Number 24 (2013)

Jerzmanowska, A. (2013). Empathy and Interpersonal Decentration and the Radicalism of Social Attitudes

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Aleksandra Jerzmanowska
Szkoła Wyższa Psychologii Społecznej

The presented research deals with the relationships between readiness to experience empathy and interpersonal decentration and social radicalism. The participants (N=60) were randomly assigned to one of three experimental conditions: induced decentration, induced centration, and control condition. Readiness to experience empathy was measured with the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (Davis, 1983). The level of radicalism in social attitudes was measured by a specially developed Radicalism Questionnaire. As predicted, the results indicate that after induced decentration persons exhibited less radical social attitudes than in the neutral condition and less radical than in the centration condition. In the centration condition attitudes were the most radical. The results also show a weak negative correlation between the readiness to experience empathy and strength of social radicalism. Additionally an interaction effect was discovered between the level of empathy and activated centration, showing that the effect of activated centration on radicalism was stronger among persons with low empathetic disposition.

Keywords: decentration, empathy, radicalism of social attitudes

Cite this article as:

Jerzmanowska, A. (2013). Empathy and Interpersonal Decentration and the Radicalism of Social Attitudes. Psychologia Społeczna, 24, 67–79.
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