Resistant versus acquiescent responses to ingroup inferiority as a function of social dominance orientation in the USA and Italy

Jennifer R. Overbeck, John T. Jost, Cristina O. Mosso, Agnieszka Flizik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Social identity theory typically emphasizes how low status group members resist and challenge imputations of inferiority (Tajfel & Turner, 1979), whereas system justification theory emphasizes the tendency to accept and justify status hierarchies (Jost & Banaji, 1994). On the theoretical assumption that responses to ingroup inferiority would vary according to individual differences in social dominance orientation (SDO; Pratto, Sidanius, Stallworth, & Malle, 1994), we predicted and found in two studies that low SDO members of low status groups engage in resistance and social competition, as social identity theory would predict, whereas high SDO members follow system justifying patterns of acquiescence and even active bolstering of the status quo. The fact that the studies were conducted in two cultures (USA and Italy) that differ with regard to hierarchical traditions and beliefs about social mobility increases the generalizeability of the results and strengthens the conclusion that SDO predicts acquiescent vs. resistant responses to ingroup inferiority.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-54
Number of pages20
JournalGroup Processes and Intergroup Relations
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2004

Keywords

  • Inferiority
  • Intergroup relations
  • Outgroup favoritism
  • Power
  • Social dominance
  • Social identity
  • Status
  • System justification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

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