Friday, February 8, 2019

Anxious attachment (hypervigilant detection of and reactivity to social inconsistency and unreliability) heightens pattern deviancy (distortions of repeated forms or models) aversion, contributing to prejudice

Anxious Attachment as an Antecedent of People's Aversion Towards Pattern Deviancy. Anton Gollwitzer, Margaret S. Clark. European Journal of Social Psychology, Dec 2018,

Abstract: Research suggests that people's aversion towards pattern deviancy – distortions of repeated forms or models – contributes to social phenomena, such as prejudice. Yet, the factors motivating pattern deviancy aversion remain unclear. Potentially, anxious attachment, as it entails hypervigilant detection of and reactivity to social inconsistency and unreliability, heightens pattern deviancy aversion. In Studies 1 (N = 137) and 2 (N = 102), anxious but not avoidant attachment predicted aversion towards broken patterns of geometric shapes. In Studies 3 (N = 310) and 4 (N = 470), experimentally inducing anxious versus avoidant and secure attachment (Study 3), and versus a neutral prime (Study 4), heightened pattern deviancy aversion. Controlling for participants’ aversion towards unbroken patterns, novel objects, and negative stimuli did not change these results. Our findings demonstrate that anxious attachment is one antecedent of pattern deviancy aversion, and suggest that pattern deviancy aversion may underlie links between anxious attachment and certain social phenomena.

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