British Journal of Social Psychology

Skip to Search

Skip to Navigation

Volume 34 Issue 3 (September 1995), Pages 223-350

Influence of level of identification with a group and physiological arousal on perceived intergroup complexity (pages 223-235)

Influence of group identification and physiological arousal on perceived intergroup complexity and intergroup evaluations were investigated. Group identification was examined because persons with differing levels of identification differ in the degree to which they possess stereotypes about groups while physiological arousal was investigated because of its known ability to limit cognitive capacity and potentially encourage the use of stereotypes. Specifically, increases in incidental arousal resulting from exercise were expected to result in increased stereotype use, reflected in differential intergroup complexity. This effect was expected only for those high in identification with the in‐group, for whom stereotypes were available. The results supported the predictions. In terms of group evaluations, an in‐group favouritism effect was found, although it was only exhibited by those high in identification. Arousal level did not significantly influence evaluation of groups. Thus, incidental arousal can decrease complexity, without simultaneously increasing negativity. Discussion focuses on the differences between the current method and those employed in past research.

Add This link

Bookmark and Share>