The effect of legitimacy of a request and compliance versus noncompliance on the evaluation of others1


  • James E. R. Luginbuhl

    1. University of North Carolina
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    • 2

      Formerly James E Robinson The author is now at North Carolina State University Requests for reprints should be sent to James E R Luginbuhl, Department of Psychology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27607

  • 1

    This study was supported in part by United States Public Health Service Grant 3T01 MH 07325–07 The author is indebted to John Schopler for guidance through all phases of this research and for critical readings of the manuscript


Eighty male undergraduates read a supposedly true interaction between two workers in a business firm, in which A made a request of B The status of B relative to A, the legitimacy of the request, and compliance versus noncompliance by B were varied It was found (a) that compliers to legitimate requests and noncompliers to illegitimate requests were liked better than noncompliers to legitimate requests or compliers to illegitimate requests, (b) that noncompliers were seen as more internally controlled than were compliers, and (c) that individuals may respond to an atypical situation by imposing upon it a consistent internal structure Status had little effect The data were regarded as clarifying a previous experiment by Ring (1964) as well as suggesting further research