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Intergroup Sentiments, Political Identity, and Their Influence on Responses to Potentially Ameliorative Proposals in the Context of an Intractable Conflict

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Journal of Conflict Resolution

Published online on


Two studies examined the association of particular sentiments and political identities with Jewish-Israeli students’ responses to a generic plan to end the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and to narrower proposals for cooperative undertakings. Three composites—hatred/anger, compassion/empathy (reverse-coded), and guilt/shame (reverse-coded), and also a global composite combining these three sets of sentiments, were generally associated with negative responses to those plans and negative attributions about the wisdom and patriotism of supporters of those plans. Most of the associations between the global sentiments composite and the relevant responses continued to be statistically significant even after controlling for participants’ political identity. The interaction between the relevant sentiments and the putative authorship of one of the proposals was also investigated. Issues of generalizability, replicability, robustness, and of the relevance of mediational analysis, as well as implications for conflict resolution and potential directions for future research are addressed in a concluding discussion.