Minority influence

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  • AO1:
  • Minority influence:
  • A minority changes the opinions of others through internalisation. Minority infuence leads to internalisation - both public behaviour and private beliefs are changed. There are 3 processes: Consistency, commitment and flexibility.
  • Consistency - Consistency makes others rethink their own views ('Maybe theyve got a point if they all think this way and they have kept saying it'). There are 2 types of consistency: synchronic consistency - people in the minority are all saying the same thing, and diachronic consistency - they've been saying the same thing for some time. 
  • Commitment - Helps gain attention. Activities must cause some risk to the minority to demonstrate commitment to the cause. The argumentation principle is that the majority pay even more attention ('Wow, he must really believe in what he's saying, so perhaps i ought to consider his view').
  • Flexibility - Nemeth argued that being consistent and repeating the same arguments and behaviours is seen as rigid and off-putting to the majority. Instead, the minority should adapt their point of view and accept reasonable counter-arguments. 
  • Snowball effect - (minority becomes the majority). Over time, more people become 'converted' - switch from the minority to the makority. The more this happens the faster the rate of conversion. Gradually the minority view becomes the majority and social change has occured. 
  • Key study - Moscovici et al: he blue-green slides:
  • Procedure - A group of 6 people viewed a set of 36 blue-green coloured slides varying in intensity…


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