John Dovidio speaking at Wittenburg University, March 27

Stephanie Little, Chair of Psychology at Wittenburg University in Springfield, Ohio invites us to two invited lectures by John F. Dovidio, Professor of Psychology and Public Health at Yale University. He will present “Why Can’t We All Get Along? The Challenges of Race Relations in America” onn Wednesday, March 27, 2019, at 7:30 p.m. in Bayley Auditorium (Barbara Deer Kuss Science Center). He will also present a colloquium, “Included But Invisible? The Intergroup Consequences of Colorblindness for Immigrant and Racial Minority Groups,” at 4:00pm (same location). She writes:

Although John F. Dovidio may best be known by the public for his expert commentary on the ABC series, “What Would You Do?” with John Quinones, Dr. Dovidio is widely recognized in the scientific community as a preeminent social psychologist, winning the Donald T. Campbell Award in Social Psychology in 2011 for career contributions to the field and the Kurt Lewin Award in 2004 by the Society for the Study of Social Issues for scholarly accomplishments.

Dr. Dovidio, along with his long-time collaborator, Samuel L. Gaertner, uncovered evidence supporting the notion of “aversive racism,” where well-intentioned Whites who see themselves as egalitarian and fair-minded toward African Americans may nevertheless harbor unconscious negative thoughts and feelings that can often result in discriminatory behavior. Because such discriminatory behavior is antithetical to their conscious beliefs, they tend to rationalize and deny that their negative behavior toward African Americans is racist. Such subtle forms of racism have recently become popularized and introduced into the public forum as implicit, as opposed to explicit, racism.

Dr. Dovidio not only identifies and illustrates modern forms of prejudice and their consequences through empirical investigations, he also demonstrates mechanisms for ameliorating their negative effects. For example, using their “Common Ingroup Identity Model” of intergroup relations, Dr. Dovidio and his colleagues have facilitated processes which can enhance trust and adherence to medical advice among White physicians and Black cancer patients. These procedures may ultimately be applicable to a wide range of problems confronting our multicultural society.