Reactivity to social stress in ethnic minority men

Martin Gevonden*, Inez Myin-Germeys, Marieke Wichers, Jan Booij, Wim van den Brinkf, Ruud van Winkel, Jean-Paul Selten

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Repeated exposures to social exclusion, through a process of sensitization, may result in larger responses to experiences of social stress. The current study tested the hypothesis that healthy Moroccan-Dutch men respond stronger to social stress than Dutch controls 1) in daily life, and 2) in an experimental set-up. A general population sample of 50 Moroccan-Dutch and 50 Dutch young adult males were tested with 1) the Experience Sampling Method, a structured diary technique, assessing reactivity to social stress in daily life, and 2) an experimental exposure to social peer evaluation. No group differences were found in affective or psychotic reactivity to daily social stress. When exposed to a negative social evaluation in the lab, a blunted affective response was found in the Moroccan-Dutch compared to the Dutch group, whereas the psychotic response did not differ significantly between groups. In conclusion, healthy Moroccan-Dutch men are not more sensitive to social stress than healthy Dutch men. Instead, the blunted affective response of Moroccan-Dutch men to peer evaluation may signify habituation rather than sensitization.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)629-636
JournalPsychiatry Research
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2016


  • Social environment
  • Psychotic disorders
  • Transients and migrants
  • Monitoring
  • ambulatory
  • Peer influence

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