The symbolic identity implications of inter and intra-group transgressions

Tyler Okimoto, Michael Wenzel

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    18 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The current investigation proposes that symbolic identity concerns underlie retributive desires following a transgression, but that the type of identity concern that primarily drives that retribution varies between intra and intergroup contexts. More specifically, a respondent's social identity may be threatened by calling into question his or her ingroup's status and power in the larger superordinate society, a concern that is particularly relevant in intergroup contexts. Identity may also be threatened by questioning a group's identity-defining values, a concern that is particularly relevant in intragroup contexts. In support of these assertions, the current study shows that desires for retribution following an intergroup terrorist attack were stronger when the attack was framed as attempting to undermine the victimized nation's status/power, but were stronger following an intragroup terrorist attack when framed as attempting to undermine national values. Moreover, these differences only occurred for respondents high in national identification, underscoring that the effects are based on identity processes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)552-562
    Number of pages11
    JournalEuropean Journal of Social Psychology
    Volume40
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010

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