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The irony of harmony: intergroup contact can produce false expectations for equality.
Psychol Sci. 2009 Jan; 20(1):114-21.PS

Abstract

Positive intergroup contact has been a guiding framework for research on reducing intergroup tension and for interventions aimed at that goal. We propose that beyond improving attitudes toward the out-group, positive contact affects disadvantaged-group members' perceptions of intergroup inequality in ways that can undermine their support for social change toward equality. In Study 1, participants were assigned to either high- or low-power experimental groups and then brought together to discuss either commonalities between the groups or intergroup differences. Commonality-focused contact, relative to difference-focused contact, produced heightened expectations for fair (i.e., egalitarian) out-group behavior among members of disadvantaged groups. These expectations, however, proved unrealistic when compared against the actions of members of the advantaged groups. Participants in Study 2 were Israeli Arabs (a disadvantaged minority) who reported the amount of positive contact they experienced with Jews. More positive intergroup contact was associated with increased perceptions of Jews as fair, which in turn predicted decreased support for social change. Implications for social change are considered.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Psychology, Yale University, Box 208205, New Haven, CT 06520-8205, USA. tamar.saguy@yale.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Randomized Controlled Trial
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

Language

eng

PubMed ID

19152543

Citation

Saguy, Tamar, et al. "The Irony of Harmony: Intergroup Contact Can Produce False Expectations for Equality." Psychological Science, vol. 20, no. 1, 2009, pp. 114-21.
Saguy T, Tausch N, Dovidio JF, et al. The irony of harmony: intergroup contact can produce false expectations for equality. Psychol Sci. 2009;20(1):114-21.
Saguy, T., Tausch, N., Dovidio, J. F., & Pratto, F. (2009). The irony of harmony: intergroup contact can produce false expectations for equality. Psychological Science, 20(1), 114-21. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9280.2008.02261.x
Saguy T, et al. The Irony of Harmony: Intergroup Contact Can Produce False Expectations for Equality. Psychol Sci. 2009;20(1):114-21. PubMed PMID: 19152543.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - The irony of harmony: intergroup contact can produce false expectations for equality. AU - Saguy,Tamar, AU - Tausch,Nicole, AU - Dovidio,John F, AU - Pratto,Felicia, PY - 2009/1/21/entrez PY - 2009/1/21/pubmed PY - 2009/5/12/medline SP - 114 EP - 21 JF - Psychological science JO - Psychol Sci VL - 20 IS - 1 N2 - Positive intergroup contact has been a guiding framework for research on reducing intergroup tension and for interventions aimed at that goal. We propose that beyond improving attitudes toward the out-group, positive contact affects disadvantaged-group members' perceptions of intergroup inequality in ways that can undermine their support for social change toward equality. In Study 1, participants were assigned to either high- or low-power experimental groups and then brought together to discuss either commonalities between the groups or intergroup differences. Commonality-focused contact, relative to difference-focused contact, produced heightened expectations for fair (i.e., egalitarian) out-group behavior among members of disadvantaged groups. These expectations, however, proved unrealistic when compared against the actions of members of the advantaged groups. Participants in Study 2 were Israeli Arabs (a disadvantaged minority) who reported the amount of positive contact they experienced with Jews. More positive intergroup contact was associated with increased perceptions of Jews as fair, which in turn predicted decreased support for social change. Implications for social change are considered. SN - 1467-9280 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/19152543/The_irony_of_harmony:_intergroup_contact_can_produce_false_expectations_for_equality_ L2 - https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9280.2008.02261.x?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori:rid:crossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub=pubmed DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -