Chapter

Interpersonal Foundations of Ideological Thinking

Curtis D. Hardin, Rick M. Cheung, Michael W. Magee, Steven Noel and Kasumi Yoshimura

in Ideology, Psychology, and Law

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199737512
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918638 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199737512.003.0004

Series: Series in Political Psychology

Interpersonal Foundations of Ideological Thinking

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Building upon research on the social-cognitive foundations of ideological thinking, we argue that allegiance to attitudes that explain and justify the status quo is motivated in part by the human need to connect with others through feelings of mutual understanding. We review evidence that endorsing attitudes that justify the status quo not only preserves and regulates existing interpersonal relationships but also facilitates the establishment and regulation of new relationships, focusing in particular on ideologies involving religion and intergroup prejudice. In this light, ideologies function as prepackaged units of interpretation that help regulate social and political life.

Keywords: ideology; interpersonal relationships; religion; implicit prejudice; implicit bias; stereotyping; attachment; social hierarchy; shared reality theory

Chapter.  11865 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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