Saleem, M., & Anderson, C. A. (2013). Arabs as terrorists: Effects of stereotypes within violent contexts on attitudes, perceptions, and affect. Psychology Of Violence,3(1), 84-99. doi:10.1037/a0030038

Objective: Test the effects of stereotypic video game portrayals with and without violence on attitudes toward the stereotyped group. Method: Two experiments tested the effects of stereotypic video game portrayals of Arabs in a violent and nonviolent context on implicit and explicit attitudes and perceptions of Arabs. Results: In both experiments, participants who played an antiterrorist game displayed heightened anti-Arab attitudes relative to participants who played a nonviolent game. In Experiment 1, those who had played a Arab-terrorist game were more likely to draw “typical” Arabs with stereotypic traits, negative affect, and weapons. In Experiment 2, inclusion of Arab characters in a nonviolent game was sufficient to increase anti-Arab attitudes, but the Arabs-as-terrorists game yielded even stronger effects. Conclusion: These results are important for three reasons. First, results suggest that video game stereotypes can prime negative and aggressive perceptions, attitudes, and affect toward the stereotyped group. Second, this effect appears larger when the stereotyped group is portrayed in a violent-terrorism context than in a nonviolent context. Third, playing a terrorism themed game even without Arab characters led to higher anti-Arab attitudes, suggesting the presence of a strong associative link between terrorism and Arabs in the sampled population. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved)