Boosting the Potency of Resistance: Combining the Motivational Forces of Inoculation and Psychological Reactance

Claude H. Miller, Bobi Ivanov, Jeanetta Sims, Josh Compton, Kylie J. Harrison, Kimberly A. Parker, James L. Parker, Joshua M. Averbeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Scopus citations

Abstract

The efficacy of inoculation theory has been confirmed by decades of empirical research, yet optimizing its effectiveness remains a vibrant line of investigation. The present research turns to psychological reactance theory for a means of enhancing the core mechanisms of inoculation-threat and refutational preemption. Findings from a multisite study indicate reactance enhances key resistance outcomes, including: threat, anger at attack message source, negative cognitions, negative affect, anticipated threat to freedom, anticipated attack message source derogation, perceived threat to freedom, perceived attack message source derogation, and counterarguing. Most importantly, reactance-enhanced inoculations result in lesser attitude change-the ultimate measure of resistance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-155
Number of pages29
JournalHuman Communication Research
Volume39
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Anthropology
  • Linguistics and Language

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