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On the flexibility of attention to race

Correll, J., Guillermo, S. and Vogt, J. (2014) On the flexibility of attention to race. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 55. pp. 74-79. ISSN 0022-1031

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2014.05.013

Abstract/Summary

Research on the flexibility of race-based processing offers divergent results. Some studies find that race affects processing in an obligatory fashion. Other studies suggest dramatic flexibility. The current study attempts to clarify this divergence by examining a process that may mediate flexibility in race-based processing: the engagement of visual attention. In this study, White participants completed an exogenous cuing task designed to measure attention to White and Black faces. Participants in the control condition showed a pronounced bias to attend to Black faces. Critically, participants in a goal condition were asked to process a feature of the stimulus that was unrelated to race. The induction of this goal eliminated differential attention to Black faces, suggesting that attentional engagement responds flexibly to top-down goals, rather than obligatorily to bottom-up racial cues.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Department of Psychology
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Social
ID Code:37683
Uncontrolled Keywords:Attention; Race; Goals; Threat
Publisher:Elsevier

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