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Exp Psychol. 2003;50(4):239-46.

I like her, because I like myself: self-evaluation as a source of interpersonal attitudes.

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  • 1University of Heidelberg, Germany. Eva.Walther@psychologie.uni-heidelberg.de


Two experiments tested the hypothesis that self-evaluation can serve as a source of interpersonal attitudes. In the first study, self-evaluation was manipulated by means of false feedback. A subsequent learning phase demonstrated that the co-occurrence of the self with another individual influenced the evaluation of this previously neutral target. Whereas evaluative self-target similarity increased under conditions of negative self-evaluation, an opposite effect emerged in the positive self-evaluation group. A second study replicated these findings and showed that the difference between positive and negative self-evaluation conditions disappeared when a load manipulation was applied. The implications of self-evaluation for attitude formation processes are discussed.

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