What Do You Mean by "European"? Evidence of Spontaneous Ingroup Projection

ISCTE-Lisbon University Institute, Lisbon, Portugal.
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (Impact Factor: 2.52). 07/2010; 36(7):960-74. DOI: 10.1177/0146167210367488
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The ingroup projection model posits that group members project ingroup features onto a superordinate category. The present research aimed at isolating the cognitive underpinnings of this process. If ingroup projection is a spontaneous cognitive process, a superordinate category prime should facilitate the processing of the ingroup prototype rather than the outgroup prototype. Three studies support this hypothesis by comparing subliminal semantic priming in two different populations, an intra- versus intergroup situation, and with an ingroup prototype manipulated by changing the intergroup context. Results indicated that the superordinate category prime facilitated the processing of ingroup rather than outgroup traits (Experiment 1) and that these traits depended on the particular content of the ingroup prototype made salient by different contexts (Experiments 2 and 3). The findings indicate that the cognitive representation of the superordinate category is based on ingroup traits and that this representation is context dependent.

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Available from: Melanie C. Steffens, Aug 13, 2015
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    • "This methodological paradigm thus provided further evidence for ingroup projection and, in this case, also showed more clearly the direction of the process from the ingroup onto the superordinate category. Bianchi et al. (2007, Study 2) used a similar approach in combination with their implicit measurement of ingroup projection. In a lexical decision task, a subliminal prime ''European'' (compared to a neutral prime ''XXXXXXX'') facilitated German participants' recognition of counter-British attributes when the British were a salient outgroup, and counter-Italian attributes when Italians were the salient outgroup. "
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