Person Perception and Attribution

Person Perception and Attribution

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Person perception is of great importance in everyday life and human science. Judgment of other people's characteristics and intentions is important for suc- cessfully planning actions within a social environment. Questions about the formation of impressions and causal attributions are central to social psychology and the study of diagnostic judgment formation. The field of per- son perception deals with questions of how impression formation proceeds, what characteristics and intentions are attributed to other people, and how preformed schemata and stereotypes influence people's first impressions. Research on person perception developed rapidly after the Second World War. In the 1950s the precision and accuracy of person perception received special interest, but the problems concerning whether an individual's assessment of another personality is exact or not could not be solved. Another approach, which began in the 1940s and was derived from the Gestalt psychological tradi- tion, dealt with impression formation based on selected social cues. This ap- proach, which proved to be very useful, had considerable influence on both the research methods and the theoretical orientation of the research work. On the one hand, by using a combination of individual cues (like physical characteris- tics) researchers tried to ascertain how an impression of a person was formed. On the other hand, the Gestalt psychological orientation led to an interest in the process of person perception, which in the last 10 years has concentrated on questions concerning information reception and processing.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 313 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 17.53mm | 505g
  • Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. K
  • Berlin, Germany
  • English
  • Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1989
  • 26 Tables, black and white; X, 313 p.
  • 3642741320
  • 9783642741326

Table of contents

1. The First Impression.- Central Characteristics and Gestalt Perception.- Implicit Personality Theories Complete the First Impression.- Daring: Courage or Recklessness? Implicational Variety of Trait Adjectives.- Cognitive Representation of Persons.- Halo Effects: When Single Items of Information Are Dominated by the Overall Impression.- Order of Presentation of Information.- The First Impression: Practical Applications.- 2. Reasoning in Impression Formation.- Uncovering Relationships.- Subjective Probability Models of Stereotypes.- 3. Stereotypes.- Definitions and History of Research.- Areas of Stereotype Research.- Theories About Stereotypes.- Stereotype Research - Practical Applications.- 4. Attribution: Theories.- Causal Relations.- The Naive Analysis of Behavior.- Causal Schemata.- Discounting and Augmentation.- The Covariation Principle.- The Theory of Correspondent Inference.- Self-Perception.- Differing Perception of Causes by Actors and Observers.- Motivational Influences on the Attribution Process.- Attribution of Responsibility and Blame.- 5. Attribution: Applications.- Social Motives and Attribution: Achievement Behavior and Helping.- Self-fulfilling Prophecies and Processes of Expectation Confirmation.- Vocal Communication: Nonverbal Cues and Social Perception.- Person Perception in Social Interaction: Practical Areas of Application.- References.- Author Index.
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About Hans-Werner Bierhoff

Hans W. Bierhoff, seit 1992 Professor am Lehrstuhl Sozialpsychologie an der Ruhr-Universität Bochum
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