Majority group children expect that ethnic out-group peers feel fewer positive but more negative emotions than in-group peers

Jellie Sierksma, Gijsbert Bijlstra

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticle


Across two studies majority group children's (8-13 years) perception of positive and negative emotions in ethnic in-group and disadvantaged ethnic out-group peers was examined. Study 1 (N = 302) showed that children expected in-group peers to feel better in a positive situation compared to out-group peers. Whereas, in a negative situation, children expected in-group peers to feel less bad compared to out-group peers, particularly when they evaluated the in-group as very positive. Study 2 (N = 201) replicates these findings across multiple positive and negative situations, and additionally shows that in very negative situations children expect in-group and out-group peers to feel equally bad. These results suggest that children's perception of emotions in others is influenced by ethnic group membership.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1210-1223
Number of pages14
JournalCognition and Emotion
Issue number6
Early online date18 Nov 2008
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019



  • Emotions
  • children
  • ethnicity
  • intergroup

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