Parallel empathy and group attitudes in late childhood: The role of perceived peer group attitudes



Although several studies have examined outgroup empathy, the link between trait empathy and outgroup attitudes has been underinvestigated. In the present study this link was investigated among two samples of ethnic Dutch preadolescents (N = 335, Mage = 10.83 years, SD = 0.94; 53% girls; N = 326; Mage = 10.53 years, SD = 1.03; 48% girls). It examined children’s parallel empathy in relation to their ethnic attitudes, and the moderating role of perceived peer norms. Results (partly) support the hypotheses that empathy is associated with more outgroup positivity and less ingroup bias (ingroup minus outgroup attitude). The negative link between empathy
and outgroup bias was stronger when peers were perceived to be more biased against the outgroup.

This work was supported by the Swedish Research Council [2016-04165]; Dutch Research Council [2016-04165]; Riksbankens Jubileumsfond [P16-0446:1].
Date made available2020
Date of data production9 Oct 2020

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