#17 – Prejudice
Public opinion polls show a steady decline in negative evaluation of minority groups after WWII, but
racial conflicts show moderate reduction
Categorization: tendency to put stimuli into different categories how does that influence prejudice
How do we form impression of other? Fiske and Neuberg’s Continuum Model
Start with category based theory driven, top down process.
Categorize people based on salient feature/big 3 (age, sex gender)
Easy, effortless and automatic
Brewer’s Dual Process Model
Involves automatic (put people in categories) and controlled processes. If the individual
is relevant to the goal you’re trying to meet in the situation? Is no, you stop. If yes, then
initiate more controlled processes and incorporate new info to modulate initial
Function of motivation and cognitive capacity (time and mental resources)
Require few cog resources
Cannot be stopped voluntarily
Occur outside of conscious awareness
Initiated intentionally: is this person relevant
Requires considerable cog resources
Can be stopped voluntarily
Operate within conscious awareness
Devine’s model of prejudice (1989)
Distinction between knowledge of stereotypes beliefs and accuracy
Everyone know the stereotype but what distinguish high and low prejudice
people is whether they believe the stereotype is correct or not.
What distinguishes high and low prejudice people?
Everyone know the stereotype: knowledge acquire in childhood and is overlearn
because of socialization
Info in available in memory and can be automatically activated
(low prejudice) Rejection of stereotype results from non-prejudicial beliefs that
are acquired later in socialization
Less overlearned therefore requires operation of controlled process
Inhibition is a controlled process that requires:
o Cog capacity
Automatic stereotype activation is equally in low and high prejudice people but
they differ in the level of controlled processing (LP tried to inhibit the info) Study 1: high vs. low prejudice
White intro psych student
List component of stereotype of Blacks in America (not interested in personal
Complete Modern Racism Scale
Results: both high and low prejudice knew the stereotype, no difference
Study 2: people know the stereotype and it can be activated in different situations.
Automatic process is the same for all, but the controlled is higher for low prejudice
Used a perceptual vigilance task: identify location of stimuli to prime
Impression formation task: read a paragraph and form an impression
Check 1: To make sure it was unconscious they had to guess the word that had
come up (1.67% hit rate)
Check 2: recognition of the words
Results: high prime: more likely to apply to stereotype and produce more
stereotypic consistent impression, but no effect with the control
Both high and low prejudice: both get the stereotype activated. High prejudice
people wrote down more negative things that low prejudice people (stereotype
activated but can control what to write)
Socially shared beliefs about groups
Attitude towards the group
What is automatically activated for low prejudice?
Culturally shared stereotype
Fazio: attitude: mental associated between an object and a person’s summary evaluation of that
Not knowledge about what people believe in general but personal evaluations
If association is strong, evaluation associated with object is automatically activated upon
encountering the object. (Attitude will be automatically activated)
Automatic activation of attitudes:
Prime snake (out of conscious awareness)
Then show words and responds to bad and good words.
If snake activated the negative attitude you should be quicker to respond to bad
Prime black and white faces
Identical procedure as snake. If show a white face respond to positive words
faster than negative words.
Look at reaction time when primed with a black face slow on positive and fast
on negatives. What predicts actual behavior?
Interaction with a black experimenters (friendliness of participant)
o Automatic attitude (implicit attitudes do influence our behavior)
Rodney King verdict
o MRS not automatic attitudes. More of a controlled process
Implicit vs explicit attitudes
Implicit might be what you think (spontaneous/automatic) while explicit requires more
of a controlled process
Explicit measures were more predicting on whether they though he was guilty or not
Implicit measures affected how you would complete words.
What makes a person low in prejudice?
Prejudice is a function of the representation of the category in one’s mind
Chronic accessibility vs. contextual activation (you can primer categories to influence behavior)
When chronic lows are primer with negative stereotype that can produce negative evaluations
High prejudice people were affected the most by the contextual prime.
Is prejudice inevitable?
See a picture of an elder man and asked to write a paragraph about him.
Suppression of thoughts
Control (no instructions)
Everyone but controls decreased their levels of stereotypically
Suppression of though showed a rebound effect when asked to look at words
related to the stereotype
#18 – Prejudice II: the case of sexism
Study 1: treating women as sex objects – McKenzie-Mohr & Zanna
Does gender schematic processing lead to prejudices views and behavior towards women?
Self-schemata: knowledge structures to understand own behavior. What kind of person we are.
Influences how we process info about the self and others.
Search for info about other that is related to the self. (selective attention, encoding and
retrieval of info)
Gender Schema theory revised
Who is gender schematic (sex typed): men who endorse only sex related attributes.
Prime gender schema in schematic and aschematic men and record interaction with women Schematic processing resulted on sexism”
Behavioral: behavior during interaction
Cognitive: recall and response time for woman’s physical features
1. Censorship study: measure attitudes about censorship. Prostitute vs. house of commons
2. University life interview: factors that made transition into uni difficult (interview by a
3. Passage of time on memory: what kind of info male remember the most about the
interviewer (physical, non-physical and what she said) measure interpersonal distance
Interviewer rating: how much would they look at their body? How sexually motivated
did they seem?
Prime only worked on schematic men (sexual motivation, interpersonal distance,
and remembered only physical characteristics).
Professional recall: very little from prime schematic males, but more from
When interacting with female, there’s multiple schemas to choose from, it’s possible to
prime particular schemas. Priming schema was most effecting on schematic men
(person x primer interaction)
Affect info that they’re encoding and remembering
Behavioral effects of priming men to view women as sexual objects
Recency: effects of the prime/temporary accessibility: contextual activation induces
perceiver to interpret events consistent with momentarily activated constructs
Frequency of activation: chronic accessibility: frequently activated constructs are more
likely to affect judgment
Are the effects of temporary and chronic accessibility on sexual objectification additive
(independent) or interactive)
Pre-measure tendency to be sexist: Likelihood to sexually harass scale (how likely you would act
in certain situations)
Brought high and low likelihood to sexually harass
Primed by sexist ads and control
Word for lexical decision task: sexist vs. non-sexists word.
Prime indeed made response time faster for sexist words (increased cognitive
accessibility) but also inhibited cognitive accessibility of non-sexist words.
“Help interview and evaluate a female job candidate”
14 Qs, 7 more sexists (personal, stereotypic, etc)
Measured proximity, sexualized behaviour (sex staring or motivation), memory about
appearance and qualification, competence, attractiveness and hireability.
Accessibility effects Chronic and Contextual (prime): both had sexist questions, increase proximity
and sexual behaviour. Increase in chronic, while increase in friendliness and
decrease in competence and qualification recollection
Hireability was the only interactive effect: highly like to sexually harass and
primed with the sexist ad were more likely to say hire her
Does stereotyping need to be overt to undermine behaviour?
Interacting with sexist man: Sexist behaviour cue women that they’ll be undervalued and
treated with the stereotype. This triggers stereotype threat which undermines their behaviour.
Make engineers students interact with female confederate
Conversation about engineering more sexist men exhibit more subtle dominance and
Male and female engineer student dyads
Conversation about engineering male sexism predicted women test’s scores.
Women in sexist condition indicate greater attraction for partner and had more positive
feeling about interactions. (attraction and feelings don’t explain performance effects)
Perception of dominance and interest didn’t predict performance.
Sexist behaviour doesn’t need to make overt/unpleasant impression
What effect does objectification have on women?
Effects on body dissatisfaction – effects on self- perception
Primed men and women to prime objectification of women
Women: rate their body size. Prime with sexist ads, see their body bigger
No interaction with male and sexist ideas.
Self-objectification theory: when people’s body parts are separated from their identity and they’re
reduces to instruments.
American culture socializes women to self-objectify (view themselves as objects)
Value and think about body form a third person perspective (how society would view thme)
Creates excessive appearance monitoring
Creates body shame (cannot live up to certain standards) restrained eating
Consumed attentional resources diminishes mental performance
Study 1: “that swimsuit become you”
Men and women to prove women are more prone to do it
Measured trait self-objectification (concern with appearance)
Evaluate consumer behaviour
Manipulate state self-objectification
Try on a swimsuit
Try on a sweater
Alone in a dressing room with a mirror
Measure body shame while wearing garment
Main effect of experimental condition (reported more same)
o Men: shy, bashful o Women: disgust, revulsion
Body shame predicted restrained eating in women
Attentional resources: requires thinking about self as an object and from a third
o Math performance: women in swimsuit performed worse than women
o Maybe men performed better in math test because they needed to
compensate for their lack of good body
#19 – Attachment
Attachment theory – John Bowlby
There was a sig relationship between separation with mom and delinquent behaviors
Separation anger, sadness reflects the attachment system designated to promote close physical
contact between infants and caregivers. (promotes safety of infants)
Mental model of self in relation to significant others (caregiver): include expectancies and
relationship with caregiver.
Attachment model develop in infancy via interactions with caregivers
Core features of attachment relationships:
1. Proximity maintenance: primary functions keep caregiver and infant in close proximity,
separation causes anxiety/cries which bring caregiver back
2. Secure base function: interaction with caregiver, infant learns that is reliable/safe so they
become confident to explore environment
3. Safe haven: caregiver protects infant when bad thing happen. Child learns emotional coping
The “strange situation”: what kind of stress the child goes when separated form caregiver and how do
they go around exploring
Secure: caregiver sensitive and responsive to infants signals. Infant seeks comfort upon reunion.
Results from consistent interaction with caregiver.
Anxious/ambivalent: caregiver inconsistent (not responsive vs. over bearing) child cannot
regular their response. Alternating response when caregiver come back (clingy and an upset).
Avoidant: caregiver rejecting. Child shows no distress upon separation and no reunion when
Secure: 62% of individuals, 23% avoidant, 15% ambivalence
Mental models of attachment:
Formed through repeated interactions with the caregiver and then become generalized.
Influence how we build our close relation interactions later in time, not just care giver.
They can change over time
Adult attachment: “Love survey” – Hazan & Shaver: paragraphs that describe styles of romantic relationships.
Distribution was similar to attachment styles in children
Anxious and avoidant are both insecure, both coping mechanisms and expectations are
different, which determines the style of attachment shown in adulthood
Correlates of insure attachment:
o Lower self-esteem
o Judge as more hostile
o Uncommitted sexual relationship
o Reduce tension with alcohol and other substances (negative coping
Attachment model, gender & relationship stability
354 dating couples – no anxious-anxious or avoidant-avoidant couples (makes theoretical sense
because it’s consistent with expectations)
If man avoidant, relationship rated more negative by both
If woman was anxious, relationship rated more negative by man but not woman
At time 2 (7-14mts), avoidant and secure men are more stable than anxious men.
At time 3 (30-36mts), anxious women more stable than other women.
Anxious women and avoidant men remained in negative relationships
Women are maintainers and breakers of relationships.
Women engage in behaviours to accommodate rough times in relationship because of
desire for closeness.
Anxious and secure women will try hard to hold onto avoidant partner
Safe haven (feature of attachment relationship)
Distress and coping response (Mikulincer 93): attachment style predicts coping mechanisms)
140 Israeli students
Dangerous vs. less dangerous areas of living
Assessed post-traumatic adjustment to missile attacks during Gulf War
Anxious (vs. secure)
Avoidance (vs. secure)
Lack of display of emotions
Effects of attachment only displayed among people living in dangerous areas.
Secures: support seeking (close other can be relied upon). Safe haven is psychological
resource Anxious: emotion focused coping
Anxiety and social support in lab (Simpson 92)
83 dating couples. Waiting in a room before anxiety provoking activity.
Secure women seek more supports than avoidant. Secure men provided more support than
Attachment behaviors are trigged by situations (as anxiety goes up secure women seek for more
support and avoidant women don’t). when anxiety was low, secure women seek less support
than avoidant women
Physiological response to stress
What happens if partner leaves the room (infants – physical closeness)
Does the mental model about partner confer psychological resource for the stressful situation?
Women perform stress inducing task and measure heart rate and blood pressure
Anxious and avoidant higher response than secure (because secure knew partner was
Why would avoidant have strong physiological response? (because in “strange situation” don’t
display in over way emotional behaviour)
Though not overt emotional responses from separation, they do exhibit physiological
Avoidance is used as a coping mechanism
o Suppression of unwanted thoughts.
Fear of rejection
o Though avoidance has a fear component in early childhood, it becomes
differentiated over time. (fearful vs. dismissive)
o Suppression becomes automatized
They might try to suppress they reaction to stressful situation
Bartholomew and Horowitz
Attachment model as view of self and view of other
Secure: positive other and self
Preoccupied: negative self, positive others
Dismissing: negative of other, positive of self
o Are capable of suppression thoughts of partner leaving them
Fearful: negative other and self
o Aren’t capable of suppression thoughts of partner leaving them
Attachment now measure in 2 factors: (continuum not category)
Anxiety about relationships
Fear of closeness and dependency
Stability and Change
Assess people at 2 time points Time 2, 70% same attachment model but 30% had different (these are not stable personality
Who was changing? Secure people didn’t change that much, 33% avoidant while 55% was
Maybe due to differences in interpersonal experiences
Relationship events and attachment models
Applying for marriage license (80% secure)
Secures who broke up: only 50% remained secure post breakup
Attachment models are sensitive to life events
#20 – Attachment and the relational self
Mental models are used as interpretative filters used to understand and build new relationships.
Female support seeking: no interaction of anxiety but an interaction between anxiety and personality
Social cognitive conceptualization of attachment:
Expectancies arise from memories from the past or interaction with different individuals.
Expectancies when it comes to attachment styles will people help you when in need?
List 10 impactful relationships (close relationships which were influential, not just
Rate in term of attachment measurement
Measure attachment style in general
Everyone had relationships characterized by different style. Even those who are
generally secure, have close relationship that are avoidant or anxious style.
Avoidant and anxious: have a mix of all 3 different styles
Most relationships are secure