Monday, September 9, 2019

Social Misfit or Normal Development? Students Who Do Not Date have good social skills and low depression, same suicidal ideations

Social Misfit or Normal Development? Students Who Do Not Date. Brooke Douglas, Pamela Orpinas. Journal of School Health, September 4 2019.

OBJECTIVE: Prior research identified 4 distinct dating trajectories from 6th to 12th grade: Low, Increasing, High Middle School, and Frequent. The purpose of this study was to examine whether 10th graders in the Low dating group differed on emotional, interpersonal, and adaptive skills from youth in the other trajectories.

METHODS: The sample consisted of 594 10th graders. We compared the 4 dating groups using teacher ratings (social skills, leadership, depression) and student self‐reports (positive relationships with friends, at home, and at school; depression, suicidal ideation). To compare scores by dating trajectory, we used chi‐square test and analysis of variance.

RESULTS: Students in the Low dating group had significantly higher teacher ratings of social skills and leadership, and lower ratings of depression compared to the other groups. Self‐reports of positive relationships did not differ by dating groups. Self‐reported depression was significantly lower in the Low dating group, but suicidal ideations did not differ.

CONCLUSION: Adolescents who were not in a romantic relationship had good social skills and low depression, and fared better or equal to peers who dated. These results refute the notion that non‐daters are maladjusted. Health promotion interventions in schools should include non‐dating as one option of healthy development.

Based on a large number of studies with US participants & small sample sizes, the dominant view in social psychology holds that high-status actors behave less prosocial & more unethical; not reproducible

Social Status, Altruistic Giving and Reciprocity: Results of a Quasi-Experiment with Subjects from the USA. Andreas Tutić, Ulf Liebe. Zeitschrift für Soziologie, Volume 48, Issue 3, Aug 7 2019,

Abstract: In empirical social research, there is mixed evidence regarding the interplay of social status and prosocial behavior. Based on a large number of studies with subjects from the USA and small sample sizes, the dominant view in social psychology holds that high-status actors behave less prosocial and more unethical than low-status actors. Sociological studies with subjects from Europe support the opposite conclusion. In our study, 1003 subjects from the USA played three types of dictator games, which tap three different forms of prosocial behavior, i. e. altruistic giving and direct as well as indirect reciprocity. We consistently find that high-status actors make higher donations in dictator games than low-status actors. At the same our findings indicate that high-status actors tend towards direct reciprocity whereas low-status actors tend towards indirect reciprocity.

Keywords: Dictator Games; Exchange Relationships; Communal Relationships; Interaction Effect

15 years of data on all felony sex offenders sentenced in a single state: Male sex offenders are more likely to be sentenced to prison, and given longer terms, than females, regardless of crime severity and the victim being a minor

The Gender Gap in Sex Offender Punishment. Ryan T. Shields, Joshua C. Cochran. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, May 31 2019.

Objectives: This paper tests theoretical arguments that suggest court actors hold gendered views of sex offenders that result in a gender gap in sex offender punishment, where women who commit sexual offenses are treated more leniently than their male counterparts.

Methods: We test this argument with precision matching analyses using 15 years of data on all felony sex offenders sentenced in a single state.

Results: Results indicate that gender disparities in sex offender sentencing exist and are pervasive across sex offense types. Specifically, male sex offenders are more likely to be sentenced to prison, and given longer terms, than female sex offenders. Findings are similar across sex offense severity and whether the offense involved a minor victim.

Conclusions: These findings suggest that female sex offenders are treated more leniently than their matched male counterparts, even in instances of more serious sex offenses and those involving minor victims. Findings support theoretical arguments that contend that court decision-making is influenced by legally-irrelevant characteristics and raise questions about the source of gendered views of sex offenders and their effects on punishment approaches. Findings also raise questions about the virtue of get-tough sentencing policies that provide leeway for such dramatic variation across different groups of people.

Keywords: Gender Punishment Sentencing Sex offender

Check also Douglass, Melanie Dawn, D'Aguanno, Sofia and Jones, Sophie (2019) Women as Active Agents: Female Perpetrators of Sexual Harassment and Domestic Abuse. Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences. (In Press).

From 2018... To Control or Be Controlled: Predicting Types of Offending in a Corporate Environment Using Control-Balance Theory

To Control or Be Controlled: Predicting Types of Offending in a Corporate Environment Using Control-Balance Theory. Donald E. Hunt, Volkan Topalli. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, September 2019, Volume 35, Issue 3, pp 435–464. August 24 2018.

Introduction: This study seeks to determine the extent to which Tittle’s control balance (CB) theory (CBT: 1995) accurately predicts different types of deviance within a corporate setting (in this case, a financial services corporation). CB theory contends that deviance is the result of a control imbalance between the amount of control a person exerts and the amount to which they are subject. Control deficits result in repressive deviance (including most types of predatory crime). Control surpluses result in autonomous deviance (including many types of white collar offending).

Method: We exploit a unique dataset consisting of the internal investigations of fraud conducted by a large United States-based financial services company to explore these concepts in the corporate sales environment.

Results: Consistent with the theory, we find that a control surplus predicts certain autonomous deviance while a control deficit explained some repressive forms of criminality. Results also indicate that a control imbalance is incremental in nature and not simply a balanced/non-balanced condition. Further discussion revolves around implications, limitations, and future research.

Keywords: Control-balance theory Corporate deviance White collar crime

Jonathan Haidt proposed innate, universally observable moral intuitions (moral foundations); care and fairness are primarily due to genetic influences (73 and 51pct)

The Study of Personality Architecture and Dynamics (SPeADy): A Longitudinal and Extended Twin Family Study. Christian Kandler, Angelika Penner, Julia Richter & Alexandra Zapko-Willmes. Twin Research and Human Genetics, September 9 2019.

Abstract: The Study of Personality Architecture and Dynamics (SPeADy) is a German research project that aims to investigate the sources of interindividual differences in intraindividual personality development. The main focus lies in the dynamic interplay between more stable core characteristics and more environmentally malleable surface characteristics, as well as between personality and life experiences over time. SPeADy includes a twin family study encompassing data from 1962 individuals (age: 14–94) of 682 families, including 570 complete twin pairs (plus 1 triplet set), 327 parents, 236 spouses and 145 children of twins. Data collection started in 2016 and data from the first wave are currently obtainable as open source. Available data comprise a broad range of personality variables, such as personality trait constructs, motives, interests, values, moral foundations, religiosity and self-related concepts. For the currently ongoing second wave of data collection, we added retrospective reports on major life events. Special features of this genetically informative study are the extended twin family data and its longitudinal design. Three assessment waves in 2 years’ intervals are planned until 2022. In this article, we briefly describe the design and contents of the SPeADy twin family study as well as some recent findings, future plans and open science issues.

Echo chambers and polarisation in the German federal election 2017: Our findings suggest that there is no echo chamber in political communication on Facebook in Germany

Echo chambers and polarisation in the German federal election 2017. Wolf J. Schünemann, Stefan Steiger, Fritz Kliche. Panel "Political Organisations and the Digital", ECPR General Conference, August 2018, Hamburg.

Abstract: This paper examines the phenomenon of polarisation and radicalisation and in particular tests the echo chamber hypothesis for explaining these prominently discussed features of current political communication. To investigate these phenomena, we draw on a sample of 1.3 million posts and comments from public Facebook profiles of German political parties. The data was collected during the federal election campaign in 2017 and therefore a phase of heightened political debate. In order to identify potential echo chambers we built on selective exposure theory and therefore focused on practices of information sharing on respective profiles. Specifically, we investigated the sharing of links (URLs) and tried to identify, whether users of different party pages were referring to different (more reassuring) sources. Focusing on polarisation we employed different corpus linguistic tools such as topic modelling, cluster and keyword analysis in order to identify differences in respective discourses. While being tentative, our findings suggest that there is no echo chamber in political communication on Facebook in Germany. Instead of distinct sets of different sources, we found that all parties refer to more or less the same leading media outlets. We found only few sources that could be clearly identified as being partisan.With regard to polarisation, we found that there is a clear distinction regarding the tonality of discourse on the different profiles. Uncivil language featured very prominently on the profile of the new German right-wing populist party (AfD).

Americans: Whereas collective memories showed positivity biases, there was a negativity bias in collective future thought, or decline in Americans’ representations of their nation across time, regardless of political orientation

How we have fallen: implicit trajectories in collective temporal thought. Jeremy K. Yamashiro & Henry L. Roediger III. Memory, Volume 27, 2019 - Issue 8, Pages 1158-1166.

ABSTRACT: Memory may play a critical role in the ability to imagine events in the future. While most work on this relation has concerned episodic memory and simulated episodic events in the future, the current study examines how collective memories relate to imagination for the collective future. Two thousand American participants provided events for (1) America’s origins, (2) normative events that all Americans should remember, and (3) events in America’s future. Each event was rated for emotional valence. Whereas collective memories – particularly origin events – showed pronounced positivity biases, there was a negativity bias in collective future thought, indicating an implicit trajectory of decline in Americans’ representations of their nation across time. Imagination for the social future may not be simulated based on the template of collective memories, but may rather relate to the past in a way that is mediated by cultural narrative schemata.

KEYWORDS: Collective memory, collective future thought, national narratives, collective temporal thought, sociocultural psychology

Implicit trajectories in collective temporal thought

Self-enhancement, righteous anger, and moral grandiosity

Self-enhancement, righteous anger, and moral grandiosity. Jeffrey D. Green, Constantine Sedikides, Daryl R. Van Tongeren, Anna M. C. Behler & Jessica M. Barber. Self and Identity, Volume 18, 2019 - Issue 2, Pages 201-216.

Abstract: Do people self-enhance by dwelling in righteous anger in an effort to preserve their self-views as pillars of morality? We addressed this question in two experiments. Participants read a story about an injustice (experiencing righteous anger) or grocery shopping (experiencing neutral emotion), indicated their interest in reading injustice-relevant or happiness-relevant newspaper articles, and rated themselves on moral and agentic traits. Participants who experienced righteous anger (vs. neutral emotion) maintained their anger (i.e., exhibited stronger interest in reading injustice- than happiness-relevant articles) and rated themselves more positively on moral, but not on agentic, traits. Furthermore, anger maintenance mediated the effect of righteous anger on moral grandiosity. The findings illustrate tactical self-enhancement: the instrumental use of one’s negative emotions for self-enhancement purposes.

Keywords: Self-enhancement, anger, moral grandiosity, self-views, emotion regulation