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|Title:||Stigma by Association and Disease Avoidance Theory: Proposing a Model for the Stigma by Association Effects of Physical Deviations|
|Abstract:||We conducted two studies to explore the potential relationship between disease avoidance theory and the stigma by association effects of physical deviations. In both studies, participants viewed images of a target depicted alongside an associate with or without a facial stigma and indicated their social comfort with the target. In Study 1, we tested perceived vulnerability to disease (PVD) as a predictor of social comfort. We expected that higher levels of PVD would predict less social comfort when the target had a stigmatized associate. PVD was not found to be a significant predictor of social comfort. However, a significant main effect was found such that participants indicated more social comfort with the target when the target had a stigmatized associate, which led us to investigate the role of ambivalent attitudes in the second study. In Study 2, we tested disgust sensitivity as a predictor of social comfort and expected that higher levels of disgust sensitivity would predict less social comfort when the target had a stigmatized associate. In addition, we investigated whether ambivalent attitudes (specifically feelings of admiration and pity) predicted social comfort. Disgust sensitivity, admiration, and pity were not found to significantly predict social comfort with the target. In addition, the significant main effect found in Study 1 was not replicated in Study 2. As this was a novel study investigating the potential relationship between stigma by association and disease avoidance theory, we recommend that future research should continue exploring this topic.|
|Type of Material:||Princeton University Senior Theses|
|Appears in Collections:||Psychology, 1930-2016|
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