Allison Skinner does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.University of Washington provides funding as a member of The Conversation US.Then, this past summer, a man stabbed an interracial couple after seeing them kiss in public.As a social psychologist, I’ve often wondered: are these types of incidents aberrations?
In other words, would the insula of participants light up when viewing interracial couples?
Consistent with polling data, we found that participants claimed to be largely accepting of interracial relationships.
We also found that disgust and acceptance were highly correlated; the less accepting people were of interracial relationships, the more disgusted they were by them.
Through the early 20th century, many Americans reacted to the idea of interracial marriage with revulsion.
For example, Abigail Adams reportedly said that “disgust and horror” filled her mind when she saw dark-skinned Othello touch pale-skinned Desdemona in the theatrical production of Othello.