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Social Psychology

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Lauren Manning

on 21 March 2013

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Transcript of Social Psychology

Sunnah Lindahl, Lauren Manning, Jimmy Nguyen Social Psychology Social Relations Psychological and Social-Cultural Factors in Aggression Social Relations Attraction It is how we relate to each other
Prejudice •Just World Phenomenon •TV, movies, and pornography can increase violence and encourage the rape myth, the idea that some women invite or enjoy rape •We become friends with some people, fall in love with some people, but don’t with others, why? •Bystander Intervention
•The Norms for Helping Social Thinking •Attitudes: feelings, often influenced by our beliefs, that predispose us to respond in a particular way to objects, people, and events Social psychology is the scientific study of how we think about, influence, and relate to one another
Our social behavior is a result of our social cognition
Attributing Behavior to Persons or Situations
Attitudes and Actions Fritz Heider's attribution theory claims that we explain someone's behavior by crediting either the situation or the person's disposition
Dispositional Attribution: crediting one’s personality for a behavior
Situational Attribution: explaining behavior as a reaction to the environment
The Fundamental Attribution Error can cause us to overestimate the influence of personality and underestimate the influence of situations. (ex. Mrs. Gilbert’s personality) Attitudes Affect Actions
Central route persuasion: attitude change path in which interested people focus on arguments and respond with favorable thoughts
Peripheral route persuasion: people are influenced by incidental cues, such as a speaker’s attractiveness (ex. Zac Efron selling Shake Weights)
Social pressures can weaken the attitude-behavior connections Attitudes Affect Actions

Foot-in-the-Door Phenomenon: Tendency for people who have agreed to a small request to comply with a larger one. (ex. Korean War, Civil Rights Act of 1964)
Door-in-the-Face Phenomenon: Tendency for people who have declined a large request to comply with a smaller one Role-Playing Affects Attitudes

When you act a role, you start to believe it and become it (ex. Zimbardo’s Stanford prison)
Cognitive Dissonance: The discomfort we feel when two of our thoughts are inconsistent
Changing your behavior can change how you think about others and feel about yourself People start to believe in the idea they support. Social Influence Can be seen in our conformity, compliance, and group behavior
Conformity and Obedience
Group Pressure and Conformity
Group Influence
Effects of Group Influence
Cultural Influence We are natural mimics
The Chameleon Effect: We unconsciously mimic each others’ expressions, postures, and voice tones to help us feel what they are feeling (empathy)
Empathetic, mimicking people are most liked
Mood Linkage: we feel happier around happy people than depressed ones •Conformity: adjusting one’s behavior or thinking to coincide with a group standard
Solomon Asch conformity experiments: intelligent college students gave the wrong answer to a simple question one-third of the time when confederates answered incorrectly. Conditions that Strengthen Conformity
•One feels incompetent or insecure
•The group has at least three people
•The group is unanimous
•One admires the group’s status and attractiveness
•One has made no prior commitment to any response
•Others in the group observe one’s behavior
•One’s culture strongly encourages respect for social standards Reasons for Conforming
Normative social influence: influence resulting from a person’s desire to gain approval or avoid disapproval
Informational social influence: influence resulting from one’s willingness to accept others’ opinions about reality •Stanley Milgram’s Experiments: with orders from a authority figure, 63% of those who participated administered lethal amounts of electric shock to “learners” Lessons From Conformity and Obedience Studies
Strong social influences can make people conform to falsehoods or capitulate to cruelty Social facilitation: stronger responses on simple or well-learned tasks in the presence of others
Having an audience for a difficult task hinders our performance.
What we do well, we do even better when people watch; what we find difficult may seem impossible when people watch. Social loafing: tendency for people in a group to exert less effort when pooling their efforts toward attaining a common goal than when individually accountable
people feel less accountable and worry less about what other people think •Deindividuation: the loss of self-awareness and self-restraint occurring in group situations that foster arousal and anonymity (ex. After Hurricane Katrina people stole from stores because they thought they would get lost in crowds) Group Polarization
•The enhancement of a group’s prevailing inclinations though discussions within the group(ex. Prejudiced people become more prejudiced) Groupthink•The mode of thinking that occurs when the desire for harmony in decision-making group overrides a realistic appraisal of alternatives (ex. Bay of Pigs Invasion/Cuban Missile Crisis) Groupthink•The mode of thinking that occurs when the desire for harmony in decision-making group overrides a realistic appraisal of alternatives (ex. Bay of Pigs Invasion/Cuban Missile Crisis) •Culture: the behaviors, ideas, attitudes, values, and traditions shared by a group of people and transmitted from one generation to the next. Variation Across Culture
Each cultural group has its own norms, understood rules for accepted and expected behavior.
Personal space: the buffer zone we like to maintain around our bodies
Cultures also vary in expressiveness and pace of life Variation Over Time
•Cultures change rapidly over time and change our lives.
•Today there is more divorce and depression than in 1960 The Power of Individuals
Social control and personal control interact
Minority influence: power of one or two individuals to influence the majority (ex. Troy Bolton's nonconformity led other students to break social norms and the "status quo") an unjustifiable and usually negative feeling towards a group
A mixture of beliefs (stereotype), emotions, and predispositions to actions (to discriminate)
Ex: 9/11 – prejudice against Muslims – Muslims are violent people People tend to prefer slightly feminized faces than masculine faces because women have traits that people like such as nurturance, sensitivity, and less aggressiveness •Social roots of prejudice Having things made people believe that they were better than people who didn’t have anything. •Slaves had nothing so people justified slavery of them •Dividing the world into “us” and “them” entails us to racism and war, but also provides benefits of communal solidarity. The Ingroup The Outgroup •These promote ingroup bias – a favoring of one's own group Ex: "our school is better than yours! GO PV!" •Prejudice can promote anger Scapegoat theory – finding someone to blame when things go wrong can provide a target for one’s anger. Ex – after 9/11 people stereotyped Muslims and lashed out at innocent Arab- Americans. •The Other race effect We can recognize faces of our own race better those of other races. We tend to believe that the world is just and that people get what they deserve and deserve what they get. •Hindsight Bias tendency for people to blame the victim of mistreatment because, in hindsight, they should have known better •Ex. Blaming a woman who was raped of displaying behavior that “invited rape” Aggression •Any physical or verbal behavior intended to hurt or destroy. •Biological factors and psychological factors can influence our threshold of aggressive behavior Biology of aggression •Genetics •Y chromosome is a genetic marker for aggressiveness •Neural influences •Not one spot in the brain controls aggression. Aggression a complex behavior that occurs in particular contexts some animals can be bred for aggressiveness •Biochemical influences high testosterone levels can lead to more aggressive behavior •Frustration–Aggression Principle Frustration (the blocking of an attempt to achieve some goal) creates anger •Aversive events lead to a fight-or-flight reaction •Different cultures model, reinforce, and evoke different tendencies toward violence. ex. Scots-Irish settled towns are more violent than New England towns settled by Puritans and Quakers •Social scripts- the “screenplays” of how to act that we’re shown by the media •Violent video games desensitize us to violence •Catharsis hypothesis: the idea that a person can use a video game as a harmless outlet to aggression. NOT supported •Proximity •Physical Attractiveness •Similarity •To become close people must share proximity – geographic nearness.

It is the first factor to play in attraction. •We like people with whom we’re familiar and who are like us. Conversely, we distrust people unfamiliar and unlike us. •The mere exposure effect says
that repeated exposure to
novel stimuli increases how
much we like it.
•Experiments show the more we
see a person, the more attractive
we find them. •After proximity, the next
biggest factor that draws attraction
is physical appearance.
•Attractiveness also influences people’s perceptions. The good-looking are seen as healthy, happy, sensitive, successful, etc. Attractive and well-dressed people get better jobs and earn more as well. •Different cultures, and
different time periods,
have different
definitions of beauty.
People go to extremes
to alter their appearances
in trying to meet the
perceived definition of
beauty. •Characteristics like honesty, humor, manners, etc. are great. Once a person gets to know you with these characteristics, they tend to start seeing you as more
physically attractive.
•A face that is a computer composite of many faces is seen as more attractive than the faces that make it up. This is perhaps
because the average face is symmetrical, which we like. •Similarity, or getting to know a person, is the next factor that plays into attraction.•The research clearly shows that opposites do not attract. We dislike those unlike us, we like people like us. •Friends and couples usually have these things in common: age, religion, race, education, intelligence, smoking behavior, economic level. •The “reward theory of attraction” says we’ll like people whose behavior is rewarding to us in some way.
1. If we live in someone’s proximity, we can enjoy their company frequently.
2. If they’re physically attractive, it’s nice to be with them and may “up” our status.
3.If they share our thoughts and feelings, they validate our thoughts and feelings. Romantic Love •Romantic love can be broken down into short-term “passionate love” and long-term “companionate love.”
•Passionate Love
•Companionate Love •Passionate love is usually brought on by arousal. Arousal can come in many forms, such as fright, aerobic exercise, eroticism, funny or crude talk.
•Whatever the cause of arousal, a study showed men who were aroused viewed a woman as being more attractive than men who were not aroused. •Companionate love lasts the test of time—it’s steady, deep affection. Whereas passionate love yields children, companionate love yields families. •Having a relationship based on equity is important. This is where both the man and woman help out one another. •Also, self-disclosure is important. This is revealing our innermost desires and dreams to our spouse. To reach this, two people must spend time with one another and gradually earn one another’s trust. Research shows that sharing ourselves with others binds us together. Conflict and Peacemaking •Social Traps
•Enemy Perceptions
•Conciliation •Altruism is when we put others ahead of ourselves.

•The 1964 rape and murder of Kitty Genovese awakened social psychologists to the power of social behavior. Though 38 neighbors heard her cry, they were hesitant to call the police. This is an example of “non-altruism” because the neighbors did not want to inconvenience themselves by getting involved. •The Kitty Genovese case exemplifies the bystander effect. It says that, if there are several people present during an emergency, we’re less likely to take action.

•If only one person was there, he or she usually took action.

•Having many people around during an emergency resulted in a “diffusion of responsibility.” This is because our level of responsibility is “watered down.” •Other patterns of altruism show the best odds of someone helping take place when….

The person appears to need and deserve help.

The person is in some way similar to us.

We have just observed someone else being helpful.

We are not in a hurry.

We are in a small town or rural area.

We are feeling guilty.

We are focused on others and not preoccupied.

We are in a good mood. •One theory simply says that we help others if we weigh the costs and benefits and the benefits outweigh the costs. This is called either the social exchange theory, or “cost-benefit analysis” or “utilitarianism.”
•There are intrinsic rewards. Helping people makes us feel good. Brain scans support this. •The reciprocity norm says we should give help (not harm) to those who’ve helped us.

•The social-responsibility norm says we should help those who are in need. •Conflict is a perceived incompatibility of actions, goals, or ideas. It’s bickering or fighting. •Social traps occur when our self-interest leads us into lose-lose situations. •Jean Jacques Rousseau came up with the “game theory” known as the Prisoners’ Dilemma.
Imagine two criminals arrested then held in separate rooms. Under interrogation, each is given a choice, either (A) don’t confess or (B) confess.oIf person 1 confesses, he gets off easy, especially if person 2 does not confess.If person 2 confesses, he gets off easy, especially if person 1 does not confess.What usually happens is that both people will confess (they both act in their own best interest).
The best option is that neither confesses, but out of fear of “being slammed” by their partner, they do what’s best for themselves and both confess.• An example of a social trap might be a person who thinks, “If I don’t recycle, that’s only one person not doing it.” If a million others think that way, it makes a big difference. •The mirror-image perception concept says we tend to view others as evil and untrustworthy and they see us the same way. •Our negative behavior toward the other group can in turn be reflected back toward us. This creates a self-fulfilling prophecy.

•An example of this occurred when Saddam Hussein’s military overran tiny and helpless Kuwait in 1990. After America showed altruism by coming to Kuwait’s aid and pushing Saddam out, Hussein reciprocated a bitter hatred toward America. •Contact with people whom we prior had held prejudice or dislike helps us get along. •Cooperation can lead to achieving superordinate goals—shared goals that cancel out differences and which can only be achieved through cooperation.

•For example, after 9/11, George W. Bush’s approval rating shot up to 91%, the highest ever. The shared goal of America was to achieve justice for the wrong brought on by terrorists. •Communication is critical.

•During times of crisis, communication is most-needed, but least likely to take place. •Conciliation is overcoming disagreements and giving in to, or appeasing, another person.

•For example, after Saddam Hussein took over tiny Kuwait, President George H. W. Bush said America would “Kick Saddam’s ass.” Saddam said Americans will “swim in their own blood.” No conciliation here. •Charles Osgood offered a path of conciliation called “GRIT” (Graduated and Reciprocated Initiatives in Tension-Reduction). This is when two groups negotiate instead of fight. If the enemy responds with aggression, appropriate action is taken.

•In laboratories, GRIT seems promising. In real-life GRIT has not done well. Politicians who naively follow the GRIT theory (by relying solely on diplomacy and sanctions) are often played as fools by bullies.Despite one’s own desire to seek out the good in humanity, evil does exist and is very real. And, the evil-doer will use his counterpart’s naïve desire-for-good for his own wicked advantage. http://
www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzQSEoNdGvk Altruism
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