This research was supported in part by a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship and Grant AA12770 provided by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism of the National Institutes of Health. I wish to thank Cindy Holland for her help in conducting Experiment 1, and Meghan von Linden for her help in conducting Experiment 2.
Prejudice as Self-Control Failure1
Article first published online: 18 JAN 2008
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 38, Issue 2, pages 314–333, February 2008
How to Cite
Muraven, M. (2008), Prejudice as Self-Control Failure. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 38: 314–333. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.2007.00307.x
- Issue published online: 18 JAN 2008
- Article first published online: 18 JAN 2008
Research has suggested that whereas stereotypical attitudes may be automatically activated, the response to these stereotypes can be controlled. Anything that interferes with self-control may result in more biased behavior. The ego strength model hypothesizes that after exerting self-control, subsequent self-control performance will suffer. Hence, depletion of ego strength may lead to increased prejudice. In 2 studies, depletion was found only to affect individuals who normally try to control their prejudicial responses. Participants who do not normally try to control their use of stereotypes were equally prejudiced, regardless of their level of ego strength. The results have implications for prejudice and stereotyping, as well as models of self-control.