Previous research has shown that negative attitudes towards immigrants and support for anti-immigrant parties are observed both among those experiencing relative deprivation and those experiencing relative gratification (so called v-curve). Whereas the effect of relative deprivation is intuitive, the effect of relative gratification is more difficult to explain. Why would economic prosperity provoke negative attitudes towards immigrants? We first present correlational (Study 1) and experimental (Study 2) support for the v-curve. In Study 1, in a national Swiss referendum, a higher percentage anti-immigrant voting was found in cantons with relatively lower and relatively higher relative disposable income. In Study 2, in a hypothetical society, more opposition to ‘newcomers’ joining society was found among poor or above average wealth group members than among those in a moderate wealth group condition. In Study 3, we replicate this finding and also show that opposition to immigration is higher for all wealth groups when societal inequality is growing rather than declining. In a final study, we examine different forms of relative gratification and mediators of the relationship between relative gratification and opposition to immigration (i.e., identification, collective self-definition as competent and cold, and fear about future wealth). Only fear about future wealth mediates this relationship. We conclude that, paradoxically, relative gratification effects are partly due to the fear of future deprivation.
The data package contains four datasets:
- Data is gathered from publicly available data bases and compiled with the software package SPSS.
- Data is collected through surveys and compiled with the software package SPSS.Datafile contains item pertaining to Opposition to Immigration (OTI).
- Data is collected through surveys and compiled with the software package SPSS. Containing similar items to Study 2.
- Data is collected through surveys and compiled with the software package SPSS. (Preseco=present economy, futeco=future economy, pasterco=past economy).