Psychologist Leon Festinger first proposed a theory of cognitive dissonance centered on how people try to reach internal consistency. Festinger's cognitive dissonance theory suggests that we have an inner drive to hold all our attitudes and behavior in harmony and avoid disharmony (or dissonance). When there is an inconsistency between attitudes or behaviors (dissonance), something must change to eliminate the dissonance.‎Definition · ‎Leon Festinger · ‎Forced Compliance · ‎Decision Making. Jump to Self-perception theory - In The Gestalt Theory of Motivation , the social psychologist In The Theory of Cognitive Dissonance: A Current.


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Evidence from a Blind Two-choice Paradigm with Young Children and Capuchin Monkeys reports similar results in the occurrence of cognitive dissonance in human beings and in animals.

Social Norms or Social Preferences?

a theory of cognitive dissonance That social preferences and social norms are related, and function in line with wage-giving among three persons.

The actions of the first person influenced[ clarification needed ] the wage-giving actions of the second person. That inequity aversion is the paramount concern of the participants.

Cognitive dissonance

Effort justification Cognitive dissonance occurs to a person when he or she voluntarily engages in physically or ethically unpleasant activities in effort to achieve a desired goal. The mental stress caused by the dissonance can be reduced by the person's exaggerating the desirability of the goal.


In The Effect of Severity of Initiation on Liking for a Groupto qualify for admission to a discussion group, two groups of people underwent an embarrassing initiation, of varied psychologic severity. The first group of subjects were to a theory of cognitive dissonance aloud twelve sexual words considered obscene; the second group of a theory of cognitive dissonance were to read aloud twelve sexual words not considered obscene.

Both groups then were given headphones to unknowingly listen to a recorded discussion about animal sexual behaviour, which the researchers designed to be dull and banal.


As the subjects of the experiment, the groups of people were told that a theory of cognitive dissonance animal-sexuality discussion actually was occurring in the next room. The subjects whose strong initiation required reading aloud obscene words evaluated the people of their group as more-interesting persons than the people of the group who underwent the mild initiation to the discussion group.

Threatened Morality and Physical Cleansingthe results indicated that a person washing his or her hands is an action that helps resolve post-decisional cognitive dissonance because the mental stress usually was caused by the person's ethical—moral self-disgust, which is an emotion a theory of cognitive dissonance to the physical disgust caused by a dirty environment.

Cognitive Dissonance (Leon Festinger)

Cognitive Dissonance Reduction During Decision-making indicated that a theory of cognitive dissonance rated 80 names and 80 paintings based on how much they liked the names and paintings. To give meaning to the decisions, the participants were asked to select names that they might give to their children.

For rating the paintings, the participants were asked to base their ratings on whether or not they would display such art at home.

The results indicated that when the decision is meaningful to the person deciding value, the likely rating is based on his or her attitudes positive, neutral, or a theory of cognitive dissonance towards the name and towards the painting in question.

The participants also were asked to rate some of the objects twice and believed that, at session's end, they would receive two of the paintings they had positively rated.

The results indicated a great increase in the positive a theory of cognitive dissonance of the participant towards the liked pair of things, whilst also increasing the negative attitude towards the disliked pair of things.

The double-ratings of pairs of things, towards which the rating participant had a theory of cognitive dissonance neutral attitude, showed no changes during the rating period. Therefore, the existing attitudes of the participant were reinforced during the rating period, and the participants suffered cognitive dissonance when confronted by a liked-name paired with a disliked-painting.

A Theory of Cognitive Dissonance | Leon Festinger

The fox's act of rationalization justification reduced his anxiety about the cognitive dissonance occurred because of a desire he cannot realise. Ent and Mary A Gerend informed the study participants about a discomforting test for a specific fictitious virus called the "human respiratory a theory of cognitive dissonance.

The study used a fake virus to prevent participants from having thoughts, opinions, and feeling about the virus that would interfere with the experiment.


The study participants were in two groups; one group was told that they were actual candidates for the virus test, and the second group were told they were not candidates for the test.