Cognitive and affective bases of opinion survey responses

Two experiments investigated the determinants of agreement with propositions that advocated social privileges for either people in general or specific social groups. Liking for the group to which a group-specific proposition referred had a contrast effect on agreement with a related general proposition that was considered immediately after it, but had a positive influence of agreement with a general proposition that did not occur until several items later. The latter effect was eliminated by instructing Ss to base their judgments on the consequences of the policies described in the propositions. Instructions to base judgments on affective reactions to the propositions produced contrast effects of group-specific propositions on judgments of general ones regardless of whether these items were separated or together in the questionnaire. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2007 APA, all rights reserved)