Rejection and Ideology: How Contemplating Social Rejection Leads to an Increased Positive Association between Opposite Perspectives and Moderates Other Effects

Brendan Molinar, Eastern Michigan University


Attempting to replicate the findings of Terror Management Theory, using a prime of social rejection in place of a mortality prime, this experiment attempted to establish whether or not contemplating social rejection possessed any immediate and direct effects on one’s personal and political ideology. Despite discovering no direct links where contemplating rejection caused people to be more ideologically conservative, as was our hypothesis, we did identify a strong positive association between two ideologically opposed worldviews following exposure to the prime. This paper discusses the descriptive statistics that were unveiled as a consequence of performing this experiment, and lays the foundation for understanding any effects between social rejection and a person’s personal and political ideology.