Haecker, Christine Berta Maria (2010)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
I examined the processing of stereotype-relevant information during reading, in particular the degree to which stereotype-mismatch detection and resolution are resource-dependent. In addition I investigated the effects of stereotype-relevant episodic representations on subsequent linguistic and non-linguistic processing. Experiment 1 showed that reading participants looked longer at pronouns that mismatched the stereotypical gender of the agent than at stereotype-matching pronouns (e.g., “...the secretary familiarised herself/ himself...”). Experiment 1 also showed that mismatch detection can take place even when readers are cognitively busy, but that later integration processes might be compromised, resulting in an increased memory bias. Experiments 2 and 3 showed that the episodic representations resulting from reading stereotype-relevant sentences are strong and stable enough to cancel out a mismatch effect in a second sentence, unless the stereotypical representation is reemphasised by a repetition of the occupation label. Experiments 4 to 7 showed that gender-categorisation was facilitated for target faces that matched rather than mismatched a priming stereotypical occupation label (e.g., secretary); such an effect was not found for more complex prime stereotype- relevant sentences. It can be concluded that episodic stereotype-relevant representations can affect further processing of linguistic and non-linguistic information. This influence, however, is limited by existing stereotype representations.
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