Janet B. Ruscher, Ph.D.


(504) 862-3309
School of Science & Engineering
Janet Ruscher



Education & Affiliations

Ph.D., 1991, University of Massachusetts-Amherst


Dr. Ruscher's social cognition research focuses primarily on stereotyping and prejudice in communication and language. Current work considers the role of metaphors in perception of disparaged outgroups, as well as perceptions of hate speech.


3049 Percival Stern Hall

Selected Publications

Woods, F. A., & Ruscher, J. B. (in press). What’s in a name…and for whom?: How public spaces named for prejudiced individuals impact targets of prejudice. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations

Merritt, S. K., O’Brien, L. T., & Ruscher, J. B. (2021). Creating clever internet memes perpetuates offensiveness. Western Journal of Communication, 85, 471-486.  DOI: 10.1080/10570314.2020.1800812

Van Bommel, T., Merritt, S. K., Shaffer, E. & Ruscher, J. B. (2021). Behavioral mimicry and interaction expectations impact affect in interracial interactions. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 45, 207-239. DOI:  10.1007/s10919-020-00353-z.

Woods, F., & Ruscher, J. B. (2021). Viral sticks, virtual stones: addressing anonymous hate speech online, Patterns of Prejudice, 55, 265-289. DOI: 10.1080/0031322X.2021.1968586

Woods, F. A., & Ruscher, J. B. (2021). ‘Calling-out’ vs. “calling-in” prejudice: Confrontation style affects inferred motive and expected outcomes. British Journal of Social Psychology,  60, 50-73.  DOI: 10.1111/bjso.12405

Tipler, C. N., & Ruscher, J. B. (2019). Dehumanizing representations of women: The shaping of hostile sexist attitudes through animalistic metaphors. Journal of Gender Studies. 28, 109-118. DOI: 10.1080/09589236.2017.1411790

Ruscher, J. B., & Tipler, C. N. (2018). Linguistic intergroup bias about the 2016 U.S. presidential candidates as a function of political ideology. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 18, 61-80. DOI: 10.1111/asap.12149

Ruscher, J. B. (2017). Adult attachment predicts advice, exemplar sharing, and questions to acquaintances recently diagnosed with cancer. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 36, 484-493. DOI: 10.1177/0261927X16667435

Ruscher, J. B. (2017). Expectations about re-entering the weekly cycle following disruption by familial death or holiday. Time & Society, 26, 321-338.  DOI: 10.1177/0961463X15577284

Boasso, A., Overstreet, S., & Ruscher, J. B. (2015). Community disasters and shared trauma: Potential implications of listening to a co-survivor narrative. Journal of Loss and Trauma, 20, 397-409 DOI: 10.1080/15325024.2014.912055

Van Bommel, T., Sheehy, A., & Ruscher, J. B. (2015). The role of attachment style in women's recognition of sexism. Personality and Individual Differences, 74, 235-240.

Tipler, C. N., & Ruscher, J. B. (2014). Agency’s role in dehumanization: Non-human metaphors of outgroups. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 8, 214-228.

Ruscher, J. B. (2012). Describing grief under cyclical versus linear conceptions of time. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 31, 533-546

Ruscher, J. B. (2011). Moving forward: The effect of spatial metaphors on perceptions about grief . Social Psychology, 42, 225-230. [Special issue: Spatial Constraints on Social Cognition]

Bradley-Geist, J. C., & Ruscher, J. B. (2011). Showcasing and subjugating minorities and women: Assignment to visible but trivial committees. Journal of Psychological Issues in Organizational Culture, 2, 5-18.

Ruscher, J. B., Wallace, D., Walker, K. M., & Bell, L. H. (2010). Constructive feedback in cross-race interaction. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 13, 603-619.

Kaplan, S. A., Santuzzi, A. M. & Ruscher, J. B. (2009). Elaborative meta-perceptions in outcome-dependent situations: The diluted relationship between default self-perceptions and meta-perceptions. Social Cognition, 27, 602-615

Ruscher, J. B., Cralley, E. L., & O'Farrell, K. J. (2005). How newly acquainted dyads develop shared stereotypic impressions of others through conversation. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 8, 259-270.

Ruscher, J. B. (2001). Prejudiced communication: A social psychological perspective. New York: Guilford Press.