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Measures of stereotypes, affect, perceived threat and relative deprivation were used to predict attitudes toward three minority groups in Australia: Aboriginals, Asians and Arabs. Participants included 139 Anglo-Saxon volunteer university students (60 male, 79 female). The findings highlighted the fact that attitudes were significantly positive towards Aboriginals compared with attitudes towards Asians and Arabs. However, Asian stereotypes were distinctively positive compared to the two other target groups. Multiple regression analyses indicated that affective measures were often better predictors of attitudes towards minority groups. Overall, the results indicated the importance of emotional stakes as crucial components of racial attitudes in Australia. The implications of these findings suggest that attitude change programs, which have traditionally been based on simply changing cognitive aspects of attitudes (e.g., knowledge structures, facts about racial groups) should also take into consideration the roles of affective features of attitudes (e.g., anxiety, distrust, frustration evoked by racial groups).
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2001-01-01

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