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A term used in social identity theory to explain intergroup differentiation. According to in-group favoritism, people prefer the group that they belong to and identify themselves with. Evolutionary psychologists have suggested that humans developed the distinction between in-group and out-group to quickly discern whether someone is a friend or a foe (Krebs & Denton, 1997). A person who is classified as belonging to the in-group is seen as favorable. A person who is classified as not belonging to the in-group is often negatively stereotyped, potentially resulting in a biased perception of that person. For more information, see Krebs and Denton (1997).

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