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Saying sorry: Shifting obligation after conciliatory acts satisfies perpetrator group members.

Zaiser, Erica, Giner-Sorolla, Roger (2013) Saying sorry: Shifting obligation after conciliatory acts satisfies perpetrator group members. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 105 (4). pp. 585-604. ISSN 0022-3514. E-ISSN 1939-1315. (doi:10.1037/a0033296) (KAR id:36644)

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How are intergroup conciliatory acts (apologies and reparations) evaluated by members of the perpetrator group offering them? This research tests whether these outcomes can be predicted by obligation shifting: the perception that a conciliatory act has shifted the onus away from the perpetrators and onto the victim group. Four experiments in different contexts examined 3 possible outcomes for members of the perpetrator group: satisfaction with the act, negative feelings toward the victims, and support for future assistance. Across all 4 experiments, perceptions of obligation shifting predicted satisfaction with conciliatory acts, as did the perception that the ingroup’s image had improved. Furthermore, obligation shifting alone related to more negative feelings about the victims and predicted reduced support for further acts of assistance. Image improvement perceptions did not show these effects, and sometimes were related to less negative feelings about the victims. Directly manipulating impressions of obligation shifting and image improvement (Experiment 3) showed these relationships were causal. When there were differences between types of acts on the 3 outcome variables, obligation shifting and image perceptions mediated these relationships. The negative implications of obligation shifting, as well as the more encouraging role of image improvement perceptions, are discussed.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1037/a0033296
Uncontrolled keywords: apologies, image improvement, obligation shifting, reparations, satisfaction, perpetrator group members, Conflict Resolution, Group Dynamics, Perpetrators, Satisfaction
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Roger Giner-Sorolla
Date Deposited: 20 Nov 2013 11:36 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:13 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Giner-Sorolla, Roger:
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