I'm wanting to read more about a certain human behavior, but I am not sure what the proper term for it is, so some of the things I am finding aren't what I am looking for. I'm interested in how Humans will often "follow the leader" and act as sheep, believing what they're told without applying much critical thinking. I thought this was called Herd Mentality, but Wikipedia describes that as:
Herd mentality implies a fear-based reaction to peer pressure which makes individuals act in order to avoid feeling "left behind" from the group
That is close to what I am thinking about. However Wikipedia relates Herd Mentality to Group intelligence and Wisdom of the crowd... which is ironic as those are the exact opposite of what I am looking for.
Examples of the behavior I am thinking of:
- Sometimes high-rep users on Stack Exchange sites post poor questions or answers. Often these get upvotes even though they're incorrect, because people "follow the leader" and don't think about the actual answer.
- Religious leaders often influence their congregations on how to vote, and many members will vote that way even though what they're voting for may not really be what they believe it because they don't think about what they're voting for so they don't realize it.
- As an extreme example: Many good, moral people somehow shut off their ability to think logically and supported Hitler and the Holocaust.
What is the name for Human's tendency to follow a leader blindly, without thinking? Is this an actual psychological phenomenon and if so, what papers could I read to learn more about it?