When thinking about less failure causes more dissonance: The effect of elaboration and recall on behavior change following hypocrisy

Jeff Stone, Nicholas C. Fernandez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present experiment examined the effect of elaboration and recall on the dissonance that motivates hypocrites to change their behavior when they think about their past failures. After advocating the use of sunscreen, participants recalled either two or eight past failures under low or high-elaboration conditions. The results showed that under low elaboration, 68% who recalled eight past failures acquired a sample of sunscreen compared to 39% who recalled two past failures. However, under high elaboration, 82% participants who recalled two past failures acquired a sample of sunscreen compared to 52% who recalled eight past failures. The discussion focuses on new insights into the processes that impact the recruitment of cognitions into the dissonance ratio when people conduct an act of hypocrisy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-211
Number of pages13
JournalSocial Influence
Volume6
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2011

Keywords

  • Cognitive dissonance
  • Ease-of-retrieval
  • Elaboration
  • Hypocrisy
  • Sunscreen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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