Rituals and Excitation Transfer: The Effects of Arousal on Social Behaviour & Religious Primes and Decision Making

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Rok publikování 2013
Druh Další prezentace na konferencích
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Popis Many religious rituals involve highly arousing stimuli and literature suggests that arousal can alter (mainly amplify) various emotions. For example, it has been shown in laboratory settings that at the individual level arousal can produce residual excitement that serves to intensify later emotional states like aggression, sexual attraction or humour appreciation. Recent field studies, concentrating with greater ecological validity on the collective dimension of arousal, show that participants as well as spectators of religious rituals can share arousal to a great extent, and that highly arousing rituals can promote pro-social behaviour. However, it is yet to be established how arousal may influence prosociality and under what conditions arousal may produce pro-social effects. Here I discuss design of my recent study I conduct in controlled laboratory conditions in Brno, Czech Republic. The key research question addressed is whether (given the right prime) physiological arousal can influence social behaviour. More specifically, whether physiological arousal (given the right conditions for excitation transfer to occur) can result in increased pro-social or anti-social behaviour (given the right prime) My rationale is based on the Excitation transfer theory from previous psychological research which states that, if certain conditions are met, arousal elicited by one stimulus can be mistakenly attributed to another. I also present four religious priming and self-control studies we plan to run during August and September 2013 on different locations (Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Germany and Mauritius). They include studies using contextual religious prime (or cross religious contextual primes) and combination of the delayed gratification task and random allocation game.
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