Sexual Selection and the Psychological Architecture of Race Prejudice
Monday, April 4th
Carlos David Navarrete, Ph.D.
Visiting Scholar, UCLA Center for Behavior, Evolution & Culture
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology
Michigan State University
For more information about the speaker, visit his website.
For the abstract, click "read more" below.
Threats from men belonging to a social group other than one's own pose different adaptive challenges for men and women. As such, the psychological adaptations that operate to cope with such threats may differ between the sexes as well. Since racial categories are often mentally represented as group-like entities, modern race bias may be understandable within this general framework. Results from several studies are consistent with this perspective, and show that (a) race bias is primarily directed at male exemplars of racial outgroups, (b) men are more likely to be aggressively prejudiced than women, and (c) women are more likely to be fearfully prejudiced than men, particularly during the fertile phase of the menstrual cycle. Illustrations of how these systems may be operative in "minimal groups," political attitudes and in voting preferences for Barack Obama are presented. These results are consistent with the notion that the psychology of intergroup prejudice is generated by different psychological systems between men and women, and provide the basis for a fuller understanding of the complexities of women's mate choices within intergroup contexts.