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

Authors
  • Smeekes, Anouk
  • Verkuyten, Maykel
  • Poppe, Edwin
Type
Published Article
Journal
Personality & social psychology bulletin
Publication Date
Nov 01, 2012
Volume
38
Issue
11
Pages
1410–1422
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1177/0146167212450920
PMID: 22715126
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

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.

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