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Restoring Civil Societies: The Psychology of Intervention and Engagement Following Crisis

ISBN: 978-0-470-67143-6
328 pages
October 2012, Wiley-Blackwell
Restoring Civil Societies: The Psychology of Intervention and Engagement Following Crisis (0470671432) cover image

Breakdowns in civil societies can be catalyzed by factors ranging from war and genocide to natural disaster, disease and economic downturns. Restoring Civil Societies examines social processes related to civic engagement in the wake of these societal ruptures. The authors show how crises in civil society can be both pervasive and localized, broad-based and limited to defined social sub-groups. Whatever their scale, Restoring Civil Societies identifies models that analyze the social psychology of crises in order to devise ways of re-activating civic engagement and safeguarding civil society.

Focusing on these positive interventions, the authors identify a number of key strategies, ranging from the simplicity and directness of bystander interventions to the volunteer armies mobilized in the wake of natural disasters. They include collective action organized to redress systemic inequalities, and the vital healing role played by truth commissions in Rwanda and elsewhere. Restoring Civil Societies fills the gap between basic research on social issues and translation into social policies and programs-an area which, in light of current economic and social unrest, is more important now than ever.

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Notes on Contributors ix

Series Editor’s Preface xix

1 Introduction 1
Kai J. Jonas and Thomas A. Morton

Part I Theoretical Approaches 17

2 Justice Sensitivity as Resource or Risk Factor in Civic Engagement 19
Anna Baumert, Nadine Thomas, and Manfred Schmitt

3 Regulating Psychological Threat: The Motivational Consequences of Threatening Contexts 38
Bastiaan T. Rutjens, Joop van der Pligt, and Frenk van Harreveld

4 Prosocial Behavior in the Context of Crisis 57
Kai J. Jonas

5 A Social Ecological Perspective on Risk and Resilience for Children and Political Violence: Implications for Restoring Civil Societies 78
E. Mark Cummings, Laura K. Taylor, and Christine E. Merrilees

6 Everyday Helping and Responses to Crises: A Model for Understanding Volunteerism 98
Allen M. Omoto, Mark Snyder, and Justin D. Hackett

7 Collective Action as Civic Engagement: Toward an Encompassing Psychological Perspective 119
Martijn van Zomeren, Tom Postmes, and Russell Spears

8 Intergroup Relations in Post-Conflict Contexts: How the Past Influences the Present (and Future) 135
John F. Dovidio, Samuel L. Gaertner, Ruth K. Ditlmann, and Tessa V. West

9 Humanizing Others Without Normalizing Harm: The Role of Human Concepts and Categories in Intergroup Reconciliation and Forgiveness 156
Thomas A. Morton, Matthew J. Hornsey, and Tom Postmes

Part II Application and Intervention 175

10 Social Rituals and Collective Expression of Emotion After a Collective Trauma: Participation in Gacaca and Assimilation of the Rwandan Genocide 177
Bernard Rimé, Patrick Kanyangara, Dario Paez, and Vincent Yzerbyt

11 Competitive Victimhood Among Jewish and Palestinian Israelis Reflects Differential Threats to Their Identities: The Perspective of the Needs-Based Model 192
Nurit Shnabel and Masi Noor

12 Identity, Conflict, and the Experience of Trauma: The Social Psychology of Intervention and Engagement Following Political Violence 208
Orla T. Muldoon and Robert D. Lowe

13 Divided by a Common Language? Conceptualizing Identity, Discrimination, and Alienation 222
Leda M. Blackwood, Nick Hopkins, and Stephen D. Reicher

14 Civil Society Responses to the HIV/AIDS Crisis: The Role of Social Representations in Shaping Collective and Individual Action 237
Stefan St€urmer and Birte Siem

15 Opinion-Based Groups and the Restoration of Civil Society 250
Craig McGarty, Girish Lala, and Emma Thomas

16 Moral Courage Training Programs as a Means of Overcoming Societal Crises 265
Veronika Brandst€atter and Kai J. Jonas

17 Media as an Instrument for Reconstructing Communities Following Conflict 284
Elizabeth Levy Paluck

Index 299

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Thomas A. Morton is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Exeter, UK. His research focuses on how people experience and express their social identities, and the strategic considerations and reality constraints that govern these processes. His work on this theme has covered such topics as conflict and forgiveness, intragroup processes, deviance and change, prejudice, and stereotyping. He is currently Associate Editor for the British Journal of Social Psychology.

 

Kai J. Jonas is Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. He studied social sciences and mathematics at the University of Gottingen, Germany. Since 2008 he has been tenured assistant professor at the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands, publishing in international journals such as Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. He has also developed, implemented and documented applied intervention programs.

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