Killing Begets Killing: Evidence From a Bug-Killing Paradigm That Initial Killing Fuels Subsequent Killing (2007)
AuthorsMartens, A., Kosloff, S., Greenberg, J., Landau, M.J., Schmader, T.show all
Killing appears to perpetuate itself even in the absence of retaliation. This phenomenon may occur in part as a means to justify prior killing and so ease the threat of prior killing. In addition, this effect should arise particularly when a killer perceives similarity to the victims because similarity should exacerbate threat from killing. To examine these ideas, the authors developed a bug-killing paradigm in which they manipulated the degree of initial bug killing in a "practice task" to observe the effects on subsequent self-paced killing during a timed "extermination task." In Studies 1 and 2, for participants reporting some similarity to bugs, inducing greater initial killing led to more subsequent self-paced killing. In Study 3, after greater initial killing, more subsequent self-paced killing led to more favorable affective change. Implications for understanding lethal human violence are discussed.
CitationMartens, A., Kosloff, S., Greenberg, J., Landau, M.J., Schmader, T. (2007) Killing Begets Killing: Evidence From a Bug-Killing Paradigm That Initial Killing Fuels Subsequent Killing. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33(9), pp. 1251-1264.
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