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Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 4:30pm to 5:30pm

Virtual Event

Simone Tang

Assistant Professor, Organizational Behavior
The Hotel School, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business


"Chelsea Clinton is a Dog” and “Baron Trump is a Home-Schooled Shooter:” Derogating Children of Politicians Increases Perceived Suffering and Punishment Satisfaction

Part of our vitriolic political discourse now frequently involves derogating the family members of politicians. Why do we do so? Past research has shown that when we want to hurt someone, we want them to suffer and feel pain. In order to suffer, however, the person needs to have an experiential mind -- a mind capable of feeling. Yet people generally think of politicians as incapable of feeling and lacking genuine emotions, leaving attempts to hurt the politician unsatisfying. People thus have to identify a proxy experiential mind of the politician, which I propose is the spouse or children. In a series of experimental and field studies, I find that people believe the politician is suffering more, and subsequently feel more satisfied, when they denigrate the politician's family instead of the politician himself.


Closed captioning will be available.

Dial-In Information

Zoom link:
Meeting ID: 956 3249 5391, Passcode: 126116

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Event Type



Psychology, Human Development, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, School of Hotel Administration (SHA)




Contact E-Mail

Contact Name

Julie Simmons-Lynch

Contact Phone

607 255-6431


Simone Tang

Speaker Affiliation

Assistant Professor, Organizational Behavior The Hotel School, Cornell SC Johnson College of Business

Dept. Web Site

Disability Access Information

Closed captioning



Open To

Cornell community

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