From humanitarian aid to humanization: When outgroup, but not ingroup, helping increases humanization.
Dehumanization and infrahumanization involve decreasing the humanity attributed to others. Despite the existence of a large body of work on these topics, little is known about how to increase outgroup humanization. Across two experiments, we examined the effects of intergroup and intragroup helping on dehumanization and infrahumanization. In Study 1, we showed that news of an outgroup helping the ingroup after a natural disaster reduced infrahumanization, but not dehumanization. Reduced infrahumanization emerged regardless of the amount of aid given by the outgroup. By contrast, learning about ingroup helping the outgroup following a natural disaster did not decrease dehumanization or infrahumanization, regardless of amount of aid offered by the ingroup. Study 2 replicated and extended these findings by demonstrating that only intergroup helping by the outgroup to the ingroup reduced dehumanization. Intragroup helping, by either the ingroup or outgroup had no influence on outgroup perceptions. We report all measures, manipulations, and exclusions in each study. Implications of recent research on intergroup helping as a means to outgroup humanization are considered.