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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Impactful interactions : how the experience of social ostracization influences our moral judgments of others Carpenter, Tara Louise


Social connectedness is a fundamental human need (Baumeister, & Leary, 1995). As an inherently social species, we rely on others for protection, survival, and reproductive success; as such, we are necessarily sensitive to threats to our social connections. This dissertation examined whether individuals that socially ostracize others are perceived as lacking in moral foundations, and whether this effect is moderated by the racial ingroup or outgroup status of the individuals perpetrating the ostracization. I also evaluated individuals’ interest in, and reasoning for, socially affiliative and socially aggressive responses following inclusion and ostracization. I found that the experience of social ostracization influenced judgements of others’ likelihood of violating the moral foundations of fairness and authority, but not of caring, loyalty, or sanctity, irrespective of the others’ ingroup or outgroup status. The experience of social ostracization also influenced participants socially affiliative and social aggressive responses, again irrespective of the others’ ingroup or outgroup status.

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