On page 392 of the textbook is a self test: How much do you…

On page 392 of the textbook is a self test:  How much do you know about the social world?  There are 10 statements.  Two of the 10 statements are false, the rest are true.  Which two are false?  Did that surprise you? Critical questions: 1.  Why do we tend to blame others for their misfortunes but deny responsibility for our own? 2.  Have you ever changed a strongly held attitude?  What caused you to do so?

Answers to the self-test on page 392:
The two false statements from the self-test on page 392 are not provided, as the information regarding those statements is not available in the query. Furthermore, the surprise factor cannot be determined without knowing the specific false statements.

Critical Questions:
1. Why do we tend to blame others for their misfortunes but deny responsibility for our own?
The tendency to blame others for their misfortunes while denying responsibility for our own can be attributed to various psychological and sociological factors. One possible explanation is the fundamental attribution error, which refers to the tendency to attribute people’s behavior to their internal characteristics rather than to external circumstances. When we see others experiencing misfortunes, we are more likely to attribute their actions or choices to their personality traits, dispositional factors, or flaws. This allows us to distance ourselves from any sense of personal vulnerability or responsibility. On the other hand, when we face misfortunes ourselves, we are more likely to attribute them to external factors, such as situational pressures or bad luck, in order to preserve our self-image and avoid feelings of guilt or shame.

Moreover, socialization and cultural influences play a role in shaping our tendency to blame others. Society often encourages a culture of individualism, which promotes personal autonomy and responsibility. As a result, individuals may feel more inclined to emphasize their own agency and attribute their successes to personal achievements, while blaming others for their failures. Additionally, societal norms and values, such as a desire for justice or fairness, can influence our inclination to hold others accountable for their actions while minimizing our own responsibility.

2. Have you ever changed a strongly held attitude? What caused you to do so?
Yes, individuals have the capacity to change their strongly held attitudes under various circumstances. Attitude change can occur through a process known as persuasion, which involves the presentation of new information or arguments that challenge and reshape existing beliefs. Several factors can influence attitude change, including the content and source of the persuasive message, the receiver’s motivation and ability to process information, and the social context in which the persuasion occurs.

One influential theory of persuasion is the elaboration likelihood model (ELM), which suggests that there are two routes to attitude change: the central route and the peripheral route. In the central route, individuals carefully evaluate the information and arguments presented, critically analyze them, and update their attitudes accordingly. This typically occurs when people have a high motivation and ability to process the information, and when the message is personally relevant and credible. On the other hand, in the peripheral route, individuals are more influenced by peripheral cues, such as the attractiveness or likability of the communicator, rather than the strength of the arguments. This route is more likely to be taken when people have low motivation or ability to process the information.

Various factors can contribute to attitude change, such as exposure to new information, personal experiences that do not align with existing attitudes, social interactions, and changing societal norms. For example, individuals may change their attitudes on social issues like gay rights or climate change after engaging in conversations with people who hold different perspectives. Moreover, the experience of cognitive dissonance, which occurs when there is a discrepancy between one’s beliefs and actions, can also prompt attitude change. When individuals confront inconsistencies within their attitudes or behaviors, they may be motivated to resolve this discomfort by altering their attitudes to align with their actions.

In conclusion, the capacity to change attitudes and the reasons for doing so are influenced by various factors, including cognitive biases, societal norms, persuasion techniques, and personal experiences. Attitude change is a complex process that can contribute to individual growth and adaptation.