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"Treating" prejudice: an exposure-therapy approach to reducing negative reactions toward stigmatized groups.

Birtel, MD and Crisp, RJ (2012) "Treating" prejudice: an exposure-therapy approach to reducing negative reactions toward stigmatized groups. Psychol Sci, 23 (11). pp. 1379-1386.

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Abstract

One of the ways in which therapists treat anxiety disorders is to expose patients to a fear-evoking stimulus within a safe environment before encouraging more positive stimulus-related thoughts. In the study reported here, we adapted these psychotherapeutic principles of exposure therapy to test the hypothesis that imagining a positive encounter with a member of a stigmatized group would be more likely to promote positive perceptions when it was preceded by an imagined negative encounter. The results of three experiments targeting a range of stigmatized groups (adults with schizophrenia, gay men, and British Muslims) supported this hypothesis. Compared with purely positive interventions, interventions in which a single negative encounter was imagined just prior to imagining a positive encounter resulted in significantly reduced prejudice. Furthermore, reduced anxiety uniquely derived from the mixed-valence imagery task statistically explained enhanced intentions to engage positively with the previously stigmatized group in the future.

Item Type: Article
Authors :
NameEmailORCID
Birtel, MDm.birtel@surrey.ac.ukUNSPECIFIED
Crisp, RJUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date : 2012
Identification Number : https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797612443838
Uncontrolled Keywords : Adolescent, Adult, Anxiety, Female, Homophobia, Humans, Imagination, Implosive Therapy, Islam, Male, Prejudice, Schizophrenia, Stereotyping, Young Adult
Related URLs :
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 May 2017 10:18
Last Modified : 17 May 2017 10:18
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/827255

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