A Tale of Two Cues: the Impact of Subliminal Versus Implicit Appeals on Racialized Issue Opinions
36 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2011 Last revised: 25 Aug 2011
Date Written: 2011
While the bulk of the implicit priming literature relies on the use of imagery to prime stereotypical considerations (Mendelberg 2001; Valentino, Hutchings, and White 2002), rhetorical cues have also been shown to prime stereotypes subconsciously, either through the use of carefully crafted, racially charged rhetoric (Hurwitz and Peffley 1997, 2005; Peffley, Hurwitz, and Sniderman 1997; White 2007) and experimentally through the use of subliminal cues (Kam 2007; Weinberger and Westen 2008). These priming cues have not however been tested against one another, as a means of determining which has the greatest influence activating stereotypical considerations and subsequently influencing opinion. Using a 2x2, between-subjects design (with control), I test the degree to which varied stereotypical appeals influence opinion on a series of issues. The evidence from two experiments suggests that the effects of racial primes are moderated by both subjects’ accessibility of racial stereotypes as well as their racial background, providing fertile ground for future research in racial priming.
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