Video games intensify anti-Arab stereotypes, new study shows

ANN ARBOR – Playing violent video games about terrorism strengthens negative stereotypes about Arabs, even when Arabs are not portrayed in the games.

That is one of the findings of an innovative new study in the January issue of Psychology of Violence, a peer-reviewed journal published by the American Psychological Association. Continue reading

Chain of violence: Study shows impact on Palestinian and Israeli children

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Children exposed to ethnic and political violence in the Middle East are more aggressive than other children, a new study shows.  And the younger children are, the more strongly they are affected, in a “chain of violence” that goes from political and ethnic strife, to violence in communities, schools, and families, and ends with their own aggressive behavior.

“Our results have important implications for understanding how political struggles spill over into the everyday lives of families and children,” says psychologist Paul Boxer, lead author of the study. Continue reading

David Harding: Interrogating the truth of the American Dream

David HardingPart of the fun—and challenge—of field research is coping with the odd curve ball. For sociologist David Harding, one episode in particular stands out.

It was the summer of 2003, and Harding, then pursuing his doctorate in sociology and social policy at Harvard, was trying to recruit 60 8- to 13-year-old boys from three poor, mostly African-American neighborhoods in Boston to interview in-depth. Continue reading