Interactive Effects of Cognitive Representations of Formidability and Technology on Aggression
Final rept. 1 Sep 2010-31 May 2014
CALIFORNIA UNIV LOS ANGELES OFFICE OF CONTRACTS AND GRANTS ADMINISTRATION
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This project demonstrated that, in individual decision making, a single cognitive representation captures the three components of threat assessment fighting capacity of the foe relative to self, likelihood that the foe will attack, and assets at risk if the foe attacks. The visualized physical size and strength of an individual foe, or of a representative of an enemy coalition, summarizes these assessments and their constituents. This was explored by manipulating a the fighting capacity of the assessor b the fighting capacity of the foe and c the likelihood that the foe would attack and by examining d natural variation in assets at risk. In the final year, research was published on the contributions to representations of a potential foe of i own physical strength per a ii participation in synchronized behavior per a iii knowledge of anothers propensity to take risks per c iv status as a parent per d and v hormonal status per d. Papers under review or in preparation address vi cultural stereotypes regarding the propensity toward violence per c vii signals of commitment to a hostile coalition per c viii the role of personality per c and ix the effects of religious cognition per a. In sum, employing simple, field-deployable methods suitable for use with pre-literate populations, it is possible to assess diverse components of judgments of the threat posed by potential adversaries.