Agnieszka Golec de Zavala

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Agnieszka Golec de Zavala

Head of the PrejudiceLab; Reader, Goldsmith, University of London, United Kingdom; University Professor, University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Poznań, Poland; Visiting Professor, ISCTE-CIS, Lisbon, Portugal

Summary of research

Collective narcissism, prejudice, extremism and populism; Psychology of intergroup conflict and political violence; Embodiment of prejudice; Self-transcendent emotions, mindfulness, yoga

Research interests

In my research I have developed a specialized research agenda driven by a question: What makes people prejudiced and what makes them fight in conflicts? I have researched the concept of collective narcissism – resentment for the in-group’s unrecognized greatness – that predicts retaliatory intergroup hostility, prejudice, revengefulness and unforgiveness, political radicalisation and belief in conspiracy theories. In my recent research I have examined how collective narcissists react to intergroup exclusion and how collective narcissism is related to personal self-esteem. My lab have also been testing the effects of self-transcendent emotions on the link between collective narcissism and intergroup hostility. We have used methods of neuroscience and physiology to assess the mechanisms underlying this effect.


I also examined how prejudice towards essentialized out-groups is embodied. In particular, I looked at effects of smell on prejudice and the link between physical contacts with out-group members and a need for physical cleansing. I also examined the cognitive and motivational underpinnings of political beliefs related to intergroup conflict and prejudice (e.g. political conservatism, nationalism and patriotism, religious orientations). I examined how such ideological orientations interact with the complexity of political reasoning; motivated closed-mindedness (e.g. need for cognitive closure), and death anxiety in inspiring intergroup hostility.

Latest posts

Read my latest posts!

Narcyzm narodowy i patriarchat

Narcyzm grupowy to przekonanie, że jest się członkiem wyjątkowej grupy, której cechą definiującą jest to, że jej wyjątkowość nie jest wystarczająco uz

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Collective narcissism and weakening of American democracy

Since rioters stormed the Capitol on January, 6th, 2021, to challenge the certification of Electoral College votes, President Donald Trump has come un

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"Nigdy nie będziesz szła sama": Dlaczego protesty wobec zaostrzenia bezprawia antyaborcyjnego w Polsce są początkiem nieodwracalnej zmiany

Zmiana światopoglądowa, która się wyraziła na polskich ulicach w drugiej połowie października 2020, dookreśliła się na zasadzie kontrastu ze zmianą ku

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Longitudinal data show how liberal voters became allienated during the pandemic in Poland

On how the liberal electorate got alienated during the COVID-19 pandemic in Poland.

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Sexism in times of pandemic

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, another tendency seems to spread like contagion—populist leaders mobilising to use the existing emergency to

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