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Words will never hurt me:the paradoxical effects of intergroup proselytizing on outgroup helping


Reference:

Smith, L. and Philpot, C., 2011. Words will never hurt me:the paradoxical effects of intergroup proselytizing on outgroup helping. In: British Psychological Society Social Section Annual Conference, 2011-09-06 - 2011-09-08.

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Abstract

Objectives: Research suggests that voicing group opinions increases intergroup hostility. However, some groups use proselytizing as a technique to develop positive intergroup relationships. We conducted a 2-phase study to investigate the relationship between religious beliefs (Christian vs. non-religious), intergroup proselytizing, and norms for intergroup attitudes on helping an outgroup (Muslim) target. Design: At Phase 1, participants completed a survey that measured beliefs and proselytizing. One week later, participants completed Phase 2. We manipulated the norm (Christian love vs. religious tolerance vs. control) using a subconscious priming technique. This 2-phase design enabled us to test the relationships between beliefs and proselytizing (both measured at Phase 1), and the effect of priming norms for intergroup attitudes on outgroup helping. Methods:Participants (N=447) were recruited from Australia, Malaysia and the US. The sample included both Christian (n=356) and non-religious (atheists, agnostics, humanists; n=91) participants. Results were analysed with hierarchical regression. Results: Non-religious and Christian participants reported proselytizing equally and were equally likely to offer help to a Muslim target. Proselytizing had a positive relationship with intergroup helping. However, we found a 2-way interaction between the norm prime and beliefs : Christian participants were more likely to offer help to a Muslim target when they were primed with the Christian love norm, and non-religious participants were more likely to offer help when they were primed with a religious tolerance norm. Conclusions: Taken together, these findings suggest that intergroup proselytizing could be used more effectively than norm interventions as a tool for intergroup reconciliation.

Details

Item Type Conference or Workshop Items (UNSPECIFIED)
CreatorsSmith, L.and Philpot, C.
DepartmentsFaculty of Humanities & Social Sciences > Psychology
StatusPublished
ID Code45655

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