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Cognitive Dissonance How do human beings make decisions What triggers a personto take action at any given point These are all questions that I will attemptto answer with my theoretical research into Leon Festingers theoryof cognitive dissonance as well as many of the other related theories Weoften do not realize the psychological events that take place in our everydaylives It is important to take notice of theories such as the balance theorythe congruency theory and the cognitive dissonance theory so that onesself-persuasion occurs knowingly As psychologist and theorist gain a betterunderstanding of Festingers cognitive dissonance theory manipulationcould occur more easily than it already does in todays society Leon Festingers cognitive dissonance theory is veryclosely related to many of the consistency theories The first of the majorconsistency theories the balance theory was proposed by Fritz Heider 19461958 and was later revised by Theodore Newcomb 1953 Larson 1995 Heiderand Newcombs theory was mostly looking at the interaction between twopeople interpersonally and the conflicts that arose between them Whentwo people have conflicting opinions or tension is felt between another personit is more likely persuasion will occur Because if no tension was felt betweenthe two parties or there were no conflicting opinions there would be noneed to persuade each other If you think about it persuasion occurs onlybecause there is tension between two facts ideas orpeople Charles Larson writes in his book Persuasion Receptionand Responsibility another approach to the consistency theory iscongruency theory by Charles Osgood and Percy Tennenbaum 1955 p82This theory suggest that we want to have balance in our lives and there isa systematic way to numerically figure it out When two attitudes collidewe must strive to strike a balance between the two attitudes The balancevaries depending on the intensity we feel about each attitude and ourpre-disposed positions concerning the attitude We either have a favorable neutral or unfavorable opinion concerning ideas When two attitudes collidewe will attempt to downgrade the favorable position and upgrade
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