The influence of target group status on the perception of the offensiveness of group-based slurs

Pj Henry, Sarah E. Butler, Mark J. Brandt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Two studies investigate the effects of target group status on perceptions of the offensiveness of group-based slurs. Using real-world groups as targets, Study 1 showed that the perception that a group is of lower status in society is associated with the perceived offensiveness of insults targeting that group. Experimental methods in Study 2 showed that people perceive slurs against a low status group as especially offensive, a pattern that was mediated by the expectation that low-status targets would be emotionally reactive to the insult. The results suggest that cultural taboos emerge concerning insults against low-status groups that may be due in part to how those target groups are expected to respond emotionally to those insults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-192
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
Volume53
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Fingerprint

Taboo
target group
status group
Group

Keywords

  • Group-based insults
  • Group-based status
  • Intergroup relations
  • Prejudice
  • Taboos

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this

The influence of target group status on the perception of the offensiveness of group-based slurs. / Henry, Pj; Butler, Sarah E.; Brandt, Mark J.

In: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 53, 01.01.2014, p. 185-192.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{7750358089eb400ea5e8871b8ad49254,
title = "The influence of target group status on the perception of the offensiveness of group-based slurs",
abstract = "Two studies investigate the effects of target group status on perceptions of the offensiveness of group-based slurs. Using real-world groups as targets, Study 1 showed that the perception that a group is of lower status in society is associated with the perceived offensiveness of insults targeting that group. Experimental methods in Study 2 showed that people perceive slurs against a low status group as especially offensive, a pattern that was mediated by the expectation that low-status targets would be emotionally reactive to the insult. The results suggest that cultural taboos emerge concerning insults against low-status groups that may be due in part to how those target groups are expected to respond emotionally to those insults.",
keywords = "Group-based insults, Group-based status, Intergroup relations, Prejudice, Taboos",
author = "Pj Henry and Butler, {Sarah E.} and Brandt, {Mark J.}",
year = "2014",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.jesp.2014.03.012",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "53",
pages = "185--192",
journal = "Journal of Experimental Social Psychology",
issn = "0022-1031",
publisher = "Academic Press Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The influence of target group status on the perception of the offensiveness of group-based slurs

AU - Henry, Pj

AU - Butler, Sarah E.

AU - Brandt, Mark J.

PY - 2014/1/1

Y1 - 2014/1/1

N2 - Two studies investigate the effects of target group status on perceptions of the offensiveness of group-based slurs. Using real-world groups as targets, Study 1 showed that the perception that a group is of lower status in society is associated with the perceived offensiveness of insults targeting that group. Experimental methods in Study 2 showed that people perceive slurs against a low status group as especially offensive, a pattern that was mediated by the expectation that low-status targets would be emotionally reactive to the insult. The results suggest that cultural taboos emerge concerning insults against low-status groups that may be due in part to how those target groups are expected to respond emotionally to those insults.

AB - Two studies investigate the effects of target group status on perceptions of the offensiveness of group-based slurs. Using real-world groups as targets, Study 1 showed that the perception that a group is of lower status in society is associated with the perceived offensiveness of insults targeting that group. Experimental methods in Study 2 showed that people perceive slurs against a low status group as especially offensive, a pattern that was mediated by the expectation that low-status targets would be emotionally reactive to the insult. The results suggest that cultural taboos emerge concerning insults against low-status groups that may be due in part to how those target groups are expected to respond emotionally to those insults.

KW - Group-based insults

KW - Group-based status

KW - Intergroup relations

KW - Prejudice

KW - Taboos

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84898933375&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84898933375&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.jesp.2014.03.012

DO - 10.1016/j.jesp.2014.03.012

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:84898933375

VL - 53

SP - 185

EP - 192

JO - Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

JF - Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

SN - 0022-1031

ER -