Portions of this article were presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Society, Washington, DC, July 1994. Preparation of this article was facilitated by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada grant to Victoria Esses. We thank Gregory Maio, James Olson, and an anonymous reviewer for their comments on previous versions of this article, and Robert Gardner for his advice about statistical analyses.
Ambivalence and Response Amplification Toward Native Peoples1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 27, Issue 12, pages 1063–1084, June 1997
How to Cite
Bell, D. w. and Esses, V. M. (1997), Ambivalence and Response Amplification Toward Native Peoples. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 27: 1063–1084. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1997.tb00287.x
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
This study determined whether ambivalence toward Native peoples would result in amplified, or polarized, responses to members of the group, as assessed in terms of both general attitudes and social policy endorsements. In addition, it examined whether priming would mediate these effects, based on the notion that ambivalent attitudes contain both positive and negative dimensions that may be activated at different times. Induction of different mood states was used as an indirect priming manipulation. One hundred thirty-eight Canadian participants completed measures of ambivalence toward Native peoples and Canadians. One week later, these participants underwent a positive, neutral, or negative mood induction procedure. They then indicated their attitudes toward Native peoples and Canadians, and responded to social policy questions involving both groups. Participants who were highly ambivalent or not ambivalent toward Native peoples were retained for analysis; participants generally displayed low ambivalence toward Canadians. It was predicted and the results confirmed that only participants who were ambivalent toward Native peoples would display a relative response amplification effect: a greater difference between positive and negative mood states in their responses to Native peoples than in their responses to Canadians.