Counterfactual thinking and stereotypes: The nonconformity effect

  title={Counterfactual thinking and stereotypes: The nonconformity effect},
  author={Patrizia Catellani and Augusta Isabella Alberici and Patrizia Milesi},
  journal={European Journal of Social Psychology},
Past research has shown that counterfactual thinking (‘if only ... ’) is related to judgements of responsibility for negative events. It has also shown that behaviours deviating from the target’s own behavioural standard (intrapersonal norm) are likely to trigger counterfactuals—the so-called exceptional-routine effect. In the present research, we demonstrate that behaviours deviating from a social category’s behavioural standard (social norm) are also likely to trigger counterfactuals—what may… Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

Decisions about a crime: downward and upward counterfactuals
ABSTRACT Deciding about people’s responsibility, intentions and need for punishment is particularly hard and it may be often associated with counterfactual thinking, which refers to the creation ofExpand
The Strategic Use of Counterfactual Communication in Politics
While counterfactual thinking has been widely investigated, we know much less about how counterfactual (“If . . . then”) statements are employed in political communication. We analysed statementsExpand
The Effects of Counterfactual Attacks on the Morality and Leadership of Different Professionals
Past research has offered contrasting results regarding the effects of attacks on social judgments. In three experiments, we investigated the effects of counterfactual (“If only…”) andExpand
Does intentionality decision-making depend on who you are? The role of individual differences.
Intentionality attribution is a critical ability in everyday life, necessary for attributing meaning to others’ actions. Any impairment in its ascription has been shown to produce significantExpand
Counterfactual Thinking, Causation, and Covariation in Mock Juror Assessments of Negligence: Twenty‐Five Years Later
  • J. Cantone
  • Medicine, Psychology
  • Psychological reports
  • 2018
Overall, the research found support for norm theory and covariation, but mixed evidence regarding the role of counterfactual thinking and causation, while causal thinking more strongly affected causation and legal decisions. Expand
Counterfactual Communication in Politics: Features and Effects on Voters
This work first analyzed counterfactuals evoked by politicians during pre-electoral televised broadcasts, and analyzed the effects of defensive counterfactUALs on recipients, showing thatcounterfactual communication is an effective defensive strategy in political debates. Expand
Counterfactuals, the National Economy, and Voting Choice
Previous research has shown that counterfactual thinking (“if only…”) is related to event explanation, blame assignment, and future decisions. Using data from a large-scale electoral panel surveyExpand
The day after an electoral defeat: counterfactuals and collective action.
Results showed that abstract counterfactuals, dealing with the core elements of the elections, supported collectiveaction intention better than concrete ones, and predicted collective action intention through the mediation of group efficacy and group identification. Expand
The Effects of Counterfactual Attacks on Social Judgments
Two experiments were conducted to compare the effects of different styles of verbal criticism (factual vs. counterfactual) on the perceptions of target, source, and quality of the attack.Expand
How expert witnesses' counterfactuals influence causal and responsibility attributions of mock jurors and expert judges
Correspondence Patrizia Catellani, Department of Psychology, Catholic University of Milan, Milano, Italy. Email: Summary Past research has shown that counterfactualExpand


Counterfactuals and roles: mock victims' and perpetrators' accounts of judicial cases
Three studies assessed the influence of differential perspective taking on counterfactual thinking. In Study 1 male and female subjects were asked to play the role of, respectively, perpetrator andExpand
Counterfactual Thinking and Perceptions of Rape
Four studies examined the effect of counterfactual thinking on reactions to rape victims and rape perpetrators. One determinant of counterfactual thinking is whether the event is preceded by anExpand
The Role of Counterfactual Thinking in Judgments of Affect
The role of counterfactuals in judgments of affective reactions to outcomes was examined. Subjects read about individuals who experienced gains or losses as a result of either deciding to take actionExpand
Rape and Accident Counterfactuals: Who Might Have Done Otherwise and Would It Have Changed the Outcome?1
Four experiments assessed the blame assigned to the two persons involved in a rape or an auto accident. After reading a description of one of the events, participants were asked to generate differentExpand
Counterfactual thinking and ascriptions of cause and preventability.
Research suggests that counterfactuals and preventability ascriptions play an important role in determining the perceived cause of a target outcome, but results indicate that the primary criterion used to recruit causal ascriptions (covariation) differs from that used to recruited counterfactUALs (controllability). Expand
Counterfactual thinking and social perception : thinking about what might have been
Publisher Summary The chapter examines the influence of norms dominated by postcomputed representations on perceptions of social events. The aim is to simply encourage consideration of the role thatExpand
Counterfactual thinking.
  • N. Roese
  • Medicine
  • Psychological bulletin
  • 1997
The author reviews research in support of the assertions that (a) counterfactual thinking is activated automatically in response to negative affect, (b) the content ofcounterfactuals targets particularly likely causes of misfortune, (c) counter Factuals produce negative affective consequences through a contrast-effect mechanism and positive inferential consequencesthrough a causal-inference mechanism, and (d) the net effect of counterfactUAL thinking is beneficial. Expand
Counterfactual thinking in mock juror assessments of negligence: A preliminary investigation
This Research Report presents an initial attempt to apply the theory of counterfactual thinking to study the cognitive processes that underlie judgments of negligence. Subjects reviewed a summary ofExpand
Norm theory: Comparing reality to its alternatives
A theory of norms and normality is presented and applied to some phenomena of emotional responses, social judgment, and conversations about causes. Norms are assumed to be constructed ad hoc byExpand
The Structure of Counterfactual Thought
The structure of counterfactual thoughts (evaluations of past outcomes based on 'might have been" alternatives) was investigated. Subjects read stories describing a student preparing for an exam,Expand