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PNB Colloquium - Clara Wilkins - Is LGBT progress seen as an attack on Christians? Examining Christian/ sexual orientation zero-sum beliefs
- Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour
- 02.03.2022 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
University of Washington
Is LGBT progress seen as an attack on Christians? Examining Christian/ sexual orientation zero-sum beliefs
As social policies have changed to grant more rights to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals, some Christians in the U.S. have suggested that LGBT rights impede Christians’ religious freedom. In my talk, I will describe five studies that examine the causes and consequences of zero-sum beliefs (ZSBs) about Christians and LGBT individuals. I demonstrate that Christians’ beliefs about conflict with sexual minorities are shaped by their understandings of Christian values, social change, interpretation of the Bible, and in response to religious institutions. On average, Christians report perceiving that anti-LGBT bias has decreased over time and that anti-Christian bias has correspondingly increased: in other words, that gains for one group come at a cost for the other. Christians’ zero-sum beliefs (ZSBs) are heightened when they reflect on their religious values and in response to perceiving a changing cultural climate in which Christians’ influence is waning. A religious acceptance intervention successfully lowers ZSBs for mainline Christians. I will discuss future research directions as well as implications for sexual prejudice and intergroup conflict more generally.
Dr. Clara L. Wilkins is an Associate Professor and holds the Earl R. Carlson Endowed Professorship in the department of Psychology at the University of Washington. Before returning to UW (this year) she was a faculty member at Washington University in St Louis and spent 7 years at Wesleyan University. She completed her Ph.D. and M.S. at the University of Washington and her B.A. with honors at Stanford University.
A fellow of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology, she serves on several editorial boards including the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Her research has been supported by NSF, the Ford Foundation and Templeton Religion Trust.
Dr. Wilkins’ research examines prejudice, stereotyping, and the self. She explores how social change (e.g. racial and gender progress) affects high-status groups’ perceptions of victimization. She also examines how variation in racial and ethnic minorities’ physical appearance shapes stereotyping and identification. The over-arching goal of her work is to understand social inequities in order to minimize their negative effects on individuals, groups and society.
Host: Hasan Siddiqui ()