Self-categorization, commitment to the group and social self-esteem as related but distinct aspects of social identity.

N. Ellemers, P. Kortekaas, J.W. Ouwerkerk

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    Abstract

    The aim of this study is to show that, when examining social identification, it is both possible and important to distinguish between self-categorisation, commitment to the group, and group self-esteem, as related but separate aspects of group members' social identity. This was demonstrated in an experiment (N ˆ 119), in which Ingroup Status (high/low), Ingroup Size (majority/minority), and Group Formation (self-selected/ assigned group membership) were manipulated orthogonally. The results of this study confirm that these three aspects of social identity can be distinguished as separate factors in a principal components analysis. Furthermore, as predicted, the three aspects are di€erentially related to manipulated group features, as well as displays of ingroup favouritism. Group members' self-categorisations were only aff€ected by the relative size of the group, while group self-esteem was only influenced by group status. A€ective commitment to the group depended both on group status and on the group assignment criterion. Importantly, only the group commitment aspect of social identity mediated displays of ingroup favouritism.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)371-381
    Number of pages11
    JournalEuropean Journal of Social Psychology
    Volume29
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1999

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