Research Proposal: Unearthing of Implicit Evaluations

Every day we walk about our lives making first impressions. Some of these first impressions stick and many quickly fade away to be forgotten as we develop relationships or discover new truths. Unconscious biases pervade all throughout our society. They shape our society and how we perceive it, and the people within it. For example, racism is a huge problem in our society, and it always has been. It completely divides us, the inhabitants of this world we were given to live and prosper on. Can it be defeated? How do can people make comments like “I’m not racist, but……fill in racist comment here”, and truly believe they are not racist?

Many believe it’s because they make implicit evaluations rather than explicit about the people group they were talking racist about. Explicit evaluations are ones we are self aware of, whereas implicit evaluations are buried beneath the surface and we can’t as easily access why we feel that way or even that we truly feel that way, because they are more similar to our unconscious opinions. This is what I believe has kept our society in a continuous cycle of dealing with the same problems. You can not fully address and abolish problems or ideas that you are not fully aware you even have. My quest is to find how we can unearth implicit evaluations to be able to defeat social problems such as racism. Will my concluding theory be able to help others and myself to address deep seeded positions that they no longer want to have?

Works Cited

  1. Mann, Thomas C., and Melissa J. Ferguson. “Can We Undo Our First Impressions? The Role of Reinterpretation in Reversing Implicit Evaluations.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 108.6 (2015): 823-49. Web. 7 Oct. 2015. <;.
  2. Sritharan, Rajees, and Bertram Gawronski. “Changing Implicit and Explicit Prejudice.” Social Psychology 41.3 (2010): 113-23. Web. 7 Oct. 2015. <;.
  3. Petty, Richard E., and Pablo Briñol. “A Metacognitive Approach to “implicit” and “explicit” Evaluations: Comment on Gawronski and Bodenhausen (2006).” Psychological Bulletin 132.5 (2006): 740-44. Web. 7 Oct. 2015. <;.
  4. Kalmijn, Matthijs, and Gerbert Kraaykamp. “Social Stratification and Attitudes: A Comparative Analysis of the Effects of Class and Education in Europe1.” Social Stratification and Attitudes: A Comparative Analysis of the Effects of Class and Education in Europe. The British Journal of Sociology, 7 Dec. 07. Web. 14 Oct. 2015.

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