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In the Journals

Hate: Dropping the H-Bomb

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“Hate” – the term is becoming an all too familiar. “Hate group” members and sympathizers use “hate speech” and commit “hate crimes.” Recent events on the worldwide sociopolitical landscape have revealed the often intensely visceral reactions people have when they see actions that they consider to be hate. The three little words – “I HATE you” – can damage interpersonal, intergroup, and international relationships in ways that “I am angry at you” or “I dislike you” cannot begin to match.

Predicting Resistance to Taking on The Perspective of Minority Group Members

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Some individuals believe that people in disadvantaged positions are personally to blame for their situation. For example, poverty can be viewed as resulting from poor people’s bad decision making. This belief can lead these individuals to feel happy when disadvantaged groups face harsh treatment. For example, they may be happy when asylum seekers are put in detention centres, believing that the asylum seekers were wrong to enter the country illegally and so they must suffer the consequences.

Ingroup and Outgroup Favoritism in Implicit Attitudes

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Individuals hold two kinds of attitudes: explicit versus implicit. Explicit attitudes are relatively more controllable, intentional, and consciously endorsed, and can be measured by simply asking whether someone prefers White to Black people. Implicit attitudes are more unconscious and automatic, and thus require a subtler form of measurement.

The Development of Own-Race Advantage in Infants and Children Reflects a Natural Outcome of Perceptual Learning

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People are remarkable at processing human faces. In a split second, one can recognize a person’s gender, race, or emotions. However, this expertise only works when the faces belong to one’s own racial group. Known as the own-race advantage (ORA), this psycholgical limitation affects people of all colors. People are notoriously bad at distinguishing between members of unfamiliar racial groups. Scientists have reliably demonstrated the ORA effect across different ethnic groups and with various experimental paradigms.

The Consent of the Governed May Depend on Who’s Doing the Governing

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Historically, elected office in the United States has been a white man’s game. Racial and gender diversity among winners of House, Senate, and gubernatorial elections have increased steadily since the late 1980s, but as a nation we are far from parity. The current Congress is the most diverse in U.S. history, and the incoming 116th Congress will likely be even more so.

The Power of a Hug Can Help You Cope with Conflict

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Friends, children, romantic partners, family members – many of us exchange hugs with others on a regular basis. New research from the United States, published today in PLOS, now shows hugs can help us to cope with conflict in our daily life.

Hugs are considered a form of affectionate touch. Hugs occur between social partners of all types, and sometimes even strangers.

Family Environment in Early Childhood Has Enduring Effect on Self-Esteem

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Most of us assume that the way how young children are raised shapes their evolving sense of self-esteem. Consider two examples. Rachel’s parents are warm and responsive individuals, show interest in Rachel’s feelings and opinions, and promote her cognitive development. In contrast, Sophie’s parents have persistent marital conflicts, often lack the emotional resources to pay attention to Sophie’s needs, and frequently yell at her when she does something wrong. It seems likely that Rachel develops higher self-esteem than Sophie.

The SAGE Model of Social Psychological Research

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Following the 2008 global economic crash, the Irish accepted harsh austerity as the national economy collapsed, only to protest in 2014 & 2015 during a stark economic recovery. This paradox raises many pertinent questions for social and cultural psychologists: why do some people not protest when others riot in the streets; how are culturally-salient narratives taken up by individuals in times of social change; under what conditions do people tolerate economic inequality and when does this tolerance give way?

Growth Mindset Interventions Yield Impressive Results

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A growth mindset is the belief that intellectual abilities are not fixed, but can be developed. Do students who are taught a growth mindset earn higher grades and test scores?