The existence and intensity of a conflict are dependent in part on the attitudes and emotions of an individual. Previous studies demonstrated the effectiveness of creating cognitive dissonance in order to change attitudes towards out-group members. The current study examines the ability to decrease negative emotions and to increase the empathy in a conflict situation through the induced compliance paradigm. An experiment was performed on 60 Jewish students in Israel regarding the context of the conflict between Jewish and Arab-Israeli citizens in Israel. Some of the participants (n=43) performed an induced-compliance task focused on writing an essay as an Arab-Israeli student about their emotions after reading an authentic case study. Results revealed that after performing the task, cognitive empathy decreased significantly, while hatred levels increased significantly. In general, activities which were hypothesized to decrease negative emotions and increase empathy caused opposite effects. Findings are discussed in the context of this study’s hypothesis and in respect to related research in this field. Insights from this study may provide useful recommendations for building experimental frameworks which aim to develop and increase empathy during conflict situations. Future research directions are discussed in the context of emotion regulation in regards to inter-group conflict.
Edelstein, Roi and Rosen, Yigal
"The Effect of the Induced Compliance Paradigm on Emotions During Inter-group Conflict,"
Peace and Conflict Studies: Vol. 22
, Article 2.
Available at: https://nsuworks.nova.edu/pcs/vol22/iss2/2