Skip to comments.Why Do People Support Underdogs And Find Them So Appealing?
Posted on 12/19/2007 6:06:22 PM PST by blam
Why Do People Support Underdogs And Find Them So Appealing?
ScienceDaily (Dec. 19, 2007) In a series of studies, researchers from the University of South Florida tested the scope of people's support for those who are expected to lose, seeking to understand why people are drawn to the Rocky Balboas and the Davids (versus Goliaths) of the world.
Using both sports and political examples, the researchers* asked study participants to react to various scenarios presenting different competitors with an advantage or disadvantage.
For instance, in one study using the Israeli and Palestinian conflict, the participants were given the same essay about the history of the area, but with different maps to reference -- one showing Palestine as smaller than Israel (and thus, the underdog) and the other showing Israel as smaller.
No matter what scenario the participants were presented with, they consistently favored the underdog to win.
Why do people support underdogs and find them so appealing?
The researchers propose that those who are viewed as disadvantaged arouse people's sense of fairness and justice -- important principles to most people.
The researchers also found that people tend to believe that underdogs put forth more effort than top-dogs, but that favorable evaluation disappeared when the underdog status no longer applies, such as when people are expected to lose but have a lot of available resources.
The article, "The Appeal of the Underdog" is published in the current issue of Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
Researchers from University of South Florida included Joseph A. Vandello, Nadav P. Goldschmied, and David A. R. Richards.
Adapted from materials provided by Sage Publications.
Compassion/sympathy plus people can relate to them over 'perfect' people.
I think most people tend to see themselves as underdogs.
It’s because people are jealous of their betters and want to see them taken down a peg. They identify with the underdog because they’re losers.
Because most people ARE underdogs.
Are you serious?
People love to see the little guy win over the establishment big cheese.
The entrenched champion is often arrogant and needs a good kick in the head.
I will tell ya what is sweet.
The Cleveland Indians kicking the Yankees ass with a quarter of the payroll.
Yea but they are still from Cleveland. It ainât the a$$hole of the earth but you can see it from there. I spent most of last March in that $hithole (across the street from Jacobs Field) and as far as I am concerned the terrorists can pop the first nuke there. Oh and NYC can be second.It is not personal, I just do not care for either place. Mostly you can have anything East of the Missouri River.
Rags-to-riches, irony, the turning of the tables — these are all staples of American literature. Rocky, Rudy, the little engine that could, great stories, rousing ones. One of my best personal stories is of me, with a C- average, a sophomore, enrolling in a philosophy course where the professor looked over his glasses while leaning on the podium and said, “I see that some of you in here are just barely hanging on here at the college. You have NOT come to the right place to repair your GPA.” I resolved I’d show that SOB. I read everything TWICE, if I had to, in order to digest the material and write essay answers that would have him begging me to MAJOR in philosophy by the time I was done. That is exactly what happened when on the final exam, he slipped in a doozy about Wittgenstein, and I nailed that essay to a T. He wrote on my paper: “Well-written, cogent, impressive. Have you ever considered a major in philosophy?”
So, I showed him. But it was really he who showed me. He brought the best out of me and made a lifelong thinker out of me.
They are from Arkansas.
I like that story. But you really majored in Engineering, right?
I rather see the answer for “Why Do Pseudo-”Conservatives” Support RINOs (with weak resumes) And Find Them So Appealing?”
Must be why the Detroit Lions have so many fans!
D@mned if I know....
Ron Paul? How about Duncan Hunter? He’s the underdog, I think.
Jesus Christ was the Ultimate Underdog, born in a manger.
According to Intrade, the winner of the December 12th GOP debate was... Duncan Hunter.
What a ridiculous comment.
Thanks. No, I majored in Anthropology, with minors in linguistics, French, Bible and PHILOSOPHY.
Good for you! I took a Master’s in Philosophy as well.
And I have since become self-taught in ancient history... :)
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.