Hameiri et al., 2016: Representing absurd extreme right-wing views of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to Israelis reduced support for aggressive policies
Based on theory about paradoxical thinking, a multichannel media campaign in a small Israeli city promoted an absurd, extreme view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (e.g., “Without it we would never be moral…For morality, we probably need the conflict”). The campaign, conducted in a period of ongoing intergroup violence, included 4.4 million exposures to online banners, nearly 1 million views of 5 20-second videos, billboard posters in 20 central locations, and hundreds of themed t-shirts, balloons, and brochures distributed in the city center over 6 weeks. As compared to residents of a matched control city and their own pre-campaign reports, more hawkish residents in the treatment city surveyed independently at the end of the campaign reported less support for conflict-supporting attitudes. As compared to the matched control city, they also expressed less support for aggressive government policies, and more support for conciliatory policies.