknown." (1604, p.286). This statement in my opinion was used to plant more doubt in the mind of Othello by basically saying that women keep secrets from their husbands. But why would Othello let another man put doubts in his mind about his wife? This is an example of the power of influence because even though Othello had the free will to trust and believe his wife, he chose to allow the influence of another individual to sway his view and cause him to be suspicious. Other factors that can influence decisions can be linked to environmental and biological causes.  If we are in school we may act differently than we would act if we were in the comfort of our own home with our friends.  Biologically, some of our actions may be influenced because of genetics.  Laura Kicklighter (2013) stated in her lecture at Lynchburg College that race and gender are two biologically deterministic factors which may influence what we choose to do with our free will.  Kicklighter (2013) also states that these forces are...

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