Andrea Carnaghi Anne Maas

The effects of the derogatory group labels on the behavioral responses

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The present study aimed to examine whether neutral vs. derogatory labels may differ in terms of automatic evaluation. We decided to rely on the approach-avoidance task (IAAT, Castelli, Zogmaister, Smith, e Arcuri, 2004) in order to measure participants' behavioral responses towards two different classes of stimuli, namely the derogatory group labels ("fag" and "terrone") and the corresponding category group labels ("gay" and "southern"). Results showed that participants were faster to approach category labels than derogatory group labels, whereas participants tended to be faster to avoid derogatory group labels than category label. Results are discussed with respect to previous findings and applied implications are considered.


  • Derogatory group labels
  • approach avoidance paradigm
  • implicit measure of prejudice
  • attitude towards minority groups


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