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Political Science Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

2016

Theses and Dissertations

Psychology

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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

Familiarity Bias: Examining A Cognitive-Affective Mechanism Underlying Ideological Support For The Status Quo, John C. Blanchar Aug 2016

Familiarity Bias: Examining A Cognitive-Affective Mechanism Underlying Ideological Support For The Status Quo, John C. Blanchar

Theses and Dissertations

It is well established that people like familiarity over novelty. Because that which is most familiar is frequently indicative of the way things are, favoring familiarity should create a psychological advantage for the status quo. In two studies, I tested the hypothesis that familiarity bias—susceptibility to the mere-exposure effect whereby attitude objects receive increasingly favorable evaluations due to repeated sensory experience—is foundational to ideological support for the status quo. In Study 1, individual variation in familiarity bias predicted greater Right-Wing Authoritarianism. Existential threat was experimentally manipulated via the salience of international terrorism in Study 2, but was unsuccessful ...