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IR4546 Week 2

Psychological Theories

Ryan Beasley

on 26 September 2018

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Transcript of IR4546 Week 2

Psychological Theories
Discussion Time
All Individuals
Each Individual
Limited Information Processors
Specific Stereotypes
Heuristics & Biases
Motivated Reasoners
Consistency Seekers
'Americans are ignorant imperialists'
'Brits are Snooty Football nuts'

Tendency to avoid, select, organize, or distort incoming information so that it matches beliefs
characteristics, personality, intentions
People tend to evaluate:
Their own in-group and its members favourably
Out-groups and their members disfavourably
Inter-group tensions
Favor In-Group Distributions
Turned K to find a 3
Turned 3 to find a K
But: Could be a J on back of 3, which would tell us nothing
Solution: Turn the 4 (to disconfirm hypothesis)
Seek Confirming Information
Satisfied when Confirmation Found
Stop Looking
Cognitive & Social
Acquisition, Processing, and Storing of Information
Social Influence, Perception, and Interaction
Schema Theory
Heuristics & Biases
Cognitive Consistency Theories
Conformity; Obedience
Stereotypes, Prejudice, Discrimination
Cognition-Affect-Emotion Debates
Attribution Theory
Social Identity; Intergroup
Behaviour to Cognition in Psychology
Skinner (Behaviourism; Dominant in 1930s)
Reinforcement (positive, negative, punishment)
Cognition Irrelevant!
Pavlov (Learning)
Classical Conditioning
Reminds me of the 'black box' of the state in Realism
Cognitive Revolution!
S-->O-->R (1940s & 50s)
Remind you of Anything in IR?
Then Looking inside the State (domestic politics, DM, etc.)
Intergroup Relations
Realistic Conflict Theory (Sherif; Robbers Cave)
Attitudes and Behaviours Driven by Social Grouping
Conflict is realistic; functional
Cooperation due to superordinate goals
Categorization Theory
More cognitive/schema
Favour ingroup due to info processing
Social Identity Theory (Tajfel & Turner)
Identity & Esteem Connected to Group Membership
Members of Groups Feel and Behave Differently
Emotion & Affect
Mercer 'Emotional Beliefs'
Big 5
Personality Theories
Trait Theories
Learned Personality Theories
Genetic Determinants
Enduring Issues
Consistent Across Situations?
Situation-Personality Interaction
Now down to consensus on Big 5: extraversion, neuroticism, openness to experience, agreeableness, conscientiousness
Deep-Seated Drives (Compexes; Psych-Sexual)
Seen as Less 'Scientific'
social learning; learned helplessness
locus of control
Cognitive Structures That Organize Related Objects, Situations, Events (Representations)
Functional -- simplify complex world; but errors
Free Associate!
But Carrots!
Scripts -- Schemas of Sequences of Events
Restaurant Script
Schemas Affect How We:
Organize Information
Retrieve Information
Evaluate Information
Humans as 'Cognitive Misers'
We Don't Like to Process Information: It's Work!
We Have Limited Capacities (Memory)
We Have Limited Information Processing Abilities
We Have Limited Time
Herbert Simon's Bounded Rationality and Satisficing
'Cold Cognition'
Cognitive Consistency
Two Major (but similar) Theories (1950s)
Balance Theory (Fritz Heider)
Cognitive Dissonance Theory (Leon Festinger)
Both Propose a Basic 'Motivation' Regarding Information
We Feel 'Uncomfortable' When Information is 'Inconsistent'
I have recently published using both
Balance Theory
Cognitive Dissonance
Seen as a 'Drive' (like for food or sex)
Contradictory Information --> Discomfort
Reduce Dissonance By:
Denial; Bolster; etc.
Can Be Information Only
Behaviour Seems Central (Smoking; Cancer)
Essentially Must Change Something
Freely Chose Behaviour
Choice Among Alternatives (Choosing)
Spreading of Alternatives
Both Consistency Theories Imply:
We Might Call This a 'Biasing Effect'
There are many of these
Not All Fit within 'Consistency Theories' (i.e. Motivated)
*Rosati, Jerel A. (2000) “The Power of Human Cognition in the Study of World Politics,” International Studies Review, 2:45-75.

*Goldgeier, J. M. (1997). Psychology and security. Security Studies, 6(4), 137.

*Jervis, R. (2006), Understanding Beliefs. Political Psychology, 27: 641–663.

*Jervis, R. (2012). PSYCHOLOGY AND SECURITY: ENDURING QUESTIONS, DIFFERENT ANSWERS. Yale Journal Of International Affairs, 7(2), 9.

*Mercer, J. (2010). Emotional Beliefs. International Organization, (1), 1.
Next Week:
Image Theory
Conformity & Obedience
Stereotypes, Prejudice, Discrimination
Social & Personality
Asch -- Conformity (video)
Milgram -- Obedience (video)
Stereotype -- Fixed Overgeneralized Belief About a Particular Group
Can be Positive or Negative
Related to Limited Information Processing
All People in All Societies have Stereotypes
The Groups and Content Differs
Prejudice - Negative Feelings & Attitudes about a Group
Hold and Endorses Negative Stereotypes
Negative Attitude Toward a Group
Attitude -- Like or Dislike at some level of Strength
Discrimination - Negative Behaviour or Actions Toward a Group
Can Be Institutionalized, Not Just People to People
Attribution Theory
People as Naive ('intuitive') Scientists
Try to Attribute Causes to the World
Dispositional Causes
Situational Causes
What a Person/Actor is Like
Context as Causal Agent
Attribution Errors (a.k.a. Correspondence Bias)
Attribute Others' Bad Behaviour to Disposition
Attribute Own Bad Behaviour to Situations
Context Cause Behavior
Opposite for Good Behaviour!
Literature Review Lecture/Session
How to Dissect & Interrogate the Readings
1) What is the Central Thesis?
3) What is the Evidence?
2) What are the Key Arguments Supporting the Thesis?
4) What are the Findings? Do They Fully Support the Thesis?
5) Critique! Flaws? Errors?
6) How Does it Fit with/Oppose Other Readings?
(Somebody find a better acronym please!)
Hypothesis: On the Back of Every 'K' there is a '3'
Confirmation Bias
In-Group/Out-Group Bias
Simon’s influence is evidenced by his many honors, including the Turing Award, the 1978 Nobel Prize in Economics, the National Medal of Science and the American Psychological Association’s Award for Outstanding Lifetime Contributions to Psychology. (http://compton.mit.edu/speakers/herbert-simon/)
Peg Turning: Psychology vs Economics
Wednesday, 10 October
4pm-6pm, Seminar Room 1
Wednesday Group: 31 October, 9am-10:30am, Seminar 4
Thursday Group: 1 November, 9:30am-11am, Arts Lecture Theatre
11am Lecture will be in Arts Lecture Theatre
Jervis Reading?
Mercer Reading?
Full transcript