Social Psychology. Part 1: *Attributing Behavior to Persons or to Situations *1. Attitudes and Actions *2. Conformity and Obedience *3. Group Influence *4. Cultural Influence *5. The Power of Individuals. True/False.
*Attributing Behavior to Persons or to Situations
*1. Attitudes and Actions
*2. Conformity and Obedience
*3. Group Influence
*4. Cultural Influence
*5. The Power of Individuals
Attribution Theory:Fritz Heider (1958) suggested that we have a tendency to give causal explanations for someone’s behavior, often by crediting either the situation or the person’s disposition.
Was my friend a jerk because she had a bad day or is just a bad person?
A teacher may wonder whether a child’s hostility reflects an aggressive personality (dispositional attribution) or is a reaction to stress or abuse (a situational attribution).
Dispositions are enduring personality traits. So, if Joe is a quiet, shy, and introverted child, he is likely to be like that in a number of situations.
The tendency to overestimate the impact of personal disposition and underestimate the impact of the situations in analyzing the behaviors of others leads to the fundamental attribution error.
Example: Someone trips you and you think they did it on purpose because they are mean.
Thecentral route to persuasion involves being persuaded by the arguments or the content of the message.
For example, after hearing a political debate you may decide to vote for a candidate because you found the candidates views and arguments very convincing.
The peripheral route to persuasion involves being persuaded in a manner that is not based on the arguments or the message content.
For example, after reading a political debate you may decide to vote for a candidate because you like the sound of the person's voice, or the person went to the same university as you did. The peripheral route can involve using superficial cues such as the attractiveness of the speaker.
Strong social pressure can weaken the attitude –behavior connection, such as when Democratic leaders supported Bush’s attack on Iraq under public pressure. However, they had their private reservations.
Not only do people stand for what they believe in (attitude), they start believing in what they stand for.
Cooperative actions can lead to mutual liking (beliefs).
Discussion: The Low-Ball Effect
Door-in-the-face phenomenon large request is made knowing it will probably be refused so that the person will agree to a much smaller request
Norms of reciprocity
“hey if I scratch your back I expect you to scratch mine”
Dark Knight - Cognitive Dissonance
What do experiments on conformity and compliance reveal about the power of social influence? ….Behavior is contagious. We are natural mimics..called the chameleon effect.
Normative social influence. Avoid rejection or gain social approval.
Informational Social Influence: When we accept others opinions about reality.
Social psychologist, Stanley Milgram: Situation powerfully influence people. Obedience highest when: person giving the orders were perceived to be a legitimate authority figure, when authority figure was supported by prestigious institution, when victim was at a distance, no role models for defiance
To strengthen conformity:
For example, after a group discussion, people already supportive of a war become more supportive, people with an initial tendency towards racism become more racist and a group with a slight preference for one job candidate will come out with a much stronger preference.
Ingroup: People with whom one shares a common identity. Outgroup:Those perceived as different from one’s ingroup. Ingroup Bias: The tendency to favor one’s own group.
Mike Hewitt/ Getty Images
Scotland’s famed “Tartan Army” fans.
Prejudice provides an outlet for anger [emotion] by providing someone to blame. The Germans before WW2 would blame the Jews for their poor economy. According to the scapegoat theory of prejudice, finding someone to blame when things go wrong can provide a target for one’s anger.
To boost our own sense of status, it helps to have others to denigrate.
In vivid casessuch as the 9/11 attacks, terrorists can feed stereotypes or prejudices (terrorism). Most terrorists are non-Muslims.
Aggressioncan be any physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt or destroy.
It may be done reactively out of hostility or proactively as a calculated means to an end.
Research shows that aggressive behavior emerges from the interaction of biology and experience.
Biochemical Influences: Animals with diminished amounts of testosterone (castration) become docile, and if injected with testosterone aggression increases. Prenatal exposure to testosterone also increases aggression in female hyenas.
Four psychological factors that influence aggressive behavior are:
Genetic Influences:Animals have been bred for aggressiveness for sport and at times for research.
Neural Influences: Some centers in the brain, especially the limbic system (amygdala) and the frontal lobe, are intimately involved with aggression.
Studies in which animals and humans experience unpleasant events reveal that those made miserable often make others miserable.
Ron Artest (Pacers) attack on Detroit Pistons fans.
Even environmental temperature can lead to aggressive acts. Murders and rapes increased with the temperature in Houston.
When aggression leads to desired outcomes, one learns to be aggressive. This is shown in both animals and humans.
Cultures that favor violence breed violence. Scotch-Irish settlers in the South had more violent tendencies than their Puritan, Quaker, & Dutch counterparts in the Northeast of the US.
The media portrays social scripts and generates mental tapes in the minds of the viewers. When confronted with new situations individuals may rely on such social scripts. If social scripts are violent in nature, people may act them out.
The general consensus on violent video games is that, to some extent, they breed violence. Adolescents view the world as hostile when they get into arguments and receive bad grades after playing such games.
5 Factors of Attraction
Mere exposure effect:
Obesity is so revered among Mauritania's white Moor Arab population that the young girls are sometimes force-fed to obtain a weight the government has described as "life-threatening".