On the categorization of admired and disliked exemplars of admired and disliked racial groups

Jennifer A. Richeson*, Sophie Trawalter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


The present work examined the influence of affective fit in the racial categorization process. Study 1 tested whether famous exemplars of stigmatized and nonstigmatized racial groups are categorized by race at differential rates, depending on whether they are admired or disliked. Using an inverted-face paradigm, Study 2 examined whether racial categorization accuracy differs for admired and disliked exemplars of these groups. Study 3 examined the influence of collective self-esteem on Whites' tendency to differentially categorize admired and disliked Black and White exemplars. Last, Study 4 replicated the pattern of results found in the previous studies for White participants, making use of unknown exemplars about whom participants learned either positive or negative information prior to categorizing them. Taken together, the results suggested that phenotypically irrelevant affective information regarding exemplars and their social group memberships influences the racial categorization process. Implications for prejudice and stereotyping are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)517-530
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of personality and social psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2005


  • Automatic evaluation
  • Person perception
  • Race
  • Social categorization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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