Saturday, August 21, 2021

Today’s young adults are ascribed a mixed stereotype content, subject to harsher social judgments than both older age groups & recollections of former generations at the same age, & victim of discriminatory behaviors

Francioli, S. P., & North, M. S. (2021). Youngism: The content, causes, and consequences of prejudices toward younger adults. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. Aug 2021.

Abstract: Research on ageism has focused largely on perceptions of and biases targeting older adults, implicitly assuming that age-based stigma increases throughout the life span and that young adults benefit from favorable views relative to their older counterparts. In a series of eight studies (N = 2,323), we provide evidence to the contrary. We theorize that, in sharp contrast with ageism toward older adults, which revolves around fear and discomfort with the target’s later life stage, youngism (i.e., ageism toward young adults) is primarily generationally focused, aiming at contemporaneous generations of young adults rather than young adults in general. Consistent with this theorizing, we find that today’s young adults are ascribed a mixed stereotype content (Study 1a–1c), subject to harsher social judgments than both older age groups (Study 2) and recollections of former generations at the same age (Study 3a and 3b), and victim of discriminatory behaviors (Study 4 and 5). By comprehensively documenting cognitive, emotional, and behavioral evidence of youngism, the present work challenges the idea that ageism only reflects a plight of later-life aging. Instead, we show not only that ageism can target other age groups but also that the nature and content of ageism vary across the life span.

Is Voting Transformative? Found no impact on voters' political knowledge, attitudes, or behaviors

Is Voting Transformative? Expanding and Meta-Analyzing the Evidence. John B. Holbein, Marcos A. Rangel, Raeal Moore & Michelle Croft. Political Behavior, Aug 20 2021.

Abstract: Voting is the foundational act of democracy. While thousands of studies have treated voting as a dependent variable, comparatively little research has studied voting as an independent variable. Here we flip the causal arrow and explore the effect of exogenous voting shocks on citizens’ broader attitudes and behaviors. To do so, we first use two waves from a uniquely large survey of young people in the United States, pairing this with a regression discontinuity design. We augment these results with a new meta-analysis of all causally-identified studies exploring whether voting is transformative. We find that—despite voting at much higher rates—individuals induced to vote, regardless of the mode used to mobilize, are (precisely) no different from all-else-equal individuals that are not. Our results illuminate the (non)consequences of a vitally important—and widely studied—political behavior and speak to the broader importance of voting as an object of study.

Sexual arousal evokes sexual disinhibition (increased self-reported likelihood to engage in uncommon, risky, and coercive sexual activities); among disinhibition indicators: "Can you imagine having sex with a 50-year-old woman/man?"

Sexual Disinhibition Under Sexual Arousal: Evidence for Domain Specificity in Men and Women. Roland Imhoff & Alexander F. Schmidt. Archives of Sexual Behavior volume 43, pages1123–1136, Aug 5 2021.

Abstract: Men have been shown to estimate their likelihood of engaging in sexually coercive behaviors and also uncommon and unprotected sexual behaviors as higher when they are in an acute state of sexual arousal. The present research sought to test (1) whether sexual arousal effects could be replicated under more controlled laboratory settings, (2) whether women showed the same pattern of results, and (3) whether this effect was specific to sexual disinhibition or would generalize to non-sexual disinhibited behavior. In two experimental studies, male and female participants (Study 1: N = 84; Study 2: N = 86) were either sexually aroused by acoustically presented erotic narratives or listened to sexually non-arousing neutral narratives. Afterwards, they self-estimated their likelihood of engaging in a variety of behaviors that could be characterized as sexual or non-sexual disinhibited behavior. Results replicated the previously established effect of sexual disinhibition under sexual arousal for men and provided the first evidence for a similar effect in women. No arousal effects were observed for non-sexual behavior, rendering alternative explanations based on mere indifferent responding unlikely. The discussion focused on a plausible explanation for this effect.


It is important to note here that we propose the term disinhibition as a characterization of the commonality of the three domains: Engaging in uncommon, morally questionable, and unsafe sexual behavior. Importantly, disinhibition here refers to the outcome of reporting greater likelihood of engaging in this behavior (i.e., an outcome that is less constrained by social norms and expectations of what might constitute socially desirable responses), not to the process. In terms of underlying processes, such an outcome may results from either reduced inhibitory processes or stronger approach motivation (see Toates, 2009; for a dual control model of inhibition and excitation, see also Bancroft & Janssen, 2000). Although Ariely and Loewenstein seemed to favor the latter explanation of an increase in the appetitive sexual system, we argue that alternative explanations are conceivable.