Standards and Expectancies

Contrast and Assimilation in Judgments of Self and Others

By Monica Biernat

© 2006 – Psychology Press

252 pages | 8 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9781138006003
pub: 2014-09-11
US Dollars$54.95
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Hardback: 9781841690681
pub: 2005-09-19
US Dollars$65.00
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About the Book

This book examines how standards and expectancies affect judgments of others and the self. Standards are points of comparison, expectancies are beliefs about the future, and both serve as frames of reference against which current events and people (including the self) are experienced. The central theme of the book is that judgments can be characterized as either assimilative or contrastive in nature. Assimilation occurs when the target of evaluation (another person, the self) is pulled toward or judged consistently with the standard or expectation, and contrast occurs when the target is differentiated from (judged in a direction opposite) the comparative frame. The book considers factors that determine whether assimilation versus contrast occurs, and focuses on the roles of contextual cues, the self, and stereotypes as standards for judging others, and the roles of internalized guides, stereotypes, and other people for judging the self.

Table of Contents

1. Standards and Expectancies: An Introduction and Overview. 2. Judging Others and the Self: Contextual factors affecting assimilation and contrast. 3. Models of Assimilation and Contrast. 4. Self and Other Exemplars as Standards for Judging Others. 5. Stereotypes and Stereotyping of Others. 6. Beyond Assimilation: Toward a Broader View of Stereotyping Effects. 7. Internalized guides as standards for judging the self. 8. Stereotypes as Standards for Judging the Self: Self-stereotyping. 9. Other People as Standards: Social Comparison. 10. Conclusion: Assimilation and Contrast Revisited.

About the Series

Essays in Social Psychology

Essays in Social Psychology is designed to meet the need for rapid publication of brief volumes in social psychology.

Primary topics will include social cognition, interpersonal relationships, group processes, and intergroup relations, as well as applied issues.

Furthermore, the series seeks to define social psychology in its broadest sense, encompassing all topics either informed by, or informing, the study of individual behavior and thought in social situations.

Each volume in the series will make a conceptual contribution to the topic by reviewing and synthesizing the existing research literature, by advancing theory in the area, or by some combination of these missions.

The principal aim is that authors will provide an overview of their own highly successful research program in an area.

It is also expected that volumes will, to some extent, include an assessment of current knowledge and identification of possible future trends in research.

Each book will be a self-contained unit supplying the advanced reader with a well-structured review of the work described and evaluated.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSY031000
PSYCHOLOGY / Social Psychology