How a tolerant past affects the present: historical tolerance and the acceptance of Muslim expressive rights.

Abstract

Three studies, conducted in The Netherlands, examined the relationship between a tolerant representation of national history and the acceptance of Muslim expressive rights. Following self-categorization theory, it was hypothesized that historical tolerance would be associated with greater acceptance of Muslim expressive rights, especially for natives who strongly identify with their national in-group. Furthermore, it was predicted that the positive effect of representations of historical tolerance on higher identifiers' acceptance could be explained by reduced perceptions of identity incompatibility. The results of Study 1 confirmed the first hypothesis, and the results of Study 2 and Study 3 supported the second hypothesis. These findings underline the importance of historical representations of the nation for understanding current reactions toward immigrants. Importantly, the results show that a tolerant representation of national history can elevate acceptance of immigrants, especially among natives who feel a relatively strong sense of belonging to their nation.

DOI: 10.1177/0146167212450920

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Cite this paper

@article{Smeekes2012HowAT, title={How a tolerant past affects the present: historical tolerance and the acceptance of Muslim expressive rights.}, author={Anouk Smeekes and Maykel Verkuyten and E. -J. Poppe}, journal={Personality & social psychology bulletin}, year={2012}, volume={38 11}, pages={1410-22} }