Intergroup affect and social judgment: Feelings as inadmissible information, Group Processes & Intergroup Relations
Affective states can influence evaluative judgments by serving as a source of information in the judgment process. Stigmatized minority groups often elicit negative affective reactions and thus may suffer from the infusion of negative feelings into evaluative judgments made about them. However, a commitment to egalitarian ideals may lead social perceivers to seek to avoid being influenced by their negative affect towards minorities. It was predicted and found that negative feelings about a stigmatized social group (gay men and lesbians) would not be evident in explicit evaluations unless situational cues are present that provide a seemingly legitimate basis for negative evaluation other than the group stigma per se. Thus, even if perceivers consider their negative feelings about minority groups to be `inadmissible information,' when these feelings can be misattributed to some seemingly relevant feature other than the target group's identity, they can indeed result in substantially more negative evaluative reactions.
Bodenhausen, Galen. 2001. Intergroup affect and social judgment: Feelings as inadmissible information. Group Processes & Intergroup Relations. 4(1): 21-31.