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Irina Prusova 1, Olga Gulevich 2
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation
  • 2 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation

The Influence of Mortality Salience on Attitudes towards Other Countries: The Role of Right-Wing Authoritarianism

2020. Vol. 17. No. 3. P. 520–536 [issue contents]

In line with the Terror Management Theory, recognition of the inevitability of death induces the paralyzing fear. To reduce this fear, people use psychological defences. They demonstrate more positive attitudes towards those who are similar to them, and more negative towards those who are different. Mortality salience influences on attitudes towards individuals and social groups. The goal of the study was to analyse the effect of mortality salience on attitudes towards ‘hostile-oriented’ and ‘friendly-oriented’ outgroups. To examine the effect of mortality salience, we conducted experimental research. Students from two Russian universities (N = 80) participated in the study. Participants completed the online questionnaires to indicate the level of RWA and perceived threat from other countries. A week later, they arrived at the laboratory to take part in a two-factor experiment: 2 (mortality salience) x 2 (type of country). They watched videotapes with reminders of death or without it and, thereafter, demonstrated the level of sympathy, trust, and readiness to interact with inhabitants of the country. The results showed that mortality salience negatively influenced attitudes towards ‘hostile-oriented’ than towards ‘friendly-oriented’ country. This difference was moderated by RWA. After reminders of death, people with low RWA demonstrated the same positions towards ‘friendly’ and ‘hostile-oriented’ countries. At the same time, people with high RWA showed more positive attitudes towards inhabitants of ‘friendly-oriented’ country, whereas more negative towards people from ‘hostile-oriented’ country.

Citation: Prusova I., Gulevich O. (2020)  Vliyanie napominaniya o smerti na otnoshenie k drugim stranam:  rol' pravogo avtoritarizma [The Influence of Mortality Salience on Attitudes towards Other Countries: The Role of Right-Wing Authoritarianism]. Psychology. Journal of Higher School of Economics, vol. 17, no 3, pp. 520-536 (in Russian)
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