Can Attitude Change?

Monday, January 10, 2011 Jo Hanniffy 1 Comments

"Who says what to whom and with what effects". Hovlan, Kelly, Janis (1953).

Speaking about attitude it will remind us of LaPier study in 1934, how LaPier with his chinese couple friends found people's behaviour reacted differently from their attitudes. LaPier's and his friends were expecting no difficulty to find accomodation during their travel  and expecting undifferentiate-welcome of Americans attitudes and behaviours towards his chinesse couple friends. 

They were finding fine for the accomodations and in restaurants services. However, months later they  sent them a letter which was survey questions about whether they would accept or serve a chinese person or not. Surprisingly , LaPiere found 90 % of their answers said NO,  just view answering YES, and the rest was depend on the situation.

Hitherto, La Piere's finding influence other social psychologists to commit a deeper research about attitude and behaviour. What can actually influence a person's attitude to react differently from his or her behaviour? above all, here is the question: can attitude change?

We may wonder why we sometimes act differently from our thoughts, what can make us act in  a different way from our attitude?

Attitude has its own characteristics that can determine or predict to such a behaviour. These characteristics are developed by our surroudings or social world. For example in LaPiere's study, they may act different of attitude as that intra ethnics differential was sensitive; the situation i.e. issue matters about immigrants, has developed their attitudes toward immigrants.

Sounds like attitude is hard to change if it's believed that they're developed by our surroundings? Fortunately, it's not. Social psychologists believe that attitude can be changed by psychological efforts, and these efforts will involve several of important aspects, such as grassroots, local and central goverment.

A. The Persuasion

Persuasion can be done in three ways, is through audience, message, and affect. To its achievement these three ways may need  a cooperation between grassroots, local goverment, and professionals or intelectuals in its fields, by a formal education through at schools, champaigns, seminars, internet, etc.  Such as internet can also be a great advantage to spread the words when commit a champaign.

For example, you may want to people know that discrimination gives a bad effect to other person; to persuade people stop doing it is by briefing several of evidences from people who experience with it; spread your words to the world how you feel can touch other people's thoughts and hearts.

B. The Intention and Its Sanctions 

A sanction can prevent people to commit something against law. A champain about discrimination would not work at all if it's not supported by laws.

A persuasion may only change to some people's attitude and behaviour but not all of them. So a sanction would help its intention.

Above all, a cognitive dissonance may also help to change a person's attitude. Dissonance attitude similiar with ambivalance attitude, is in between two attitudes. Despite it deosn't give a strong influence of changing attitude but many psychologists infer it can reduce a prejudice towards something.

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1 comment:

Nice saying shows your character but that doesn't mean you can criticize. You can still do both in nice and polite way.

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