Intergroup Conflicts in Politics Paper

In the essay, please follow the structure as below:

1. Abstract (summary of the paper) (250 words)

2. Intergroup Conflicts in Politics (500 words)

– Definition of intergroup conflict (50-100 words)
– Introduction of intergroup conflict in politics (150 words)
– 1~2 example of intergroup conflict in politics (150 words)
– Explain why it is a problem (150 words)

3. Use the theories below to explain the potential cause of the intergroup conflict in politics. (1000 words)

-Sumner’s Theory of Ethnocentrism (300 words)
-Social Identity theory (300 words)
-Social Categorisation theory (300words)

4. Explain how to use the strategies below to reduce ‘intergroup conflict in politic’ which will encourage positive social change in individuals, families, and communities. (1000 words)

– Decategorization (200 words)

– Recategorization (200 words)

– Mutual Differentiation (200 words)

– General Contact Hypothesis(200 words)

– Cognitive treatment (200 words)

  • Please include at least 10 references in APA style.
  • Please use plagiarism check.


Detail resources and materials:

3. Potential cause of the intergroup conflict in politics:

Sumner’s Theory of Ethnocentrism

Ashmore, R. D., Jussim, L., & Wilder, D. (Eds.). (2001). Rutgers series on self and social identity; Vol. 3. Social identity, intergroup conflict, and conflict reduction. New York, NY, US: Oxford University Press.

Bar-Tal, D. (1990). Causes and consequences of delegitimization: Models of conflict and ethnocentrism. Journal of Social Issues, 46(1), 65-81.

The following excerpts from the book ‘Social identity, intergroup conflict, and conflict reduction’:

An early theory of the interrelationship between ingroup attachment and identification and outgroup antagonism was implicit in the definition of “ethnocentrism” when the term was introduced by Sumner (1906). Ethnocentrism was described by Sumner as a universal characteristic of human social groups whereby a differentiation arises between ourselves, the we-group, or in-group, and everybody else, or the others-group, out-groups. The insiders in a we-group are in a relation of peace, order, law, government, and industry, to each other. Their relation to all outsiders, or others-groups, is one of war and plunder. . . . Ethnocentrism is the technical name for this view of things in which one’s own group is the center of everything, and all others are scaled and rated with reference to it. . . . Each group nourishes its own pride and vanity, boasts itself superior, exalts its own divinities, and looks with contempt on outsiders. . . . (pp. 12– 13)

The features characteristic of Sumner’s ethnocentrism syndrome include negative attitudes toward outgroups as well as positive feelings and evaluations of the ingroup. Further, an explicit negative correlation between ingroup and outgroup attitudes is postulated: the greater the attachment and solidarity within the ingroup, the greater the hostility and contempt directed toward outgroups. This hypothesized relationship between ingroup love and outgroup hate derived from Sumner’s functional theory of the origins of social groups and intergroup conflict:

“The relation of comradeship and peace in the we-group and that of hostility and war towards others-groups are correlative to each other. The exigencies of war with outsiders are what make peace inside, lest internal discord should weaken the we-group for war. . . . Thus war and peace have reacted on each other and developed each other, one within the group, the other in the intergroup situation. . . . Sentiments are produced to correspond. Loyalty to the ingroup, sacrifice for it, hatred and contempt for outsiders, brotherhood within, warlikeness without— all group together, common products of the same situation. (1906, pp. 12– 13, emphasis added)”

The last 20 years of social psychological research on ingroup bias and intergroup relations have cast doubt on the validity of the functional relationship between ingroup and outgroup attitudes and behavior presumed by Sumner. Results of the laboratory experiments using the “minimal group paradigm” designed by Tajfel and his colleagues (Tajfel, Billig, Bundy, & Flament, 1971) explicitly challenged the assumption that differential treatment of ingroup and outgroup members derives from cooperative interdependence within groups and competitive relations between groups. In the minimal group experiments, mere categorization of persons into differentiated social groupings has proved to be sufficient to give rise to preferential discrimination in favor of ingroup over outgroup members, in the absence of any differential interdependence (Tajfel et al., 1971; Turner, 1978; Brewer, 1979; Diehl, 1990). Field studies assessing the relationship between identification and attachment to ingroups and discrimination against outgroups have also failed to find any straightforward negative correlation between ingroup positivity and intergroup attitudes (Hinkle & Brown, 1990). For example, in a study of the reciprocal attitudes among 30 ethnic groups in East Africa, Brewer and Campbell (1976) found that almost all of the groups exhibited systematic differential positive evaluation of the ingroup over all out-groups on dimensions such as trustworthiness, obedience, friendliness, and honesty, but the correlation between this measure of ingroup positivity and distancing from outgroups was essentially .00 across the 30 groups (p. 85). Thus, the question of when and how ingroup identification is related to outgroup hostility and intergroup conflict requires further investigation.

Social Identity theory

Trepte, S. (2017) Social Identity Theory and Self‐Categorization Theory

Tajfel, H., & Turner, J. C. (1986). The social identity theory of intergroup behavior. In S. Worchel & W. G. Austin (Eds.), Psychology of intergroup relations (The Nelson-Hall series in psychology) (pp. 7–24). Chicago, IL: Burnham.

Turner, J. C., & Reynolds, K. J. (2001). The social identity perspective in intergroup relations: Theories, themes, and controversies. In R. Brown & S. Gaertner (Eds.), Blackwell handbook of social psychology: Intergroup processes (pp. 133–152). Malden, MA: Blackwell.

The psychology of intergroup relations by S. Worchel & W.G. Austin. Copyright 1986 by STEPHEN WORCHEL. Reprinted by permission of STEPHEN WORCHEL via the Copyright Clearance Center.Bornstein, G. (2003). Intergroup conflict: Individual, group, and collective interests. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 7(2), 129–145.

Ashforth, B. E., & Mael, F. (1989). Social identity theory and the organization. Academy of management review, 14(1), 20-39.

Hogg, M. A., Terry, D. J., & White, K. M. (1995). A tale of two theories: A critical comparison of identity theory with social identity theory. Social psychology quarterly, 255-269.

Writing example:
From a micro perspective, Social Identity Theory can exemplify intragroup conflict and how it contributes to intergroup conflict. SIT proposes the idea that ones social categorization or classification (Democrat Republican, Liberal, Conservative) is a part of ones identity (Hogg, Terry & White, 1995). For example, Bernie Sanders is criticized by republicans and democrats as being a “socialist” because his liberal ideologies seem too extreme in terms of equality, economic production and regulation. His classification as a liberal identifies him as a socialist in political media. This creates intergroup conflict because conservatives use it to their advantage to point out the flaws or negative aspects of having a “socialist government”. Additionally, identity of ones group brings awareness of differences in outgroups and reinforced ones awareness of ones ingroup (Ashforth & Mael, 1989) increasing the dividing gap between political parties. Realizing ones distinctiveness reinforces group values, practices and salient qualities as well as individual values that distinguishes uniqueness among individuals associated with the same group. Overall individual awareness and identification contributes to intergroup conflict by revealing unique aspects of each candidate. From this perspective, instead of addressing issues with a party’s political view, politicians may address issues about individual candidates. The latter can be effective in addressing individual issues of other candidates in the same political party or opposing party.

Social Categorisation theory


Perdue, C. W., Dovidio, J. F., Gurtman, M. B., & Tyler, R. B. (1990). Us and them: Social categorization and the process of intergroup bias. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 59(3), 475–486.

Tajfel, H., Billig, M. G., Bundy, R. P., & Flament, C. (1971). Social categorization and intergroup behaviour. European journal of social psychology, 1(2), 149-178.

Wenzel, M., Mummendey, A., Weber, U., & Waldzus, S. (2003). The ingroup as pars pro toto: Projection from the ingroup onto the inclusive category as a precursor to social discrimination. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 29(4), 461–473.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

Dasgupta, N. (2004). Implicit ingroup favoritism, outgroup favoritism, and their behavioral manifestations. Social Justice Research, 17(2), 143–169.

Writing example:

Social categorization refers to the process of placing individuals into different social groups. The categorization of people occurs according to their membership in groups which addresses them as members of a social group. It, therefore, occurs randomly without giving the idea much thought.The process occurs at any time by applying to group memberships in the community. An example of social categorization applies in an instance such as that of meeting a new professor where he or she might be classified to be either a man or a woman, as an academic or an American, and so on (Turner & Reynolds, 2001). It is, therefore, a normal perception socially as people tend to infer about other persons. It is at this moment essential to consider how cognitive power reduces the power of group stereotype and evaluate the strategies used to encourage cognitive manipulation.

Briefly speaking, SCT suggests that people classify themselves into groups according to shared beliefs, attitudes, characteristics, similar qualities or interests (Tajfel, Billig, Bundy & Flament, 1971). Politically it makes sense to relate republicans to conservatives and liberals to democrats because republicans share similar political ideologies that differ from democrats and liberals. As mentioned in previous sections, liberals and conservatives is a theoretical ideology. Democrats and republics are grouped or classified based off their practical methods guided by political ideologies. This distinction is a natural conflict that sets politicians apart on a group level and individual level (Micro/Macro). The issue with classification leads ingroup members to favor one another over outsiders as well as generate intergroup biases and prejudices (Ashforth & Mael, 1989, Perdue, Dovidio, Gurtman & Tyler, 1990). This is clearly exemplified in politics with issues regarding tax increases. For instance, many republicans refuse to raise tax or set a tax rate that takes more money with higher income. Voters who share similar views are likely to fund and support republican candidates who are likely to represent their values. On the other end of the political spectrum, democrats wish to increase taxes especially on the wealthy to create equal financial distribution. Voters who classify themselves as financially disadvantaged are more likely to support and fund democrats. Political ideology is the main cause for intergroup conflict which is best exemplified with SCT.

4. Reducing intergroup conflict:


Gaertner, S. L., Dovidio, J. F., Banker, B. S., Houlette, M., Johnson, K. M., & McGlynn, E. A. (2000). Reducing intergroup conflict: From superordinate goals to decategorization, recategorization, and mutual differentiation. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 4(1), 98–114.

Gaertner, S. L., Mann, J., Murrell, A., & Dovidio, J. F. (1989). Reducing intergroup bias: The benefits of recategorization. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57, 239–249.

Brewer, M. B. (2000). Reducing prejudice through cross-categorization: Effects of multiple social identities. In S. Oskamp (Ed.), Reducing prejudice and discrimination (pp. 165–183). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.

Reducing prejudice and discrimination by Oskamp, S. Copyright 2000 by TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP LLC – BOOKS. Reprinted by permission of TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP LLC – BOOKS via the Copyright Clearance Center.

Pettigrew, T. F. (1998). Intergroup contact theory. Annual Review of Psychology, 49, 65–85.

Pettigrew, T. F., & Tropp, L. R. (2008). How does intergroup contact reduce prejudice? Meta-analytic tests of three mediators. European Journal of Social Psychology, 38(6), 922–934.

Hornsey, M. J., & Hogg, M. A. (2000c). Subgroup relations: A comparison of mutual intergroup differentiation and common ingroup identity models of prejudice reduction, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26, 242–256.

Cognitive method

How cognitive power reduce power of group stereotype

Exercise of the brain is a strategy that the cognitive power uses to reduce group stereotypes. By use of the mind, research shows that with improved brain functioning, the brain experiences neuroplasticity.Neuroplasticity refers to the ability of the brain to grow with neuronal connections formed.Stimulation of the brain reduces stereotypes by providing a correspondence of specific functions such as information processing that minimizes perceptions people have on others. With a series of mixed reviews, exercising of the brain helps keep the mind active by diversifying on its growth. Additionally, meditation boosts mental functioning through techniques that control ones’ emotions and thoughts.Mindful meditation eases group stereotype by improving the mental clarity on perceptions that contribute to analyzing of information.

Strategy used by cognitive manipulation to reduce social categorization

In a case of social categorization, exposure to the natural environment is a strategy that influences the functioning of the mind of an individual. The environment at this moment acts as an element that improves human psychological functioning. Interactions made by human nature are usually goal-oriented (Fiske et al., 2010). Therefore, interactions with nature act as drives to connect with nature. In a case of anxiety, such as a meeting of a new professor, an environment of this kind works by capturing attention which creates conditions that restore the mental state through replenishment.

Stereotypes can, therefore, be minimized by the use of activities that influence the brain functioning by controlling them on the ideas that come in mind. Social categorization can as well be reduced through the influence of environmental factors that act on connecting the brain to nature.Anxiety will at this moment be minimized through the natural element that replenishes the mind to a state that is active and clear.Cognitive strategies should, therefore, be improvised in helping control group stereotypes by using brain techniques that will improve the overall functioning of the brain.


Fiske, S. T., Gilbert, D. T., & Lindzey, G. (Eds.). (2010). Handbook of social psychology (5th ed., Vol. 2). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.Chapter 29, “Intergroup Bias”

Turner, J. C., & Reynolds, K. J. (2001). The social identity perspective in intergroup relations: Theories, themes, and controversies. In R. Brown & S. Gaertner (Eds.), Blackwell handbook of social psychology: Intergroup processes (pp. 133–152). Malden, MA: Blackwell.

General Contact Hypothesis

The General hypothesis theory seeks to find the conditions under which intergroup contact can lead to an improvement in the relations of two differing groups. According to the theory, intergroup contact can lead to a reduction in prejudice and intergroup tensions. However, there is also evidence that intergroup contact can have no positives on prejudice and in some cases, it can lead to exacerbating the situations (Binder et al., 2009). Several variables can shape the situation at hand. Researchers have categorized these variables into three main categories which are; the character of the contact members, the nature of the contact situation and the attitudinal and behavioral results.

According to the general contact theory, prejudice in groups is likely to reduce when two groups are brought together and participate in activities with members of the other group than just minor sightseeing.Contact between two groups with equal status reduces prejudices whereas contact between two groups with a lower status leads to an increase in prejudice. When two high-status groups interact, they change the views of each other and reduce hatred. However, when a low-status group meets a high-status group, the low-status group may feel inferior and diminished. Cooperative activities are the best in reducing prejudice, whereas competitive activities lead to an escalation in the conflict. Personalities also have an impact on the success of contact theory (Binder et al., 2009).

Application of the General Contact Hypothesis

To effectively use the General contact hypothesis to solve a conflict between two groups, the group leaders must first understand that minor sightseeing can lead to an escalation of the conflict. The leaders should, therefore, create a conducive environment that can promote interaction and sharing of information to reduce prejudice. Then, the group members must put their background qualities like economic status and level of education aside to have equal status. The mediator should then make a common goal that can include a problem or task that both groups should cooperate to work on. The task should not be competitive but should require both groups to pool their efforts to solve it. The two groups’ members should then accept to get support from some authority that can encourage a friendly and egalitarian attitude and at the same time condemn ingroup-outgroup comparisons (Pettigrew, 1998). Lastly, the mediator should allow every individual from the two different groups to interact on a personal level to mingle and get to know more about each other. When they know about each other, they get to a great friendship and end the conflict.

Three strategies to use to structure contact

For the mediator to promote contact between the two groups, three strategies will get used. The strategies are; de-categorization, re-categorization, as well as mutual differentiation. In de-categorization, the mediator encourages each groups’ member to view each other as separate individuals and have personalized individual relationships with each other to help them become friends. In re-categorization, the mediator structures the definition of groups at a high level of inclusiveness to help reduce bias as well as conflict. Mutual differentiation is an approach whereby the mediator encourages the two groups to stress their mutual uniqueness but in the context of supportive interdependence. The two groups then focus on their superiority and weaknesses and finally appreciate each other (Gaertner et al., 2000).


Binder, J., Zagefka, H., Brown, R., Funke, F., Kessler, T., & Mummendey, A. et al. (2009). Does contact reduce prejudice or does prejudice reduce contact? A longitudinal test of the contact hypothesis among majority and minority groups in three European countries. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 96(4), 843-856. doi: 10.1037/a0013470

Gaertner, S. L., Dovidio, J. F., Banker, B. S., Houlette, M., Johnson, K. M., & McGlynn, E. A. (2000). Reducing intergroup conflict: From superordinate goals to decategorization, recategorization, and mutual differentiation. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 4(1), 98–114.

Pettigrew, T. F. (1998). Intergroup contact theory. Annual Review of Psychology, 49, 65–85.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases