"I like my beer cold, my TV loud, and my homosexuals flaming!" : preference for stereotype consistency as a function of a person x situation interaction /
Sangalang, P. J.
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The study centers on the power of Right-Wing Authoritarianism (RWA) and Social Dominance Orientation (SDO) as predictors of prejudice against stereotypical and nonstereotypical homosexuals under the threat of death and the threat of uncertainty. Right-wing authoritarianism (RWA) is an individual difference variable that measures the tendency for individuals to unquestionably follow those perceived to be authorities. Social Dominance Orientation (SDO) is an individual difference variable that measures the degree to which an individual prefers inequality among social groups. The RWA and SDO Scales are considered to be two of the strongest predictors of prejudice, such as prejudice against homosexuals. The study focuses on the unique predictive power of these two variables in predicting prejudice against homosexuals. The study also examines the role of situational threat in prejudice, specifically the threat of death (mortality salience) and the threat of uncertainty (uncertainty salience). Competing predictions from theories involving the threat of death (Terror Management Theory) and the threat of uncertainty (Uncertainty Management Theory) are also tested. The preference for expected information in the form of stereotypes concerning male homosexuals (that is, a stereotypical or non-stereotypical homosexual) were tested. The difference between the predictive power ofRWA and SDO was examined by measuring how these variables predict liking of a stereotypical or non-stereotypical homosexual under the threat of death, the threat of uncertainty, or a control condition. Along with completing a measure for RWA and a measure for SDO, participants were asked to think of their own death, of their being uncertain or about watching television then were asked to read about a week in the life of either a stereotypical or non-stereotypical male homosexual. Participants were then asked to evaluate the individual and his essay. Based on the participants' evaluations, results from 180 heterosexual university students show that RWA and SDO are strong predictors for disliking of a stereotypical homosexual under the threat of uncertainty and disliking of a non-stereotypical homosexual under the threat of death. Furthermore, however, results show that RWA is a particularly strong predictor of disliking of a stereotypical homosexual under the threat of uncertainty, whereas SDO is an exceptionally strong predictor of disliking of the non-stereotypical homosexual under the threat of death. This further adds to the notion that RWA and SDO are indeed unique predictors of prejudice. Implications are also explored, including the fact that the study simuhaneously examined the role of individual difference variables and situational threat variables, as well as exploratory analysis on Dominating Authoritarians.