The two faces of dominance: The differential effect of ingroup superiority and outgroup inferiority on dominant-group identity and group esteem

Rosalind M. Chow, Brian S. Lowery, Eric D. Knowles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The present paper provides evidence that dominant-group members distinguish dominance framed as ingroup superiority from dominance framed as outgroup inferiority, and that ingroup superiority enhances esteem for, and thus identification with, the group more than outgroup inferiority. In Experiment 1, Democrats report higher levels of party identification after being told that Democrats won an election than after being told that Republicans lost the election. These effects are attenuated among dominant group members whose values are in conflict with how dominance was achieved. In Experiments 2a and 2b, unearned dominance framed as ingroup superiority resulted in higher levels of White identification than unearned dominance framed as outgroup inferiority among Whites who did not value meritocracy. In contrast, Whites who valued meritocracy did not increase their levels of identification with the group. In Experiment 2b, this interactive effect on racial identification was mediated by esteem for the group.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1073-1081
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
Volume44
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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