The composition of category conjunctions

Russell Hutter, Richard Crisp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

61 Citations (Scopus)


In three experiments, the authors investigated the impression formation process resulting from the perception of familiar or unfamiliar social category combinations. In Experiment 1, participants were asked to generate attributes associated with either a familiar or unfamiliar social category conjunction. Compared to familiar combinations, the authors found that when the conjunction was unfamiliar, participants formed their impression less from the individual constituent categories and relatively more from novel emergent attributes. In Experiment 2, the authors replicated this effect using alternative experimental materials. In Experiment 3, the effect generalized to additional (orthogonally combined) gender and occupation categories. The implications of these findings for understanding the processes involved in the conjunction of social categories, and the formation of new stereotypes, are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)647-657
Number of pages11
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2005


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