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Chapter 6

Chapter 6 PSYC12

12 Pages

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Michael Inzlicht

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Chapter 9 Reducing PrejudiceThe Contact HypothesisPeople that tend to make assumptions about groups which they have little contact or about where they have very little knowledge oWith having little contact they feel little motivation to be accurate in their assumptions expectations and generalizationsThus by getting to know each other we eliminate the fear of the unknown by getting to know each other Contact hypothesis proposes that increasing exposure to members of various groups can increase positive evaluations of outgroup and decrease prejudice and Sting Allports Contact HypothesisContact hypothesis suggest that merely putting two groups together ie mere contact is sufficient as people would naturally work it out and get to know one another when placed in contact with other members of the outgroupoBUT research shows that mere contact is ineffective in changing racial attitudes It became apparent that in order to understand why contact hypothesis only occasionally seemed to work well in reducing intergroup prejudice was that it was necessary to ask NOT does intergroup contact reduce prejudice BUT rather in what types of contact situations with kinds of representatives of disliked group will interaction and attitude change of specified types occur and how will this vary for subjects of differing characteristics oReason is that when looking at outgroup members ST and negative affect are elicted even prior to the interactionoST filters the perception of interaction in ways that confirm the ST about the outgroup and by the time the interactants part they offish each other has confirmed the others suspicion casual contact has left matters worse than beforeResearch found in many situations that roughly 50 of interactants felt more positive toward outgroup and only 50 of the time people felt negative toward the outgroupoOne reason that such externally imposed attempts to foster more tolerant outgroup attitudes often tend to meet with failure is that majority group reacts to such real or imagined pressure by feeling angry threatened and perhaps as a result of reactance they then respond to the outgroup with even more negative attitudes Gordon Allport recognized that a whole host of factors affect intergroup contact context and influence if people emerge from the situation with more positivenegative attitudes toward the outgroupoHe stated that its the effect of contact will depend on the association that occurs and upon the kinds of people that are involved ooooThus its important to knowCharacteristics of situation eg situation of members are they equal Whos superiorRoles cooperative vs competitive of contactSocial atmosphere is prejudice prevalientThe personality of interactants is person highlow in prejudice toward the outgroupSituations that contact takes place Allport suggested 4 things that must be met for positive intergroup contactoEqual status membersoCommon goalsoIntergroup cooperationoSupport of legitimate authority eg government etcAmir offers two more variablesoFavourable climate for intergroup contactoContact must be intimate rather than casualPettigrew adds 1 more to the original 4oContact situation must have friendship potentialTest of Contact hypothesis
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