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Ethical Ideologies and attitudes towards national group narratives Ayalon Ariel Abstract Which beliefs are related to an acceptance of the narrative of.

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Presentation on theme: "Ethical Ideologies and attitudes towards national group narratives Ayalon Ariel Abstract Which beliefs are related to an acceptance of the narrative of."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ethical Ideologies and attitudes towards national group narratives Ayalon Ariel Abstract Which beliefs are related to an acceptance of the narrative of one group as well as the narrative of the ‘opposing’ or 'other' group? The current study explored the relationships between ethical ideologies (Forsyth, 1980) and attitudes of Israelis towards their own collective narrative and towards the collective narrative of the Palestinians (Sagy, Adwan & Kaplan, 2002). The main hypothesis was that relativism would be related to an acceptance of both collective narratives. A community sample of 543 self-selected participants completed online questionnaires. Analyses of the data showed that relativism was correlated positively with feelings of pride towards both national narratives, thus supporting the main hypothesis. However, relativism showed no correlation with perceptions of legitimacy of either narrative. Further analyses showed that perceptions of legitimacy of the Palestinian narrative were predicted by an interaction between ethical ideologies and level of religiosity. The conclusion was that considering relativism and ethical ideologies may prove to be useful when trying to design interventions that aim to promote acceptance of adversary collective narratives in an ethnic conflict. Forsyth (1980) – Ethical Ideologies Individual variations in approaches to moral judgment and behavior may be conceptualized in terms of two basic dimensions: relativism and idealism. Forsyth recommends a four-fold classification based on both dimensions: High Idealism: Avoid Harm Low Idealism: Harm is sometimes Necessary AbsolutistExceptionist Low Relativism: Accept universal Moral codes SituationistSubjectivist High Relativism: Reject universal Moral codes Main Hypothesis: both Increased relativism beliefs would be related with increased acceptance of both Israeli and Palestinian collective narratives: Cognitively they will perceive both (Israeli and Palestinian) narratives as legitimate; Emotionally they won’t feel anger towards these different accounts of history Sample: A community sample of 543 self-selected Israeli-Jewish participants completed online questionnaires (Ayalon, 2009): Gender Gender: Male 31% Female 69% Religiosity Religiosity: Secular 64% Traditional 21% Religious 12% Ultra-Orthodox 3% Age Groups Age Groups: 10s 17% 20s 50% 30s 20% 40s 8% 50s+ 5% Results: Palestinian NarrativeIsraeli Narrative RelativismIdealismRelativismIdealism Legitimacy Empathy **.09Anger.31**.10.20**.23** Pride ** p <.000 Correlations between moral dimensions and attitudes towards groups narratives F = 2.18; p = Conclusions: (1) Relativism is directly correlated with the emotional component of the attitudes towards both national narratives thus should be useful on interventions aimed at easing tensions between the groups. (2) Ethical Ideologies are related to the cognitive component of the attitudes toward national narratives through more complex patterns. Forsyth, D.R. (1980). A taxonomy of ethical ideologies. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 39, Sagy, S., Adwan, S. & Kaplan, A. (2002). Interpretations of the Past and Expectations for the Future Among Israeli and Palestinian Youth. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry. 72 (1), 26–38. Ayalon, A. (2009). Midgam Project. Retrieved (09/01/2009), from Midgam Project Website: Sagy et.al. (2002) – Attitudes toward national narratives Inter-group relations provide different narratives and meanings to historical events that are perceived to be a meaningful part of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. For example, the two narratives concerning the 1948 war were introduced in the following questions: ** Many Jewish Israelis view the 1948 war (the war of independence) as an important event which symbolize their capacity for survival and independence. How do you feel about their attitude? ** Many Palestinians view the 1948 war (the war of independence) as a disaster for them. How do you feel about their attitude? Participants were asked to indicate their degree of agreement with a statement indicating to what extent they perceive the view presented as legitimate. They were also asked to indicate their emotional responses - their degree of empathy, pride and anger towards the narrative presented. Responses were on a scale of 1 (very untrue) to 5 (very true). Perceptions of legitimacy of the Palestinian narrative By ethical ideologies and religiosity Ben Gurion University of the Negev


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